Crowdfunding : Malawi Shiatsu Dojo

COUNTRY

Malawi

z

LANGUAGE

Francais/
English

Organisation

HEAD OF MISSION

Ivan Bel

contact

Email
Whatsapp +33 (0)6 95 53 75 94

Projet de levée de fond en français

Dans le cadre de MSH (Missions Shiatsu Humanitaire), nous voulons créer un Dojo pour développer le Shiatsu au Malawi. C’est facile, peu coûteux et rapide. Nous avons juste besoin de votre aide. Laissez-nous vous présenter le projet.

Les acteurs :

Tout commence par la rencontre de deux passionnés.

 

D’un côté Ivan Bel, professeur de Shiatsu, fondateur de MSH, qui vit à Lilongwe, la capitale du Malawi. De l’autre, Bahebe Dogani, professeur de karaté, qui vit dans la banlieue tranquille et arborée de Lilongwe. Les deux hommes se sont rencontrés à l’ambassade du Japon au Malawi et ne se sont jamais quittés depuis. Bahebe a suivi des cours de shiatsu pendant un an, puis a enseigné le karaté Shotokan dans deux locaux différents qu’ils louent.

Bahebe possède un grand terrain (3 hectares) rempli d’acacias et de manguiers géants autour de sa maison, qui lui procurent une bonne ombre lors des journées chaudes. Avec l’aide de ses élèves (une cinquantaine d’enfants et d’adolescents), il a creusé les fondations de son rêve : un dojo. Mais le projet s’arrête là, car la réalité du Malawi, c’est la pauvreté.

C’est là qu’Ivan entre en scène et lui propose de donner des cours de shiatsu et de l’aider à construire un dojo. Ce serait le premier dans tout le pays.

Le projet de Bahebe :

Bahebe n’est pas seulement un professeur de karaté. C’est aussi un homme au grand cœur. Il accueille gratuitement tous les enfants non scolarisés (50% des enfants) qui traînent dans les rues. La plupart d’entre eux connaissent la violence, les agressions de toutes sortes, l’alcool et la drogue. Il leur propose le marché suivant :

  • Les cours de karaté sont gratuits à condition qu’ils ne touchent plus jamais à la drogue et/ou à l’alcool.
  • Pour que les enfants deviennent quelqu’un, il fait constamment le tour des administrations pour récupérer de vieux ordinateurs. Son rêve est d’installer l’électricité dans le dojo et d’en faire une école d’informatique pendant la journée.
  • Les cours de shiatsu gratuits eux aussi, serviront à enseigner autre chose que la violence de la rue et la façon d’y répondre, mais à ouvrir les enfants à eux-mêmes, à leur permettre de pardonner et de se reconstruire.

Comme vous pouvez le constater, il ne s’agit pas seulement de l’intérêt d’une personne, mais d’un véritable projet humanitaire.

 

Construction :

L’idée est de continuer sur les fondations déjà creusées, d’une superficie de 250m2.

Un architecte bénévole a déjà fourni les plans et les devis sont prêts.

Coût total de l’opération : 3.000.000 Kwachas, soit… 3 000€.

Oui, vous avez bien lu, seulement 3 000€ pour les murs, le toit et le sol. Mais il faut dire qu’ici une bonne brique coûte 10 centimes. Avec 1€ vous obtenez 10 briques. Avec 10€, vous obtenez 100 briques. Ça peut aller très vite. Le plus cher est le bois, pour avoir des piliers et un plancher, car le pays souffre d’une désertification rapide. Nous le ferons venir de pays voisins comme la Zambie ou le Mozambique. Le toit sera fait de tôle, car il n’y a rien de mieux ici contre les pluies tropicales.

Gestion du projet :

L’argent ira directement à MSH et Ivan Bel sera le gestionnaire du projet sur place. Bahebe sera le chef de projet car réalisé sur son terrain, à côté de sa maison. Donc pas d’achat de terrain et pas de permis de construire, la législation est inexistante quand on sort de la ville.

  1. Si nous récoltons 3 000€, nous pourrons construire tout le bâtiment
  2. Si nous obtenons 5 000€, nous pourrons aussi faire un toit de chaume sur la tôle, ce qui protégera les enfants de la chaleur, et mettre des volets
  3. À 6 000€ (on peut rêver), nous pourrons amener l’électricité et préparer la classe informatique
  4. Au delà de 8 000€, c’est vraiment la fête ! On achète des ordinateurs d’occasion, des vêtements de karaté, de shiatsu, des stylos, des cahiers, et même une citerne d’eau pour hydrater tout ce petit monde.

Et après ?

Le dojo peut être construit en un mois. Ici, tout est possible avec un peu d’argent. Les cours se feront à tour de rôle entre Ivan et Bahebe. Les étudiants expatriés qui prennent des cours privés de Shiatsu dans la capitale prendront le relais (français, allemand, anglais…).

Grâce à ce dojo et aux contacts de Bahebe, nous allons ouvrir très rapidement un atelier régulier dans un camp de réfugiés qui regroupe des Burundais, des Rwandais et des Congolais, qui est sous contrôle du HCR. Les soins sont plus que sommaires et les tensions sont très fortes. Nous voulons y travailler pour aider les réfugiés à s’autonomiser et à apprendre à s’entraider de manière bienveillante.

Grâce à MSH, nous organiserons un voyage par an avec des volontaires et un ou plusieurs professeurs prêts à continuer à enseigner le Shiatsu et pourquoi pas, le karaté. Bahebe est très intéressé par la découverte d’autres formes de cet art martial. Puis d’aller dans le camp de réfugiés et de promouvoir le Shiatsu dans les écoles.

Maintenant, c’est à votre tour !

Un seul clic sur le bouton Leetchi ci-dessous et vous pouvez nous aider. Tout est automatisé et les transferts sont sécurisés. Vous ne payez pas tout de suite, mais uniquement lors du prélèvement. Mieux encore, sur Leetchi pas besoin d’atteindre un seuil. Dans tous les cas l’argent nous sera versé.

Alors pour eux comme pour nous, on compte sur vous !

Crowdfunding project in english

A Shiatsu Dojo in Malawi

As part of MSH (Missions Shiatsu Humanitaire), we want to create a Dojo to develop Shiatsu in Malawi. It’s easy, cheap and quick. We just need your help. Let us introduce you to the project.

The actors:

It all starts with the meeting of two enthusiasts practitioners.

On the one hand Ivan Bel, Shiatsu teacher, founder of MSH, who lives in Lilongwe, the capital of Malawi. On the other hand, Bahebe Dogani, a karate teacher, who lives in the quiet tree-lined suburbs of Lilongwe. The two men met at the Japanese Embassy in Malawi and have been together ever since. Bahebe has been taking Shiatsu classes for a year and is still in a learning process, and then teaching Shotokan Karate in two different locations he rents.

Bahebe has a large plot of land (3 hectares) full of giant acacia and mango trees around his house, which provide good shade on hot days. With the help of his students (about 50 children and teenagers), he dug the foundations of his dream: a dojo. But the project stopped there, because the reality of Malawi is poverty.

That’s where Ivan comes in and offers to give Shiatsu classes and help him build a dojo. It would be the first in the whole country.

Bahebe’s project:

Bahebe is not just a karate teacher. He is also a man with a big heart. He takes in all the out-of-school children (50% of the kids) who are lying around for free. Most of them know violence, aggression of all kinds, alcohol and drugs. He offers them the following deal:

– Karate lessons are free on the condition that they never touch any drugs and/or alcohol again.

– In order for the children to become somebody, he is constantly going through the administrations to collect old computers. His dream is to install electricity in the dojo and turn it into a computer school during the day.

– The shiatsu classes will be used to teach something other than the violence of the street and how to respond to it, but to open the children to themselves, to allow them to forgive and rebuild themselves.

As you can see, this is not just about the interest of one person, but truly a humanitarian project.

 

Construction:

The idea is to continue on the foundations already dug, which are 250m2 in size.

A volunteer architect has already provided the plans and the estimates are ready.

Total cost of the operation: 3,000,000 Kwachas, or… 3 000€.

Yes, you read that right, only 3 000€ for the walls, the roof and the floor. But it must be said that a good brick here costs 10 cents. With 1€ you get 10 bricks. With 10€ you get 100 bricks. It can go very fast. The most expensive thing is wood, to have pillars and a floor, because the country is suffering from rapid desertification. We will bring it from neighbouring countries like Zambia or Mozambique. The roof will be made of sheet metal, because there is nothing better here against the tropical rains.

Project management:

The money will go directly to MSH and Ivan Bel will be the on-site project manager. Bahebe will be the project manager as it will be done on his land, next to his house. So no purchase of land and no building permit, the legislation is pretty cool when you go out of town.

  1. If we raise 3 000€, we can build the whole building
  2. If we get 5 000€ we can also make a thatched roof over the metal sheet, which will protect the children from the heat, and put shutters
  3. At 6 000€ (we can dream) we can bring in electricity and prepare the computer classroom
  4. Beyond 8 000€, then it’s a crazy dream! We buy second-hand computers, clothes for karate, shiatsu, pens, notebooks, and even a water tank to hydrate all this little world.

What’s next?

The dojo can be built in a month. Here everything is possible with a little money. The classes will rotate between Ivan and Bahebe. The expat students who take private Shiatsu classes in the capital will take over (French, German, English…).

Thanks to this dojo and to Bahebe’s contacts, we are going to open very quickly a regular workshop in a refugee camp which gathers Burundians, Rwandans and Congolese, which is under UNHCR control. The care is more than basic and tensions are very high. We want to work there to help the refugees empower themselves and learn to help each other in a caring way.

Thanks to MSH, we will organise one trip per year with volunteers and teacher(s) ready to continue to teach Shiatsu and why not, karate. Bahebe is very interested in discovering other forms of this martial art. Then to go to the refugee camp and promote Shiatsu in schools.

Now it’s your turn!

One click on the Leetchi button below and you can help us. Everything is automated and the transfers are secure. You don’t have to pay right away, but only when the money is taken. Better still, on Leetchi there is no need to reach a threshold. In any case, the money will be paid to us.

So for them as for us, we count on you!

Get in touch!

11 + 2 =

By Nilsa Eberhart

I am Nilsa Eberhart, Shiatsu Practitioner. My voluntary work on the southwest of Puerto-Rico was not part of an organisation which offered therapies or classes for long periods of time in a remote location. It was the result of a spontaneous need to help our desperate brother and sisters in deep necessity of relief. This is what I will tell you now.

Earthquake

Monday, January 6, 2020 A 5.8 magnitude earthquake is registered off shore the southwest of Puerto Rico.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020 at 4:23:58 am: My cat woke me as she jumped off my bed and ran scared somewhere.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020 at 4:24 am: The earth shaked. A 6.4 magnitude tremor on the Richter scale was measured again of shore the southwest of Puerto Rico.

My bed was trembling and so was my heart. Half asleep I went to stand under a door frame, the pow-er went off, then the shaking it stopped. Twenty seconds that lasted an eternity. I ran out to the street where all my neighboors were out in their pijamas or just what they had on, afraid and confused. Going back to sleep seemed unthinkable being freightened of the aftershoks. All these questions were swirling in our minds, where was the epicenter?, are there damages,victims? Little we knew what was really going on.

Tuesday’s big quake, the strongest in a series of temblors that began in late December, struck at 4:24 a.m. five miles southwest of Tallaboa on Puerto Rico’s southwestern coast, according to the United States Geological Survey. A tsunami watch issued by the local authorities was quickly canceled but led to widespread concern anyway.

Photos of the aftermath started to flood the social media. The impact on the southwest from the Island had been cataclysmal. I live on the north side, in San Juan, the Capital of Puerto Rico. What we felt was just a fraction of what people experienced on the southwest. In my area we were lucky to be only around five days without electricity. The governor declared a state of emergency and activated the National Guard. More than 750 people fled their homes, and 300,000 were without power and water.

Saturday, January 11, 2020 Another quake of 5.9 magnitude is registered off shore the southwest of Puerto Rico. Hundreds of insessant aftershocks continued to keep the people in crippling anxiousness.

All of a sudden I find myself being part of a Whatsapp group called, “Terapeutas Unidos”, United Therapists. The group was founded by my very good friend, collegue and shiatsu student, Ramón García, whom I wish to honor by writing these lines. He is the real hero here, his love and selfless sense of dedication to help others will always be my inspiration. He passed in his sleep on April 13, 2020 at age My heart is tight and tears come to my eyes as I relive this experience.

Photo 1: (c) Daily express. Photo 2: (C) The Guardian. Photo 3: (C) BBC

Mobilization

For security reasons all the streets and highways to the southwest were blocked by the National Guard until the situation could be under control. Thousands without shelter, power or water. Around 8.460 refugees in twelve instalations were recorded. People camping on parking lots, green areas on high-ways, in front of their houses with their car full of belongings, everywhere they could be away from high structures.

The distrust of the people after the bad response of the authorities during hurricane Maria three years before, unleashed the most massive mobilization of aid from the people for the people ever seen. Caravans of hundreds of cars of all sizes carrying all kind of supplies, water, clothes, food, matresses, suplies for babies and the elderly, you name it, people overflowed trying to help their desperate compatriots.

My group was in one of those caravans. In the chat, everybody was reporting where help was needed and divided themselves in groups everyday to organize where they could go with the specific supplies and support to be offered. There were therapists from many different diciplines, body- and energy workers with the main thought in mind to bring releief and peace to the refugees. There were many other groups of doctors, naturopaths, nurses, lawyers, college students all wanting to help. A website was created to refer to and find out where was what exactly needed, this way excess an lack of the supplies in one area could be controlled. Here, some of my experiences.

Photo 1: long caravan of vehicles. Photo 2: Ramón García. Photo 3: Let's work! Photo 4: Nilsa Eberhart. Photo 5: Nilsa and Yakeem. Photo 6: Part of the courageous therapists

Shiatsu on the front line

Peñuelas

We would get together at 5:30 am at different parkings in Shopping centers on the way to the south. It was around a three hours drive with all the caravans and landslides blocklages. Ramón had his little car full to the top with fresh cooked meals, supplies and his massage table. He did not need any caravan and would go alone three or four times per week to the country side and mountains where nobody went, to bring water, donations, therapy, hugs and his big wide smile.

Around 20 therapists had agreed to go on this one Sunday at 5:30 am. The night before, I found myself trying to find any excuse not to head south. I felt saturated with all the fatalists, who in their wish to be extra precacious and careful generated too much fear.

I shaked those thoughts off and decided to go. Thinking of the training I had over ten years ago with Diego Sanchez on Shiatsu in emergecy situations, I said to myself, “Nilsa, you can do this, this is the moment to use that knowledge”. Had no idea what was I getting myself into.

Upon reaching the meeting spot, there were already dozens of cars from different groups loaded with supplies and sparkling contagious energy. All filled with a great desire to help in any way they could. What a blessing to be able to be a part of this, I thought. All my doubts from the night before had vanished. On the highway heading south, the number of trucks, pick-ups and cars of all sizes packed with supplies was impressive. Puertorricans have a huge heart and when one suffers, everybody responds showing that only united you generate the most powerful force.

We finally arrived in Peñuelas, at the old athletic track refugee camp, where there are more than 300 evacuees.

There are no words to describe the organization within the chaos. Hundreds of volunteers, National Guard, food and beverage companies, even volunteers from religious groups and a group from Venezuela for Puerto Rico were there giving their best trying to maintain logistics. Hundreds of cots crammed under giant tents, like at a summer camp. Families, the elderly, bedridden people, on wheelchairs, children running and playing. Musicians playing, other giving Bibles to rid them of evil thoughts, hairdressers and nail technicians, clowns, doctors, etc. Vehicles would come in non-stop to download supplies, and dozens of people were receiving, sorting and arranging them. Everybody could go and take what they needed.

In a place between the huge army tents we set up our two canopys and a tarp to make an extension. Our group had some yoga teachers and about 12 therapists working on tables and chairs. Little by little people of all ages began to approach us. They shared their stories and ventilated their sorrows. Some had lost everything, but they were all alive. Others had to evacuate their homes due to high structural danger or because the lived very close to the water. Others were there to spend the night. They hugged us for endless minutes and gave us so many blessings for being there. Inexpressible.

How do you hold your tears? Not possible...no need.

 

At the camp, even the smallest tremor was felt, and they were constant. An old granny told me, “when that weird wind comes and rains, then it trembles,” and so it happened. That Sunday it rained for the first time in weeks and many ran out looking for tarps to protect their space and the few things they had.

I was giving shiatsu sessions on my massage table, and really took the time to interview every single person that came to me, let them tell me their story. One father of five had time enough to run out of their house before the second floor came crashing down. He had not closed one eye in a week. After the session he slept for more than an hour. He woke up and thanked me so many times that he could sleep for a while and felt as if I had erased his fears... priceless. I worked on a young pregnant woman who was evacuated with her husband from their building, and was afraid for her baby because of all the anxiety she was experiencing. Then a 85 year old grandmother who lived near the water and could not close her hands. Teenagers, small children, volunteers all with stories that broke your heart. I noticed a teacher from a nearby school watching me work and asked me what was I doing. I explained about Zen Shiatsu, he had a big question mark on his face, never saw anybody work like me before.

The soldiers brought us chairs for the ones waiting in line to be treated and I overheard one young man asking one of the therapists about me...” but she works different, like she is doing other things”, she answered “yeeeeeah she works somehow different” that was something very cute to hear between all the despair. At some point there was a reporter wanting to interview some of us, so Yakeem Carrión, owner of the Artes Místicas Massage school, took the microphone, all of a sudden he turned to me and asked very loud, “Nilsa which you said was the name of our group?”, I opened my eyes and spitted out the first thing that came to my mind “Manos sin Fronteras”, Hands without Borders. He repeated it to the reporter, then came back to me gigling thanking me for saving the interview. I immediately wrote to the other administrator of the chat in Whatsapp telling him to please change the name, what he instantly did. So that is how the group’s name born.

We worked, hugged, cried, listened, talked and shared our love for a few hours. At around 4 pm, physically and emotionally tired, but undendlessly grateful, we began to pack, close and dismount, that’s when many decided they wanted last minute therapy, some of us decided stay a little longer. Waiting for us was long way back with a lot of traffic.

On the way to San Juan and talking with my colleague, we realized that it seemed as if we just came from another dimension, where we were totally disconnected from everything. Nothing else was more import-ant than being able to provide peace and expansion to our compatriots.

Yauco

The weekend after we were again at 5:30 am gathering at Montehiedra Shopping center to head back to the southwest. We had two pickup trucks so we could arrange supplies in one and our tables and materi-als in the other. This time we decided to go to the refugee camp at the Municipal Stadium in Yauco.

To our big surprise we found the people camping at the parking and hardly anyone in the stadium. So we opened our tents and arranged the tables and massage chairs right in the middle of the shelters.

People started to come much faster this time. Some of us went inside to the stadium to tell the people that we were offering therapies, the control was extreme and moving around freely was very controlled. No wonder people decided to stay outside. Still, there were many elderly laying on beds in the huge tents.

The shelters out in the parking were personal tents. People tried to arrange their few belongings how they could. Some went to the communal kitchen, some had BBQs to cook on. I worked on a few people who had been sleeping in their cars for the past three to four weeks. They refused to go home afraid of the shakes. Those who could go to work, went and came back to the camp in the evening.

This time we were eight. Yakeem Carrión had his guitar and played and sang with some of the kids. That brought smiles to their eyes. Ramón had his massage table and chair and would gravitate between them non-stop. He had brought coffee and food for all of us. Santosh, who studied a year with Ohashi was staring at me work and said,” lack the patience you have to do shiatsu, to let stuff rise up to youam more of a deep tissue mechanic”. This time we had Vivien Sanchez, who is a life-coach and reiki Master, she was doing a great job just talking to those who needed to be heard. There was also a freshly baked massage therapist who was so very grateful and overwhelmed by all the men and women he had the honor to treat.

Yauco again

About three weeks had passed and I went back to the Municipal stadium in Yauco with Yakeem Carrión and Karla Durán, a yoga teacher who wanted to work with the children. This time was different, we found ourselves working more with the volunteers, the soldiers and federal police officers since most of the refugees were gone.They had moved either back to their homes, those who could, or temporal homes, moved with family members or left the country.

The volunteers were exhausted, drained, suffered from imsomnia, anxiety, fear, grief at levels they could hardly handle. The first one I treated was a federal police officer who’s back was killing him. Then a soldier who was very sad that the children who were running after him all the time asking all kind of questions, were gone. One of the volunteers with a mixture of anxiety and depression who was not able to sleep at all. So many similar cases after those.

Yakeem was doing his part, being also a long time yoga teacher, he could create this very serene bubble around those he was treating, amazing to watch. Karla was playing and painting with the few children left.

There was this bubbly twelve year old girl who came all the time to ask me when was her turn, she would stay very close and stare at me, watching carefully my every move while working on the people. She wanted me to treat her. I was up to meet a great teacher in this young girl. Suddenly she was on my table, asking everything I was doing. I asked her about her experience and she gradually started to express herself. She said...”Nobody asks us kids how we feel or what we think, and we have a lot to say, adults just want to protect us and keep us safe. We need to be able to talk like the big people do. I see my new friends here how they are afraid with their chest full, but do not know how to say it, so I tell them to breathe deep and blow to the clouds. Then it feels better inside” This twelve year old wise Master hit me very hard. I let her talk all she wanted. Then Yakeem came to me and said “I need your help with this one”. Wow, he asking me for help was a big deal. On his table was this heavely overweight man in his fifties, with violet swollen legs, I had seen him before trying to walk with his walker. He had lost everything, his house and belongings. While laying on the table he started crying, he had not been able to cry since the earthquake. That is when I craked, had to stop working on his legs and went away to cry as hard as I could, Yakeem was there for me. I also needed to let it out. After a while, with an open chest, I went back and finished my work, that what I could offer him.

There were long silent moments while driving back home, we needed to process, take in, integrate all the lessons and experiences. This third time down there shaked me in a very different way as the first two and I am exceptionally grateful for it.

The power of Shiatsu reaches far beyond consciousness, it touches the very filaments of existence itself.

The way it can reboot the system and specially the ones in survival mode left me humblely speechless. Life has given me the opportunity to express and honor my art in the pure essence of what “being in service” means. No mind, just heart.

 

This is my way of life.

Yours

Nilsa Eberhart