Peace Crane Project Flyer
A THOUSAND PEACE CRANES FOR THE PEOPLE OF JAPAN
The images from Japan in March were difficult to watch as a massive earthquake and tsunami swept across the island. Thousands were killed, whole towns vanished, and the survivors were left with rubble that will take years, if ever, to rebuild.
Looking for a way to reach out to the Japanese people, a local Tamworth couple began an effort they called the “Peace Crane Project” through an international arts organization. Jeff and Sharon Malenfant began by asking members of the International Union of Mail Artists (IUOMA) to help make one thousand origami paper cranes. At the Hiroshima Memorial Peace Museum, there is a children’s peace monument area where they hang the giant loops of cranes that are received from all over the world. The goal of the local project is to send a thousand paper cranes to the museum for the well-being of the Japanese people in time for the one-year anniversary of the earthquake.
On Saturday, Oct. 1, from 11am-1pm, the community is invited to join this effort at Cook Memorial Library in Tamworth. Children and adults of all ages are invited to come and learn how to make origami cranes and help string them together. All materials will be provided. People who are unable to attend are welcome to make cranes and drop them at the library.
The idea is based on an ancient Japanese legend which promises that anyone who folds a thousand origami paper cranes will be granted a wish by a crane, such as long life, healing, or recovery from injury and illness. In Japan, it is commonly said that folding and stringing a thousand paper cranes makes a person’s wish come true. “Our hope is that the cranes offer a message of healing for the Japanese people as they struggle to recover their lives and land,” Jeff said. In Japan, the crane is one of the most mystical or holy creatures and is said to live for a thousand years.
Since the project began, hundreds of paper cranes have arrived in Tamworth from many countries in Europe and South America, as well as from around the United States. They came in every size and are made from many different types of paper, including handmade paper from Japan, Greek magazines, and Starburst wrappers, to name a few. Several IUOMA artists created collages that incorporated cranes into the artwork. Students from a special education class in South America made cranes and wrote messages on them to the Japanese people.
The program is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Amy at Cook Memorial Library, 323-8510. Here is a YouTube video of people making cranes On Oct 1st.
Image by Dimitri Karlaftopoulos of Greece
Peace Crane Project Flyer