Parliamentary-Association for the Promotion of “Kodomo-Takushoku”（Food delivery program for children） has been established!
On August 27th, the general meeting of the “Parliamentary-Association for the Promotion of Kodomo-Takushoku” was held!
Councilors Tomomi Inada, Yayoi Kimura, Akihisa Nagashima, and other Diet members who worked tirelessly to set up the Parliamentary-Association took the stage, and Chairperson Inada expressed her determination to make the “Kodomo-Takushoku” a permanent system.
About 40 Diet members and 20 media outlets gathered at the venue, where Mr. Hironobu Narisawa, the mayor of Bunkyo Ward, who was the first to implement the “Kodomo-Takushoku”, and I, the president of Kodomo-Takushoku-Ouendan（Food delivery program for children and families network in Japan）(Florence, etc.), gave speeches, followed by a Q&A session.
Kodomo-Takushoku is a program that delivers food and other items to needy households with children, continuously watches over them, and provides necessary support if risks are identified.
Koromo-Takushoku-Ouendan started Kodomo-Takushoku in 2017 in Bunkyo Ward using “Furusato-Nouzei” （a tax reduction given to tax payers who donate to local municipalities）. After that, Kodomo-Takushoku groups started up in Miyazaki, Nagasaki, Kyoto, Niigata and other prefectures, and Kodomo-Takushoku-Ouendan has provided support and know-how for their start-up.
Since the beginning of this year, the number of parents and children who tend to stay at home has increased due to school closures and self-restraint due to the coronavirus, and as a result, opportunities to watch over children have decreased and the risk of child abuse has increased.
This is something we as a country must do something about! So, as I wrote in my previous blog post (https://www.komazaki.net/activity/2020/05/post10596/), the “Kodomo-Takushoku” (3.1 billion yen) was included for the first time in the second supplementary budget for this fiscal year. Under this project, private organizations, such as Kodomo-Takushoku, are supposed to support the costs of visiting families that have become isolated in the community and strengthening the system of watching over children by providing them with food support and other assistance.
However! Some local municipalities have said that they cannot introduce the program unless there is a continuous budget for the next fiscal year and beyond, that it is difficult to judge the scope of households involved, and that they do not know how to share personal information between the government and private organizations.
This is why a number of local municipalities have recently introduced this program, and with the aim of making the “Kodomo-Takushoku” a permanent system, the Parliamentary-Association has been formed to consider issues such as the sharing of personal information while working to secure a budget for the next fiscal year and beyond.
We’re so happy to see the formation of the “Kodomo-Takushoku” the Parliamentary-Association that we’ve been focusing on!
Thank you to all of our legislators for recognizing the importance of “Kodomo-Takushoku” and starting a Parliamentary-Association!
Let’s spread the “Kodomo-Takushoku” across the country!
Nursery and school are almost back to normal, and it may feel like everyday life has somehow returned to the children, but they are still having difficulty getting together, spending a lot of time at home, and are at increased risk of abuse and domestic violence.
I am very concerned about children from families who are isolated in the community because they cannot say “help me” even though they are in trouble.
At the inaugural meeting, the mayor of Bunkyo Ward talked about the importance of “supporting invisible poverty without being able to see it”. In a place where everyone is poor, such as a slum, it may be easy to say, “I don’t have money, please help me,” but in other places, It’s hard to ask for help because they don’t want people to know they’re poor. That’s why in Bunkyo Ward, we have a delivery person dressed as a normal delivery person but with knowledge of how to watch over people, who delivers the food and talks to the users to check on their situation so that people around them don’t know that they are receiving help.
According to a survey on the impact of the new coronavirus, conducted by Kodomo-Takushoku-Ouendan in May of this year to households using Kodomo-Takushoku, about 80% of the respondents said that their lives have been made difficult, and 84.3% said that their households have been severely impacted by the new coronavirus, such as an increase in spending. However, the shocking reality is that many of them have not used the government’s and community support services. (Please refer to my previous article → https://www.komazaki.net/activity/2020/06/post10603/).
It is important to reach out to those families who cannot say “help me,” as in the case of Kodomo-Takushoku, and to connect them with the government and others as needed.
In order to expand the “Kodomo-Takushoku” throughout the country and make it a permanent system, it is impossible for us, a private organization, to do it alone. We need the cooperation of many people, including members of parliament, relevant ministries and agencies, local and regional legislators, social welfare councils, and the press.
We will do our best to bring smiles to the faces of parents and children who are having a hard time, so we ask for your cooperation, everyone!
Support the Kodomo-Takushoku with donations.
However, the government’s budget does not include the costs of supporting the start-up of local Kodomo-Takushoku groups and providing them with know-how, as is done by Kodomo-Takushoku-Ouendan.
We are working to get this project included in the budget for next year and to get a subsidy for the expenses for providing know-how, but it is not clear how much the government will subsidize it in the future.
Therefore, we are in need of your warm donations. If you would like to support our movement to spread the “Kodomo-Takushoku” across the country, please support us with a donation!
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