12 Nov Good Works
On May 21, 2011 Seichou Karate® Dojo of Alexandria, VA held a “fun-raiser” to benefit victims of the earthquake and tsunami that struck northeast Japan.
The event, which featured demonstrations by outstanding DC drum troop NenDaiko, SeichouKarate® Dojo, obon folk dancing, kabuki face-painting and famed DC Magician The Great Zucchini, drew over 200 children and raised $10,000.
SeichouKarate® founder and event organizer Richard Romero said that, after the March disaster, he and others with strong ties to Japan were frustrated because it was difficult to assist victims. So, overseas friends of Japan had to be creative. In the case of Seichou Karate®, it?s strong ties to northern Virginia families presented an opportunity because the suffering of Japanese families would certainly resonate across cultures with U.S. families.
However, holding a fun event in the context of the profound tragedy of the disaster was a delicate matter. So, although the event consisted of light-hearted entertainment, Romero used the beauty of Japanese traditional culture as a means of personalizing the devastating tragedy for event attendees. Romero said, “it really worked because our guests learned that Japan, which is the birthplace of wadaiko, karatedo and kabuki, had suffered an enormous loss and needed support.”
In fact, Romero continued ?northern Virginia?s response to the Fun-Raiser was terrific because all performers donated their time and a number of local businesses chipped in different goods and services for the auction. In particular, Burgundy Farm Country Day School hosted the event at its beautiful gymnasium. Even our insurance underwriter provided coverage for the event free of charge!
Happily, Seichou Karate?s not-for-profit partner, PG Foundation Inc., donated $10,000 to the Shanti Volunteer Association (SVA) to fund its mobile library project that serves communities affected by the disaster.
SeichouKarate® Dojo is seeking further public support for its scholarship program that makes world class martial arts study available to economically disadvantaged children in metro DC. For information on how to sponsor a child for life-changing Japanese martial arts training, email firstname.lastname@example.org.