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The History of the movement

This movement, which pleads for the importance of life, started when Eika, my daughter, was fighting cancer. This organization exists today because many staff members and those who supported us overcame hardships and challenges in order to move forward. Along with the precious thoughts of those who understood and accepted Eika’s implied wish in her words, “Because it’s only one life…,” which she left behind, it would be an honor for us to convey the preciousness of life to many people. In order for you to gain a better understanding of the movement, I would like to share the outline of Eika’s life and the actual history of this movement.

Yoshihide Nishio
Advisor
Only One Life-Live It! Association

(Edited by the secretariat)

Outline of Eika’s Life

1991

 April 3 Eika was born in Hakodate, Hokkaido and weighed 3.740 grams.

Eika

Birth of Eika

 


2004

 March 4 Graduated from Futamatagawa Elementary School. Left the Yamaha Music School after nine years of learning the piano.
 April 4 Entered Makigahara Junior High and joined the tennis club.
 April Deeply moved after watching a TV drama called “Until the Battery Runs Out”.
 August Found a book called “Children Seeding” at a book store in Shiga while visiting her father’s parents during her summer vacation. Started picking up garbage after watching the TV program and reading the book. She continued doing this after one of her arms had to be amputated.

Recital at Yamaha Music School

Recital at Yamaha Music School

Joined Tennis Club

Joined Tennis Club

 


2005

 March 23 Complained about pain in her arm during the spring of eighth grade. She was 14 years old.
 May 1 Meets Mr. Yoshimichi Katsumoto (Executive Advisor of the Only One Life - Live It! Association) and forms close ties with him ever since.
 May 9 Hospitalized at the children’s ward of Teikyo University School of Medicine University Hospital in Mizunoguchi due to bone cancer and starts chemotherapy.
 September 7 Her right arm was amputated.
 December 22 Discharged from the hospital after chemo therapy and recuperates at home. Due to change in Eika’s condition, Mr. Katsumoto starts to provide emotional support to Eika and her parents.

Eika receives words of encouragement from Mr. Katsumoto

Eika receives words of encouragement from Mr. Katsumoto

Mr. Katsumoto visits Eika at the hospital

Mr. Katsumoto visits Eika at the hospital

 


Start of the Movement to Value Life

2006

 January 1 Sent a New Year’s postcard with the words “Because it’s only one life…” to a friend.
 February 23 Along with Shuhei Tomita and High School students who learned about the words on a postcard, they meet with Eika and her family in Kyushu. The students were encouraged and received hope from Eika when they were trying to cheer her up.
The students started to collect words completing Eika’s words, “Because it’s only one life…”
 March Eika and her parents are told by the doctor that cancer has spread to her lungs and there is no further treatment and that Eika has less than a year to live.
 April Eika practices riding a bicycle at Yamashita Park in Yokohama.
 May 1 School excursion to Nara. The school grants special permission for Eika’s mom to accompany her daughter. Eika selects a bicycle course.
 June 22 The family goes to Okinawa due to Eika’s wish to see the blue ocean.
 July 1 Stops by Kyushu from Okinawa. A reporter from the Nishinippon Shimbun (“West-Japan newspaper”), who attended the welcoming party for Eika, is deeply touched by Eika and interviews her.
 July 3 The family visits Mr. Katsumoto’s home on their way back home from Kyushu and discusses Eika’s future. They decide to grant as many wishes they can for Eika while she concentrates on her treatment. At this time, they promise to take her to Europe, which had been her dream.
 July 5 An article about Eika with her picture and explanation of the movement is published in the Nishinippon Shimbun.
Her parents demanded to have details, such as her name, illness name, and current condition, not included in the article in order to respect Eika’s privacy as she fought cancer.
 July 15 Ms. Hiroko Iwasaka, a radio personality at Kurume-city Community FM Station, read the article in the newspaper and was so touched that she talked about it on her show. A great number of responses came from the listeners and words finishing Eika’s words, “Because it’s only one life…,” started to be delivered to the radio station.
 September 8 With the consent of the doctor and support from staff members in Tokyo, Eika and Yuko – her mom – traveled to Europe to let Eika recuperate for two months. They visited a village in Switzerland, where Heidi, Girl of the Alps (Heidi’s Years of Wandering and Learning) took place; Tyrol in Austria; and Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany. Eika saw magnificent nature and western buildings for the first time. She went back to Japan feeling hopeful as her world had just broadened.
October 23 Eika performed alto at a chorus for her school’s music festival.
 December 1 First reading session held. Various reading sessions have been held all over Japan every since.


New Year Postcard with words, “Because it’s only one life…”

New Year Postcard with words, “Because it’s only one life…”

Practice riding the bicycle

Practice riding the bicycle

At a beach in Okinawa

At a beach in Okinawa

Park near Mr. Katsumoto’s house

Park near Mr. Katsumoto’s house

Visit to Europe

Visit to Europe


2007

 May 1 Eika starts her hyperthermia therapy for three months and desired effects are seen.
 May 20 Staff members in Tokyo invite Eika and her mom to see Shiki Theatre Company’s Lion King.
 June 2 Eika goes to a cello concert for the first time after meeting her father’s friend who is a cellist. She hands the cellist a bouquet of flowers at the concert.
 July 5 One of the staff members from Osaka who fought cancer visited Tokyo and talked about her experience to Eika and her parents.
 July 22 Her condition worsens. She is hospitalized at Teikyo University School of Medicine University Hospital in Mizunoguchi once again.
 July 26 Eika’s friends and youth staff in Tokyo visit Eika at the hospital.
 August 8 Eika finished her drawing of a rainbow from the top of her bed.(She had been working on it since August 7.)
 August 14 She gave a strawberry-shortcake made from origami (folding paper) to her nurse, and this became her last good-bye with a smile.
 August 15 Eika goes in critical condition at 4 a.m. At 9:26 a.m., she ends her 16 years and 4 months of her life as her parents and Mr. Katsumoto watch over her.
 August 21 Eika’s funeral takes place with the help from the members in Tokyo.
 September 30 First reading session held in Tokyo.
 November 20 A city news reporter visits the Nishio Residence and interviews them to place an article in the Yomiuri Shimbun (newspaper).


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eika drawing a rainbow

Eika drawing a rainbow


2008

 November 11 An NHK cameraman visits and interviews the Nishio Family to broadcast on NHK TV news.
 January 30 Introduced in an NHK program for Kyushu and Okinawa areas called Good Morning Japan.
 February 28 Eika’s name, picture, and her words of “Because it’s only one life…” are introduced on NHK’s nationally broadcast program called News Watch 9.
October 13 Along with messages sent by listeners, a message from Eika’s father is also introduced on NHK Radio 1’s special program called Radio Day: Thoughts on Life.


 

Broadcasted on News Watch 9

Broadcasted on News Watch9


2009

Due to cooperation from Eika’s parents, many reading sessions are held all over Japan.

 August 3 Along with Shuhei Tomita and staff from Japan, they interact with staff members from Europe in Switzerland to prepare for the reading session in Europe.
November 21 A meeting was held to discuss future activities and a plan to become an incorporated association is considered. In order to expand activities throughout Japan and overseas. Possibilities to establish the headquarters in Tokyo are explored.


 

Eika

With staff members in Europe


2010

 May 4 Reading session is held in Musashino-city, Tokyo (Staff in Kyushu and Tokyo work together)
 June 27 Reading session is held in Osaka

Start of the Only One Life -Live It! Association

 July 7 Registration of the Only One Life - Live It! Association
Under the slogan, “Let’s pass on Eika’s will and transmit a message of the importance of life to the world,” we aim to expand the movement and accelerate operations overseas.
 August Start new preparations for overseas activities
 December 5 Only One Life – Live It! participates in a charity art exhibition for the Haiti Earthquake.
Paintings by Yuko Nishio, Chairwoman of the Only One Life – Live It!, Mr. Katsumoto and artwork by staff members in Tokyo are exhibited. Haitian Ambassador to Japan also attends and interacts with attendants.
 December 10 A play is performed in Tokyo. Many staff members in Tokyo took part in the play, which had a theme of the “Importance of Friendship and Life”.
 December 15 Decision reached to establish an organization to prevent suicide in South Korea. The encounter of the Secretary General of an AIDS extermination federation (South Korea) and Mr. Katsumoto, who promoted AIDS Prevention Movement, led to this decision.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Charity Art Exhibition

Charity Art Exhibition

Eika

Theater play pleading for the importance of friendship and life


2011

 April 3 First reading session held after Only One Life – Live It! Association is established.
This day was also Eika’s 20th birthday and the young staff members got ready for a fresh new start. Young members from overseas such as Switzerland, Italy, Nepal, and Benin expressed their support.
 April 14 Second reading session held in Tokyo.
 April 24 Third reading session held in Tokyo.
 May 4 Fourth reading session held in Tokyo.
 May 13 Declaration Ceremony of the Head Office of the Culture Movement for Loving Life takes place at the National Assembly of South Korea.
Because the organization was established by the support of Japan, Mr. Katsumoto and Mr. Nishio, Eika’s father, are invited to the ceremony and give a commemorative speech. They plead for the importance of life and pledge that Korea and Japan will cooperate to prevent suicides.
 May 17 Have a meeting with the Ambassadors of Benin, Haiti, and Nepal to the United Nations in New York and proposed to hold a United Nations Forum pleading for the preciousness of life (three participants from Only One Life – Live It! including Mr. Katsumoto).
Visit Haiti, have a meeting with the head of the National Police, give a speech at a university, and have a meeting with the president of the university.
 May 25 Start preparation for a reading session in Rome, Italy.
 May 28 A small reading session is held in Osaka.
 June 1 Mr. Kazuo Imamura, current chairman of the Japan Society of Humanistic Anthropology Association, is appointed as the chief advisor to Only One Life – Live It!Mr. Imamura previously served as the chairman of the Tokyo Suicide Prevention Center and served several years as an overnight telephone counselor.
 June 9 Visited the Tokyo Metropolitan Government and sought their cooperation.
 June 14 Visited the Cabinet Office and sought their cooperation.
 July 2 A small reading session held in Osaka.
 July 14 Received approval that the metropolitan government will become a sponsor for a reading session that will be held at Nogata Kumin Hall in Nakano, Tokyo. Indicate the metropolitan government’s sponsorship in flyers, posters, and programs.
 July 25,26 Five staff members are invited and attend the United Nations High-Level Meeting on Youth in New York.
 July 28 Introduced Only One Life – Live It! activities to UNESCO office at the United Nations in New York. They have great expectations for our future activities.
 August 5 Recommendations received from Mr. Shozo Nakajima, the legal advisor of the Japan Society of Humanistic Anthropology Association. He is an attorney and former public prosecutor of the Special Investigative Squad at the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office.
 August 11 First European reading session held in Switzerland. Young staff members in Switzerland, who knew Eika, organized the reading session.Received great responses with plans to hold the next reading sessions underway.
 August 14 Article on the next reading session is published in the morning edition of the Yomiuri Shimbun (newspaper).
 August 15 Reading session held at Nogata Kumin Hall in Nakano, Tokyo.
Because this was the day Eika passed away and Japan’s last day of war, August 15 was named as Day of Life. Formal sponsorships received from the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, the Republic of Benin, and the Republic of Haiti.
Former Haitian Ambassador to Japan also attended. He realizes the significance of holding reading sessions.
Theme song Love and Life Is the Same Thing is performed.
Booklet Love and Life Is the Same Thing is made.
 August 17 As part of the business to strengthen urgent countermeasures to prevent suicides in the Tokyo region for 2011, a decision to hold a reading session at the Bureau of Social Welfare and Public Health in Tokyo is made.
 August 23 At a meeting with a former Haitian Ambassador to Japan, he informs us that he would recommend implementing the reading sessions at Haitian schools.
 September 3 With help from university students and professors in the Philippines, preparations to establish an organization to value life are made. Office in the Philippines is established.
 September 8 Visit the Croatian Embassy to Japan.
 September 9 Produce booklet The Importance of Family.
 September 20 Reading session held during the second part of the First Helper Training in 2011 at the Musashino City Government Office.
 October 4-7 Only One Life – Live It! movement is introduced and messages are read for four days on a radio program in Hawaii, U.S.A.









Reading session held to commemorate Eika’s birthday

Reading session held to commemorate Eika’s birthday

Declaration Ceremony of Culture Movement for Loving Life Campaign in South Korea

Declaration Ceremony of Culture Movement for Loving Life Campaign in South Korea

Mr. Kazuo Imamura, Chief Advisor

Mr. Kazuo Imamura, Chief Advisor

Visit UNESCO Liaison Office at the United Nations in New York

Visit UNESCO Liaison Office at the United Nations in New York

First Reading Session in Switzerland

First Reading Session in Switzerland

Article Published on Reading Session in the Morning Edition of the Yomiuri Shimbun (newspaper)

Article Published on Reading Session in the Morning Edition of the Yomiuri Shimbun (newspaper)

Reading Session held and named August 15 as Day of Life

Reading Session held and named August 15 as Day of Life

Booklet Love and Life Is the Same Thing

Booklet Love and Life Is the Same Thing

Reading Session to be held at Haitian Schools

Reading Session to be held at Haitian Schools

Booklet The Importance of Family

Booklet The Importance of Family