Welcome to JEARN  10th anniversary of the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake 
Natural Disater Youth Summit 2005


In commemoration of the 10th anniversary of the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake, “The United Nations World Conference on Disaster Reduction” was held here in Hyogo in January, 2005. The conference was held immediately after the massive damage caused by the killer tsunami wave in the aftermath of the earthquake off Sumatra, drawing the world's attention. "Disaster reduction education" was claimed as one the world's disaster reduction policies in the conference.

Concurrently, the commemorative event "Hopes for revival prevail in earth" was held at the Awaji Yumebutai International Conference Center and was broadcasted by the Internet live streaming, which was the pre-conference for "Natural Disaster Youth Summit 2005.”

Kazuko Okamoto
Executive Director, NDYS 2005 in Hyogo Conference

 In the conference, we had an Internet video conference. Although we are far apart, the faces and voices of Iranian, Armenian and Taiwanese students on the screen integrated people in the conference hall with them. This shows the power of the Internet. I

 In this March, we will present declaration of "Natural Disaster Youth Summit 2005 in Hyogo" with representatives from participating countries, together with Japanese students, at Awaji Yumebutai International Conference Center. 

This is our first attempt to let students discuss disaster reduction for the future. We will achieve our goal “think about the importance of human life” by regarding the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake as our starting point, learning lessons from various natural disasters occurring all over the world, working together with students the world over through the Internet. 

This iEARN project, "Natural Disaster Youth Summit", was kicked off in September 2004. 300 students from 15 countries and 750 students from Japan, most of them having suffered from natural disasters such as big earthquakes have participated in the project. To make presentations, about 50 participants from 11 countries, - Argentina, Armenia, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Nepal, Russia, Senegal, Slovakia, Taiwan, and the United States of America -will come to Awaji in Hyogo, where the epicenter and hardest hit area of the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake was. 

This international conference includes joining the "UNICEF PARK PROJECT 2005 International camp: Healing and Study from Nature" on March 25 and 26. On the 27th, we will visit the Disaster Reduction and Human Renovation Institution, and the JICA Hyogo International Center, where we listen to reports by JICA personnel engaged in support operations in disaster-stricken area. We will also have a forum of discussion on "What can we do for possible disasters?" there. On the 28th, the last day of our program, students will present their 6-month-long studies at the poster session on the corridor, and on the stage in the main hall. Students from Aceh in Indonesia who have vivid memories of the devastated earthquake will also present their studies. Finally, the declaration will be adopted by all the participants and released throughout the world. 

Now that world is filled with various troubles which should be tackled by people in the world working together, "Natural Disaster Youth Summit 2005 in Hyogo” is expected to show the way to practice future "disaster reduction education", in which we ponder the importance of human life, the wonderfulness of helping each other, and "what we should do" or "how we live" as a member of a community by utilizing the ICT (Information Communication Technology).


March 20, 2005
  KOBE, Japan




Top of this page

All contents copyright © JEARN earthquake office all rights reserved