November 19, 2012

2012.08 Forum_WiA_Team

Message to the JCIE NGO Fund donors from World in Asia (WiA)

WiA is a recent grantee that works to support social entrepreneurship as a way to address the critical challenges facing the Tohoku region. They recently sent a note, thanking JCIE for our support.

Thank you so much for your continued interest and support. The 3.11 earthquake has not only brought tremendous physical damage but has also intensified the problems of an aging population and a declining economy in Tohoku. At the same time, because so much has been lost, social entrepreneurs are taking the recovery process as a chance to build new initiatives, picking up the real voices of the local residents one by one.

Founded six months after the disaster, WiA supports social entrepreneurs whose projects need a hand in scaling their impact. WiA provides hands-on support over three years from strategy and organizational development, fundraising support, impact assessment, coordination across the border between for-profits and non-profits, to regional and global replications.

The projects supported by WiA include ultra-affordable E-learning for kids from low-income families, community transportation for the aging population, town development with community tourism and micro-franchising, value addition of agriculture with employment for the challenged, women’s post-childbirth healthcare, and a community marketplace in Fukushima. Additionally, WiA has launched a web-based platform, called StoneSoup (, for providing updates on the projects and building a support community.

The disaster connected communities across borders, from social entrepreneurs in Tohoku to the global society. If we work together beyond the borders, not only can we solve the issues in Tohoku, but we can also catalyze innovations from Tohoku, for Japan, and for the world.

World in Asia (WIA)