February 12, 2010 - The NYK Group has been providing free transport to assist ”Campaign to Deliver Picture Books” organized by ?Shanti Volunteer Association (SVA),* a nongovernmental organization, and the total number of transported books recently surpassed 100,000 copies. On February 4, NYK Vega, an NYK Group–operated containership loaded with the 100,000th book, left the port of Tokyo.
SVA’s ”Campaign to Deliver Picture Books” is a volunteer activity to deliver to needy areas Japanese picture books containing stickers bearing text translations in local languages. Books collected from throughout Japan are carefully checked by SVA volunteers, and are delivered to children in Cambodia, Laos, and Myanmar (Burma) refugee camps in Thailand using a combination of ship and truck that takes about a month. Books are delivered to libraries and used in classrooms to improve literacy and emotional education for children.
Since fiscal 2004, the NYK Group has supported the campaign and shipped books free of charge as one of the company’s CSR activities. The total number of transported books now stands at 106,152, including 21,563 that were shipped in early February.
In addition to transport assistance, the group has held workshops at which translations are stuck onto the books by volunteers from the group’s executives and staff. At workshops, SVA staff members use photos to explain the situations at destinations, and group members attach translation stickers to pages in the books. In fiscal 2009, 104 group members, including NYK president Yasumi Kudo, participated in workshops and attached stickers in 107 picture books.
The stories in the picture books provide children, many of whom have suffered from sorrow and anxiety caused by poverty and civil wars, with a feeling of peace and comfort. The NYK Group will continue to provide free transport assistance for books by working together with SVA.
*Shanti Volunteer Association
In 1981, SVA started to distribute picture books at Cambodian refugee camps. It offers educational and cultural support to children, mainly in Asia. Website: sva.or.jp