Mr. Clelia Nodari, teacher of Comezzano Cizzago Primary School, applied for the project because he wanted people to remember the atomic bombing and to send a message how strong life is by planting the tree.
For the tree planting ceremony, a special stage was built in the schoolyard and children gathered around the tennis court. A national flag of Japan was raised in the center of the stage and everyone applauded when Mr. Ebinuma was introduced. After the mayor made a speech, Mr. Ebinuma and another mayor made their speeches, and then children’s performances began. Upper graders sang and danced. Some also performed folk dance of the former Yugoslavia and Karate. Each upper grader took part in a performance by going around the site holding a white T-shirt with one’s own message and hanging it on a pole.
At the tree planting ceremony, a few children on behalf of the school put soil over the tree, which was still in a pot. Beside them, other children moved long cloths of green, white and red, the colors of the national flag of Italy, up and down to welcome the kaki tree.
After that the mayor presented the flag of the town to Mr. Ebinuma and Mr. Ebinuma in return presented Kaki Furoshiki (a wrapping cloth).
After the planting some more events were held such as the opening ceremony of Punto Acqua, a water fountain in the park near the school and an award ceremony of a sculpture exhibition in the town center.
An international humanitarian association, “World Without Wars,” initiated a project called “The World March for Peace and Nonviolence” in the autumn of 2008. Millions of people participated in the World March, which began on 2 October 2009 in New Zealand and ended on 2 January 2010 in Argentina.
Ms. Tiziana Volta, coordinator of the World March in Brescia initiated the tree planting at Istituto Comprensivo Statale “Leonardo da Vinci” in Castenedolo and Giosue Carducci Junior High School in L’Aquila in 2011.
Castenedolo is a comune (township) that is known for Valsella, the company manufactured anti-personnel mines until the mid 1990’s. To bring in the kaki tree, Ms. Volta had worked together with the board of education and cultural assessment?
) and principals in this school district. Already for one year, children have been learning deeply about the seedling of the bombed kaki tree and its historical significance with enthusiasm and proceeded with preparations.
As Mr. Ebinuma walked through the town guided by Ms. Volta and arrived at the planting site, Istituto Comprensivo Statale “Leonardo da Vinci,” many people including the mayor, Mr. Francesco had already gathered. On the glass door of the school building, a large picture of kaki tree was pasted and white origami cranes were scattered on the lawn. A work of kaki tree which was about the height of a man was also displayed in the middle of the schoolyard.
The tree planting ceremony started with a musical performance of flute, clarinet, xylophone, etc.
The presenter introduced Mr. Ebinuma and the explanation of the project was given, then speeches by the applicant, Ms. Tiziana Volta, Mr. Francesco, Mr. Ebinuma and the mayor followed. After that, 8 items such as poetry reading and singing by children from each school were performed.
Children put soil over the kaki tree which already had leaves.There was another musical performance after the planting and the Kaki Furoshiki was presented. Happy faces of children made an impressive tree planting ceremony.
Prior to the tree planting ceremony on 18 May 2011, children paraded in the morning carrying a big flag. Before the parade, they were informed about the Kaki Tree Project by Mr. Foletti Francesco of Consorzio Tavolo Della Pace Franciacorta-Monte Orfano and heard Mr. Ebinuma’s speech. The parade started from the big lawn in the park, took the long path in the park, passed through the town and arrived at the school. At the entrance of school building, a large kaki tree drawing was displayed and many small origami cranes, which were made by all the participants at the workshop on the day before, 17 May, were put in a basket. Everybody had lunch at the school and then the parade resumed. From here, the parade was led by police and approached the town center. A child mayor and Mr. Ebinuma joined the parade and walked in the front of the big flag that was written PACE. Children who were around the big flag and other children in the back held small PACE flags. They cheerfully arrived at the school, the planting site, despite the temperature exceeding 30 degrees Celsius.
At the school, there was a violin and clarinet performance and many people including the mayor were waiting there. They gave a big welcome when the children arrived.
A representative’s speech was followed by another musical performance, principal’s speech, performance of the national anthem of Japan, mayor’ speech, Mr. Francesco’ speech and Mr. Ebinuma’s speech. Then children recited poems, performed a dance, a song, another dance, recited Japanese a poem and the child mayor gave a speech. Children tried very hard and their performance were very nice.
Six pupil representatives put soil over the kaki seedling’s roots.
People involved in the local bread festival also took part in the event and they presented bread they baked to the mayor and Mr. Ebinuma. All the participants sang together the national anthem of Italy and took a group photo around the tree, and the great ceremony was concluded. Even after the ceremony, children asked to take photos and shake hands with Mr. Ebinuma.