|Introducing the Mothers’ Radiation Lab Fukushima, and plans for the clinic.
This video was made with the cooperation of Yu Sanbonsuge, a videographer from Fukushima.
Earthquake, Tsunami, and meltdown
5 years ago, on a bright afternoon, the tragic earthquake hit Japan, The tsunami and the Fukushima nuclear disaster followed. Three of the reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant went through meltdown, and radioactive materials were released into the air and the ocean.
Even today, radioactive materials are still being released into the air and the ocean. More than 100,000 people are still forced to live in evacuation.
Bringing up children in Fukushima
1 in 2 mothers in Fukushima have concerns about bringing up their children in Fukushima Prefecture (1). You can’t see, smell or feel radiation, so it is something people are afraid of.
“Don’t touch the flower!” One mother told us that having to yell this at her son when he was playing outside has been the most painful.
“I was very impressed by the fact that this institute was built by the citizens, for the citizens, and for their next generations. In that sense, the morale is very high. The scientists who gathered are top-notch experts in Japan.”
Director of Life Development Center, Watanabe Clinic
Supervisor, Div. Mental Health, Pediatric Dep. Keio University Hospital
President, the FOUR WINDS for Infant Mental Health
President, the Japanese Affiliate of the WAIMH
Official Health Checks
The official health checks conducted by the Fukushima Prefecture are limited to only thyroid checks, as the part of the body known to be particularly affected by radiation. However, it is necessary to also check the impact on eyes, hearts, livers and blood, as well as the psychological impact.
Mothers' Radiation Lab
Founded in 2011, our mission is to protect our children from the invisible threat, radiation. Our solution is to measure this radiation, and make it visible. Local parents bring their vegetables, vacuum cleaner dust, sand from the kindergarten sandpit, or soil from the school playground to our lab for checking. We measure anything and everything.
Our radiation lab is the only citizen-run lab that measures not just Cesium 134 and 137, but also Strontium 90 and Tritium, which require high-level expertise.
Radiation Measurement Results
Health clinic (will open in April, 2017)
It takes time for the effects of exposure to radiation to appear in the body. We learned from Chernobyl that this can be 5 to 10 years, or even more. This is why it is critical now, 5 years since the Fukushima nuclear disaster, to start a clinic.
Thyroid cancer is well known as a health risk of exposure to radiation. This clinic will not only check thyroids, but carefully look at many other health risks, including blood tests to judge immunity levels, cataract checks, liver checks and more.
・ Free blood tests for children under 18 even if they do not have any symptoms, for which public health insurance cannot be used. (The more donations we receive, the more free tests we can offer.)
・ Being right next to our radiation lab means people can both check whether they are exposed to radiations, and whether there are any effects of exposure in their bodies and minds.
Join our team now to protect our children
・Thyroid checks (now only carried out irregularly)
・Whole body radiation measurements (now only carried out irregularly)
・Community exchange space
[Location] Expansion of the Mothers’ Radiation Lab Fukushima
Address. 3rd floor, 11 Onahamahanabatake, Iwaki, Fukushima, JAPAN 971-8162
[Schedule to opening]
June-July 2016: Construction to expand space, installation of electricity and water facilities
Until March 2017: Securing doctors and nurses, establishing clinical and blood test facilities, etc
April 2017: Clinic Opening
“From our experience in the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, and from my own experience as a radiation therapy physician, it is obvious that we now need to care not only about cancer, but also about various health risks including chronic diseases. The opening of a clinic by Mothers' Radiation Lab Fukushima is a challenge to fill this need. I am prepared to offer all of my expertise for this.”
Honorary director, National Hospital
Organization Hokkaido Cancer Center
Hokkaido College of Radiology and Pharmacy
・no. of staff : 11 (as of September, 2016)
・Secretary General : Kaori Suzuki
・founded in 2011