Story: NPO Kagayaku Nakama Challenged, Orion Co-Living Facility for the Disabled (Former name: Kokoro Saori)
Trainee: Shoko (woman/ age 38 at the time/ limited use of upper body due to dysfunction)
Staff: Ms. Kumai (participated in the interview to assist Shoko)

Shoko’s home was far away from Orion, so her family who lived with her could not easily go check on her.


Was there anything that worried you?

Shoko: I was worried that I couldn’t get through to my family on the phone.


Around how many days was it before you were able to talk to them?

Shoko: My parents heard from their neighbors that I’d been taken to the Ishinomaki Red Cross Hospital, so they came to the hospital and we were able to talk a little there.

Kumai: Shoko’s family really had deep roots in the local community. Her parents owned a store.

Shoko’s mother and father weren’t able to come check on her, but a neighbor came here by bicycle (to the building they had evacuated from, where the old workshop was).

I was just trudging through the mud to get water when I happened to meet the neighbor. I told them Shoko was safe.

Even though our workshop was far away from Shoko’s house, this person empathized with Shoko’s parents who were worried about her and came to check on her. That made me realize how deeply connected Shoko’s family was with the community.