A core value of MnK is to give back to the community and we periodically donate funds to charitable organisations. Team members decide which charities and organisations to support and for the start of this year we have contributed to the Japan based charity, Ashinaga. Below is a little information about the organisation and if you have any suggestions for future fundraising efforts please get in touch.
"Ashinaga" means "long legs" in Japanese. Named after the famous work by American writer Jean Webster, “Daddy Long Legs”- the novel tells the story of a girl named Jerusha Abbott, an orphan whose attendance at a women's college is sponsored by an anonymous benefactor. In the style of the novel, Ashinaga developed the first anonymous donation system in Japan, in which donors are called "Ashinaga-san." At Ashinaga, the donations of Ashinaga-san support orphans ("orphan" is defined as a child who has lost either one or both of their parents); the organization also supports children who have a parent with a disability that prevents them from working.
Ashinaga receives no government support; it is funded solely by contributions from private individuals and companies. Each year 6,000 orphans receive Ashinaga scholarships.
Key initiatives that Ashinaga are currently involved with include:
Today, the implementation of educational support for African children who have lost parents is one of the Ashinaga movements central projects. Through their program “100-Year Vision for Supporting the Higher Education of Orphaned Students from Sub-Saharan Africa”, Ashingawa select one brilliant orphaned student from each of the 49 Sub-Saharan countries in Africa, and provide them the opportunity to attend the world's top universities, expecting them to gain the capability to establish and improve their own societies in the future.
Ashinaga provide them with an intensive study camp at Ashinaga Kokorojuku, our educational facility in Uganda, where they strengthen their linguistic abilities and subjects of interest. We also provide the students with a 4-year scholarship and their living expenses during those 4 years.
With the help of a large number of donations received from Japanese and overseas sources following the March 11, 2011 disaster, Ashinaga has been able to provided one-time emergency relief grants and emotional care to children who lost parents in the disaster.
Currently Rainbow Houses are being constructed in Sendai and Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture, and in Rikuzentakata, Iwate Prefecture. These facilities will serve as Ashinaga’s regional centers and help provide bereaved families and children with short and long-term support, as well as opportunities to meet and socialize with other people. Ashinaga will also use the facilities to train volunteers who will act as facilitators and take care of grieving children who are visiting these centers.
Ashinaga supports children who have lost parents who wish to go to high school, college, university, or vocational schools by providing scholarships in the form of interest-free loans.
For more information or to contribute to this charity please see their website.