Initiated by Women,
Orchestrated by Women,
to Empower the tsunami area
Charity match by women's football players in Europe to commemorate the disaster in 2011,
June 19, 2022 in Onagawa, Japan
At 3:46 PM on March 11, 2011, a magnitude 9.0 great earthquake and tsunami hit north-eastern Japan, including my house in Sendai, Miyagi. Although our house was heavily damaged and had to move in the end, my family was ok because we live in the inland area. In the coastal area, more than 15,000 people died and 2526 are still missing as of 2021.
I eventually devoted a significant part of my time to the victims as Sendai director of the Taylor Anderson Memorial Fund, and then as managing director of Ja´pon-Hasekura Supporting Association. In 2019 we organized the Hasekura Cup in the Seville area, Spain with Real Betis U15 with La Liga support to commemorate its 400-year-old historical bond between Spain and Japan.
Women's football is another field I have been heavily involved. Miss Caitlin Foord, Arsenal, played in Sendai in the 2016/17 season and I helped her as her interpreter. Women's football players in Japan are ranked much higher than men's but their salaries and environments are far worse unreasonably and unfairly.
Minori Chiba is an ex-national player and enjoying her 6th season in Spain. I was impressed by her when she hold a charity match in the tsunami area in the middle of COVID-19 with a very limited budget. We decided to have something fun together for the second one.
In Japan, the women's professional football league finally started in 2021. WE League, or Women's Empowerment League, has a mission to empower women by using football as its platform. Its season starts in September and ends in May so as to welcome more players from Europe and encourage more Japanese players to go to Europe. However, due to limited financial/manpower resources, it seems really unlikely, unfortunately.
So, Minori and I decided to have a joined tryout charity match in mid. June for the next season. For the 2022 match, we invite only Japanese players in Europe due to the Covid-19 regulations but would like to invite non-Japanese in the future. They can travel to Japan to enjoy their off-season, or WE league could recruit them through our match. To empower women, and to empower the tsunami area, two women work together with more women.
The below is the outline of our match. We appreciate it if you could consider sponsorship for us.
Executive Committee of Football Charity Match by International Players
The 2nd Football Charity Match by International Players in Onagawa
Produce an event to have tourists stay and spend money in the tsunami area, Onagawa
Joined tryout match to help women’s Japanese/non-Japanese players in Europe to find a team to play in Japan next season
Encourage Japanese players to go to Europe by providing a chance for them to return to Japan
Giving college students to learn what to play in Europe from those international players
Nominal Support (Provisional)
British Embassy, BCCJ, Spain Embassy, Italian Embassy, WE League, Onagawa cho,
Ms. Minori Chiba and 14 Japanese players who play in Spain, Italy, Germany, the U.K., etc.
Opponent: Waseda University
Date: June 19, 2022.
Venue: New stadium in Onagawa
Admission fee 1000 yen.
Ticket will be provided with a 500-yen coupon which is valid only in Onagawa
A charity team founded by Ms. Minori Chiba. A charity match was held in Ishinomaki on July 30, 2021. The opponent was Mynavi Sendai Ladies Youth.
About Minori Chiba
Soccer player at C.D. Femarguín SPAR Gran Canaria, Spain. U17 national player. She played at Urawa Reds Ladies, CD Transportes Alcaine [ESP], Zaragoza Club de Fútbol Femenino [ESP], Málaga Club de Fútbol Femenino [ESP], and Córdoba CF Femenino [ESP].