I'm a high school student in Tokyo and this is a project I started to help women in a fishing village in Tohoku called Funakoshi. After the 3/11 earthquake and tsunami, some wives of fishermen in this village began making charms out of slate from the roofs of their wrecked houses (there was only one family still living in the town because it was totally destroyed) to give to volunteers as thanks for their work. Then someone suggested the women try selling them. The project took off and the charms are selling really well. The money raised is shared equally among all the people involved to help the town get back on its feet.
The problem was that the women needed more manpower. They work 6 days a week but couldn't keep up with orders. I heard about the women and their problem through It's Not Just Mud, an NPO working directly with the women. This is why I started CharmWorks. In this project, volunteers come together at Nishimachi International School in Tokyo to paint charms, and the charms are then sold to raise money for the town.