750,000 Memories Making a Difference

I love photography and capturing precious or beautiful moments in time, so I really like this unique project which started organically as part of the clean-up mission after the Japan Tsunami. Basically thousands of photo’s where collected, restored and digitised with the aim of returning these precious memories to those who they belong to.

The aim of the ‘Lost And Found’ Project is to connect people who are willing to help, however small, and the people of the town of Yamamoto who were devastated by the tsunami, by providing opportunities for people in different places to experience the disaster through seeing the photos which were damaged beyond recognition.

“There are still 1,000 families having to live in temporary shelters today.”

Through what started out as the the ‘Memory Salvage Project‘, people collected over 750,000 photos that had been swept away in the tsunami, and now through the ‘Lost & Found Project’, these photos are shown at exhibitions and sold as posters, with all the funds going back into the local towns to help with housing and rebuilding left completely devestated by the disaster back in 2011. Yamamoto was one of the worst hit towns with over 50% of the town flooded, thousands of buildings ruined and over 600 people who died from the town.

We all take photographs. A few special ones are cherished, and the rest forgotten. We take pictures when we are having fun, when we want immortalize a moment shared with another person. The photographs you see here were also taken under those circumstances. The depth of emotion might vary from snap to snap, but each one captures a point in time that somebody wanted to keep.

It seems that the organisers didn’t necessarily set out to start anything too big, but I love it that this whole project just started organically by people collecting the photos and it gained momentum, and evolved into something more significant just because people were willing to chip in and help out.

I was impressed by how many people are willing to offer help for the victims of the East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, if given an opportunity.

I have seen how small help rendered by each one of these people found owners of the photographs collected from the rubble.

So if you are given the opportunity, it never hurts to chip in and help out, even if it seems insignificant… you never know – you might be play a small part in starting something bigger!

Find out more about the project at the Lost & Found Project website.


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