Making a Difference for Tsunami SurvivorsPosted: July 6, 2011
Nonprofit Cafe Serves Up Healing for Tsunami Survivors: Miko Onodera is trying to provide a different type of recovery for her neighbors in the tsunami-battered city of Kesennuma: emotional healing.
Onodera, 41, who runs a nonprofit focused on helping the disabled, is now the maître d of a newly opened café, which she is hoping can in small ways help survivors get over the psychic scars left by the March 11 disaster.
She sees that as the next phase in getting her hometown back to normal.
Onodera said she has so far seen three phases of recovery in the nearly three months since the tsunami generated by a massive 9.0 earthquake offshore roared into Kesennuma and other coastal communities in northeast Japan. First was the immediate need for food and shelter, then the survivors needed clothing, then the focus turned to replacing home supplies such as electrical appliances and cooking tools as the survivors moved into temporary public housing.