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Starting Young - Teaching Children's Rights in Tanzania

We promote Child Rights Clubs in schools, covering issues such as child marriage, FGM, domestic violence, disabilities, street children.... Last year, 7000 children participated...



50 Years on: The Military Regime, Slaughter, and Torture in Brazil

Brazil is remembering the 50 years since the military regime which began on 1st April 1964 and continued until 1985. The political scene here is that we are facing people who want those dangerous times back....



Empowering Survivors in DR Congo

Help Safe World Field Partner, COFAPRI, to support rape survivors and their children in the mountain villages of Eastern DR Congo.

World News

Frederic Kazigwemo served time in jail for killing several people in 1994 | Photo: Benjamin Duerr/Al Jazeera

Rwanda genocide survivors back reconciliation

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Caroline Murphy

UK Heiress walks away from fortune after rift over her plans to turn firm into a co-operative

I have been vocal in my belief that leadership of this business must include those working on the ground if it is to continue to deliver for the clients who have placed their trust in us over the years.

International Women's Media Foundation: 'Protect Confidentiality of Sources'

IWMF (International Women's Media Foundation) urges the Supreme Court to recognize journalists' protection against compelled disclosure of confidential sources...
Pari Gul

The Afghan policewomen taking on the Taliban

The tiny but growing number of policewomen in Afghanistan not only risk death in the line of duty, they also face personal attack from extremists, and bigotry within the ranks

Field Partner News

Alliance News


Partnering for advocacy in rural Kenya

Pastoralist Child Foundation and the Fly Sister Fly Foundation partnered for an advocacy campaign in Samburu County. They held interactive sessions on early marriages, FGM/C, and challenges girls face in the pastoral nomadic community.

Elderly Fukushima woman kills herself


Elderly Fukushima woman kills herself
'to evacuate to the grave'

Her son and his wife told the Mainichi Daily News, "Please tell your readers why she killed herself."

July 9, 2011

MINAMISOMA, Fukushima -- A 93-year-old woman, dejected over the ongoing nuclear crisis, was found hanged at her home in Minamisoma, Fukushima Prefecture, in late June, leaving behind suicide notes that said in part, "I will evacuate to the grave. I am sorry."

After hydrogen explosions at the Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant in March, the woman was forced to evacuate to the house of her second daughter in Soma and was later hospitalized for two weeks before returning May 3 to her house in Minamisoma, subject to a possible emergency evacuation order due to the nuclear disaster.

Worried about further evacuations

"If we have to evacuate again, elderly people (like me) will become a drag," her suicide note said.

The elderly woman, whose identity was kept confidential to protect her privacy, lived with her 72-year-old son and his 71-year-old wife and two grandchildren in a quiet rice paddy district. Her son said she kept herself busy with daily chores despite her weak feet and also kept diaries.

After the hydrogen explosions at the nuclear power plant, about 22 kilometers from her house, she and her family left Minamisoma on March 17. She took refuge at her daughter's house in Soma while her son and his family moved into a guest house in Katashina, Gunma Prefecture, on March 18.

She was hospitalized in late April. After two weeks of treatment, she returned to her house on May 3rd and frequently telephoned her son and his family in Gunma Prefecture, asking them to come back.

Her son and his family finally returned home on the night of June 6, and she happily greeted them. But the son told his mother that they may have to evacuate again if the nuclear accident gets worse.

Found hanged in the garden

About two weeks after the five-member household resumed living together, the 93-year-old woman was found hanged in the garden on June 22.

Her four suicide notes addressed to her family, ancestors and a close neighborhood friend were later found in the house. "My heart is in my mouth everyday due to news of the nuclear power plant," she wrote to her family.

"Doing things like this (killing myself), I am disgracing my children and grandchildren and relatives, but it cannot be helped in this day and age," said her note to her parents.

After her death, neighbors frequently come to her house to pray. Her neighborhood friend, to whom one of her suicide notes was addressed, choking up with tears, asked, "Why did this have to happen to her?"

'Really hard for elderly people to evacuate'

A 74-year-old former priest of Ganoku Temple in Minamisoma who recited a sutra at her funeral, said, "There are some evacuees who feel depressed after waking up and noticing different ceilings (from their own house). It's really hard for elderly people to evacuate."

Her son and his wife told the Mainichi, "Please tell your readers why she killed herself."