On March 29th, 2011, 8-year old Aleks, from Halifax, Nova Scotia, visited Ottawa to kindly present a “Senbazuru” (One Thousand Origami Cranes) to H.E. Kaoru ISHIKAWA, Ambassador of Japan.  He actually folded one thousand and four hundred paper cranes with his classmates and their parents for the children who are affected by the recent earthquake and tsunami which hit northern Japan on March 11.

His message written on the wing of the paper crane reads “My wish is that the people of Japan do not lose hope and that they know that we care.”

Aleks’ father drove from Halifax to Ottawa to help his son realize this very warm donation. The exchange took place at the Parliament Hill office of Mr. Mike Savage, Member of Parliament (Dartmouth Cole Harbour). Ambassador Ishikawa expressed his deepest gratitude to Aleks and his friends for the very warm and wonderful gift. He promised to send these goodwill cranes to Japanese children who very much need such kinds of friendship and encouragement.


What is the significance of a “Senbazuru” (One Thousand Origami Cranes)?
Senbazuru is a Japanese word meaning “a group of one thousand origami paper cranes held together by strings” which is usually sent to a person who is ill or injured as a prayer for recovery.  Cranes are a symbol of longevity and happiness in Japan.  Origami is the art of Japanese paper folding and Senbazuru has also become a strong symbol of world peace. 


Ambassador Ishikawa receives the kind gift of Senbazuru from Aleks



A message is written on the wing of the origami paper crane