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There is a way of thinking that one's kindness to others inspires another one.
Since I saw the racial discrimination with my own eyes in South Africa when I was in elementary school, I have always been interested in international cooperation. While traveling all over the world, I was thinking what truly meaningful international cooperation was. However, I didn't plan to get involved in international cooperation.I thought as follows: even if I go to a developing country and work hard as a medical doctor, I could save several hundred people at most. When actually millions of people are dying of starvation and sickness, it would be a drop in the ocean. Furthermore, after I finish a term of a half, two, or however many years and come back to Japan, everything will revert to how it was before I went.To improve developing counties by (forcing upon them) modern civilization, their economies may grow and their GNPs may rise. By using Western medicine, their mortality rate may improve. However, does this make the people in developing countries happy? There must be people who are happy enough doing only agriculture and living a short life. This is what I thought.However, I thought as follows when I became thirty years old."If I thoroughly train the local staff members and make their level of medical technique nearly the same as mine, they will be able to maintain the medical services by themselves. And in the future, they will save countless people.""I learn their local language, history and cultures so as not to make the local people feel Western culture is forced on them. If I think about what international cooperation means, taking into account their language, history, and culture, it will at least not be a one-way imposition.In order to put my ideas into practice, I started my involvement in international medical assistance.I went to a small African country called Sierra Leone where the life expectancy was only 34 years. I learned the local language and trained the hospital staff members whenever I found time. Since more than 70% of the people in the country did not go to school and could not read, it was very difficult to train them to be at the level of Japanese nurses. Due to the everyday training and regular exams, they had acquired sufficient medical technique by the time I left there. As a result, though several years have past since I left, the hospital which I helped establish continues to be well maintained by the local people.After that, I went to Afghanistan in the Middle East. Again, I learned their language, helped them as a medical doctor and educated the medical staff members. However, the situation was different from Sierra Leone because civil war was still going on. Because of the war, the hospital we had established was about to be destroyed, and the staff members we had trained were about to be killed. In the end, for meaningful international cooperation to continue into the future, I have realized that it is very important to eliminate war from the world.From these experiences, I have decided to launch an NGO, Earth the Spaceship ( ETS ) , based on the following concepts.There are a variety of people living in the world with differences rooted in such things as religion, race, gender, and culture. When we have contact with those who are different from us, we often think they are wrong. Isn't this a problem?If we understand the differences among different kinds of people and that the differences represent the unique history and culture of their country or nation, we may be able to decrease wars.Children are influenced by their parents and school teachers as well as their experiences in their own society as they grow up. And they tend to believe their world is the only world.Before this happens, we, the members of ETS, want to give children a nice little memory which teaches them that people in any country try to make an effort to be happy in their own societies and cultures so that they can spend a wonderful life.Above all, we want children to know that people all over the world share laughter with their precious family.Plans of Earth the Spaceship ( ETS )To make picture books for children introducing a variety of different people in the world To make a common world history book containing not only western history, but also the history of all the countries throughout the world To try to find the best educational curriculum that does not brainwash or force any particular culture upon children To have an event in which children all over the world draw their most important thing To compare world religions to find out the common beliefs or tenets of human beings.

Representative:Toshiharu Yamamoto, M.D. & Ph. D.

In the world there are many people. They are made up of variety of different races, religions and life-styles. One of the reasons human beings engage in wars and conflicts is that we sometimes cannot understand people with different ideas, values and cultures to our own. If the world is to be a better and safer place, all nations should acknowledge and accept these differences.For example in terms of religions:No matter what religion people believe in, we should all respect each other. Whether it be Muslim, Christian or Buddhist, we are all equal as human beings. There are people who base their beliefs on science and we should respect these people and also those who believe in no religion at all. All the different ways of spending your life are wonderful. We should accept and respect other people's beliefs and different ways of life.We should accept not only different religions, but also different life-styles, cultures and systems of politics and economics. We need to recognize these differences and respect e other's unique culture.Earth the Spaceship ( ETS ) would like to produce a picture book for children all over the world. In this book we will present different cultures, religions, ways of life and the variety of people's happiness.In the second half of the book, another truth will be described. Even if we believe in different religions, even if we were born in different countries, the basic ethics of human beings are the same all over the world. The basic ethics of all people are "Do not kill people", "Do not steal other people's belongings", "Cooperate with your friends", "Help the poor","Help people who are in a miserable situation". These basic ethics are the same all over the world. We are people who can understand each other.Now, our organization, ETS would like to propose making a new picture book for young children all over the world. The contents of the book are described below.There are a variety of races, religions, political systems, life-styles and cultures. People in the world are different, but we should understand and respect each other.The basic ethics of people all over the world.We all have the same ideas in terms of our basic values.Our NGO would like to inform young children all over the world about this concept. To reach as many people all over the world as possible, we're going to make a Picture Book or a Picture Book made up of Photographs. This will mean we can reach people with low reading skills and even those people who cannot read.We will translate this book into one hundred and sixty languages and publish it in one hundred and sixty countries.We aim to be neutral in terms of politics, and religion. Our NGO, ETS is non-profit making organization.The concept described above is the original idea of "ETS". However, as the members have increased, our activities have been widened.We now have four plans:A picture book describing the diversity of the world. This is the book described above.A common world history book.Not only Western History, but also the history of developing countries. Each country's history should be included evenly.The minimum requirement for education.Any education can be (in a sense) "brainwashing". Teachers may push children into understanding their own personal ideas or their culture. We have to be cautious. We will promote a minimum requirement for children?fs education.Art and how it affects the world.We are going to visit 160 countries. We are going to ask one hundred children in each country "What is the most important thing to you?" We will then ask children to paint or draw pictures of "What is the most important thing to you?" We will also take photographs of the children's faces, their houses, their town and the scenery in their country. (The target age of children is from six to ten years.) All the pictures from one hundred and sixty countries will be collected. We will make a one-hour promotion video for a presentation. We will also make a "symphony" using one hundred and sixty unique instruments collected form each of the one "hundred and sixty countries." The symphony will be played as the background music to the video.The goal of plan four is to show people the diversity in the world. So, the concept and plan for number four is similar to the plan for number one. However the goal of number four is much easier to understand. Therefore, we have put the first priority on plan number four. The short version of this video will be released at the end of 2004.There is also one more activity we are doing. We are doing a lot of free lectures for children. We are showing them the terrible situation in Africa, the Middle East, North Korea and other counties. We are also working with a lot of NGOs to show them activities for the poor people.In our lectures to children, we also explain environmental problems and how they affect people and animals. So, the purpose of these lectures is to show that everybody on the earth should work together for the betterment of all living things.People can work in different ways to achieve these goals. Helping patients in Africa, as a doctor or nurse is one way. Another way is to invent something to help protect the environment. For example a new energy source that we can use instead of fossil fuel and atomic energy. Other people may help by thinking and developing a new and better political system for the internationalized world. Whatever people do, we will ask children to do something for the world, for themselves and for the future of all people.

writen by Toshiharu Yamamoto


Toshiharu Yamamoto,M.D., Ph. D., Photographer, born on Dec.8 1965 in Sendai,Miyagi-Pref.Japan graduated Tokyo Jikei Medical school

Since the experience of the racial discrimination in South Africa at the age of 12, visited over 60 countries including many developing countries like Afghanistan,taking photos and held exhibitions all over the world.

1990 acquired M.D.licence 1996 Ph.D 1998-2001 worked for Seibu Jin clinic as the director
2001 participated in the urgent medical aid in Sierra Leone
2002 participated in the urgent medical aid in Afghanistan
2003 launched an NGO, All Children's Textbooks for the World
2004 Aug.1 changed the name of the NGO into Earth the Spaceship (ETS)
2004 Dec. ETS was authorized as NPO by Tokyo Metropolitan Government

Pursuiting the most essential aids for the suffered people in the forefront. published many books, The country with the shortest life span,The Afghanistan she dreamed of,etc.