2 Hour Volunteering at Kuchita (Asa-Kita-ku) Hiroshima

If you are keen to volunteer to help landslide clean-up in Hiroshima, even for only a couple of hours, a good place to start is the town of Kuchita in Asa-minami-ku. 

First time volunteers should have a look at this English Volunteering Handbook. Or see a list of the pages of the English Handbook for Landslide Disaster Volunteering here on Inbound Ambassador.

Above is a discussion I had with Jamie, a volunteer who joined me from the Iwakuni base for a couple of hours on 7/17.

Volunteering at Kuchita is highly recommended if you are keen to help out. The local volunteers are very welcoming and are sponsoring insurance for any volunteers for the first month (so at least until August 7th), so if you haven’t yet signed up for the volunteer insurance (6F BIG FRONT building opposite Hiroshima station, M-F, 9-5) for 350 yen for the year, it’s no problem. I was a bit worried about only being able to volunteer for a short time, but the people at check-in assured me that they were very grateful for the help for however long we could.

Kuchita town is a short 20-minute drive from Hiroshima station. Or a 30-minute bus [340 yen] including a 10-minute walk, or only 22 minutes by JR train (Geibi line) but you will need to check if the line is open. To get there, the best advice is to follow Google maps as well as any local information from your guest house or hotel (address and map below).

As you are guided to the area where your group is assigned to help, you walk past thousands of mud-filled bags. Each of these takes at least 10 minutes to fill by hand by volunteers, so the view of thousands of these bags shows progress. These bags will be taken to areas where there is a danger of future flooding to help stabilize areas or block water from others.

Seeing the mud-line high above our heads showing the level the landslide came through the neighborhoods is a powerful reminder of the disaster’s effect on these neighborhoods.

Our work of clearing the drains between houses could only be done by hand. It was easier when the mud is a bit wet (out of the sun) and harder when the mud is dried and hard (in the sun). This was taken at 10 days post-disaster, so as the weeks progress, especially without rain, the volunteer work will become more and more dusty so it is a good idea to have a face-mask handy.

Once the mud was in the bags, we used the wheelbarrow to transport them a short distance to a pile at the front of the house. A truck will then come by and collect the bags to be taken and used in other areas in danger of flooding. 

Appliances and furniture soaked by mud are piling up in empty lots in neighborhoods waiting to be collected for recycling or disposal. Having enough space for this waste is a huge problem in disaster areas according to the news.

If you arrive by bus, there will be a 10-15 minute walk to the volunteer center (there may be taxi’s around – say “Kuchita-Shogak-ko” to find the volunteer registration tent). If you are driving, there is free parking for volunteers at the Kuchita Elementary School in the open yard, right next to the Volunteer Check-in.

First time volunteers should have a look at this English Volunteering Handbook. Or see a list of the pages of the English Handbook for Landslide Disaster Volunteering here on Inbound Ambassador.

  • Are you ready to Volunteer? Good idea before volunteering to read the 5-points of advice here.
  • Kuchita volunteer check-in open Everyday 8:30am – 5pm / Free insurance for any volunteer for the first month / Need to write your address (in Japan), Name, Age and how long you want to volunteer on the form. 
  • Address in English: 739-1733 Hiroshima-ken, Hiroshima-shi, Asa-Kita-Ku Kuchita-Minami 2-chome 7-2
  • Japanese: 〒739-1733 広島県広島市安佐北区口田南2丁目7−2


Writing about Hiroshima for over twenty years. Co-founded GetHiroshima in 1999 and founded the sustainability-focused InboundAmbassador business in 2019. Monthly CleanUp and Seeking Sustainability event organizer, guide workshop facilitator, online content creator and tourism destination consultant. Passionate about promoting solutions in Japan for people and the planet.

5 thoughts on “2 Hour Volunteering at Kuchita (Asa-Kita-ku) Hiroshima

  • July 18, 2018 at 1:41 pm

    Great report! I hope to make it down for a few days next week.

    • July 18, 2018 at 2:52 pm

      thanks for your comments & commitment to help! I have heard of a place people can stay if they are willing to travel out of the city a little to an area in great need of volunteers. Please let me know if you are interested and I can forward your email to the hosts and coordinators for the area [Team Aki / Rikuzen Takata Dream Support on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/yumeoendan/permalink/1767035953372953/%5D. They say there is “a house in Yoshida that is clean and empty. People can take a bus to Yoshida. The house is walking distance to combini, restaurants and food shopping. Bring your own sleeping bag and towels, etc. The bus is from Hiroshima bus center. Transportation from the house to the site is available. There might be a small fee for staying at the house to cover water and electricity.” The area is a 90 minute bus ride to Yoshida in Asa-kita-ku. Locals would be very grateful for the help. Address: Yoshidacho Yoshida, Akitakata, Hiroshima Prefecture 731-0501

  • September 10, 2019 at 11:47 pm

    I’m living in Zushi kanagawa I speak Japanese I would love to lend a hand ,please advise I can get to Shinn yokohama to Hiroshima then I have to find people please direct me I have cooking experience as well as physical labor,I just want to do for my country,I have been in the US Army and am willing to give my all for two weeks
    Charles E Williams

    • September 12, 2019 at 12:38 pm

      Hi Charles
      thanks for your kind offer to come and help, there are no volunteer activities open to the public that I know about, but if I hear of a disaster volunteering activity in Hiroshima, I will let you know. There may be other volunteer projects around Japan this year.

  • September 10, 2019 at 11:50 pm

    I want to help immediately I just went through a Typhoon in Zushi ,yokohama area please send information thanks and god bless us all.


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