After 40 kilometers a day, seven hours per day for 31 days, including seven days for rest the final stretch of one man’s quest will end at the Olympic Cauldron in Vancouver on July 26.
On June 19, 2011, Steve Johnson, a teacher from St. Albert, Alberta along with his wife, Yoshimi began “Gambaro Japan” – a Walk for Japan. With the news of the disaster in Japan fading from the headlines, Johnson’s goal is to inspire Canadians as well as send a message of hope and strength to the people in Japan.
Johnson spent 8 years living and teaching in Japan, returning to Canada several months before the earthquake and tsunami caused the devastation.
Feeling a deep sense of sadness for those affected, Johnson felt he had to do something to help. “Gambaro Japan” has given Johnson the opportunity to share his experiences with Japanese culture on a broader scale, allowing him to connect the people he meets with that culture as well as with disaster relief efforts.
Wednesday, July 20 brought the couple to Princeton during the later afternoon.
They stopped to picnic at the Chamber of Commerce/Tourist Information Centre, and to decide upon a place to stay and rest for the evening. The trek towards Hope would begin the next day.“Canadians are great”, stated Johnson, “they have a genuine/decent sense of sympathy for global causes.” It is Johnson’s hope that throughout his ‘walk and talk’—Canadians will continue to “take action” and support Japan whether it be via a donation or participation in relief efforts of any kind.
Links for donations, disaster relief projects as well as more information on “Gambaro Japan” – walk for Japan, can be found by visiting http://walkforjapan.blogspot.com.
Travel well, Steve and Yoshimi—thank you for your efforts and for sharing your experiences.