The bright red “Canna” flower which bloomed in September 1945 is the symbol of forgiveness, peace, encouragement, revival, and hope.
“Canna Project” is using Canna as a baton to relay and develop the senses of tolerance, acceptance and compassion among the youth and children of the world.
Canna must have taught us “恕 jyo” that is “not to treat others the way we do not want to be treated by others” and forgiveness surpasses revenge and vengeance.
From Children of Canna-project
What is Canna Project
In mid-September 1945, one month after the atomic bombings in Hiroshima of Japan, Canna in bright red color blossomed at just 820 meters away from the centre of explosion. It has been said that nothing could be sprouted on the bombed land for seventy five years, but Canna germinated and even blossomed. It is believed that Canna had given hope and courage to many people, healed their hearts and supported them to continue to live on.
A newspaper reporter took a black and white photo of this Canna in 1945 and the photo is now being exhibited near the exit of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum. Riho Tachibana, a University Lecturer resident in Tokyo, paid a visit to the Museum at Hiroshima in 2004 and she also got hope and courage from Canna after seeing many miserable stories in the Museum. To express her thanks to Canna for the received hope and courage, she carried out many researches and produced the JYORURI (a form of traditional Japanese narrative music) in telling the story of Canna.
A public performance was also held in Hiroshima in August 2005. However, from the result of the survey immediately done after the performance, it was discovered that none of the audiences have heard about Canna or even did not notice the photo of Canna being exhibited at the Museum. Riho Tachibana therefore started her tour of JYORURIperformance in Tokyo, Kobe, Kyoto, Fukushima, Shikoku, Hakata, Saitama, etc. in 2005 hoping to let more people to know Canna, which had given hope and courage to many people suffered from atomic bombings in Hiroshima. Unfortunately, Canna has been forgotten for almost 60 years.
In 2007, Riho Tachibana also started her lectures in primary schools. A horticulturist at Suzaka in Nagano prefecture was impressed by her activities and donated the bulbs of Canna for her explanation and planting during the lectures with the primary school students. Riho Tachibana set up the “Canna Project” for the purpose of spreading the message of peace and the appreciation to Canna for the hope and courage. Using Canna as the baton, she started the Canna relay in Japan and overseas from 2008 onward. Up to now, 31 prefectures (out of a total of 47) with more than 175 schools/other facilities joined the Canna relay. Canna relay is also being conducted in 16 countries (Japan, Mont-Saint-Michel of France, Vatican of Italy, Spain, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Bali, Australia, India, state of Arizona in the U.S.A., Canada, Tanzania of Africa, Yangon of Myanmar, Belgium, Nepal and Germany).
Riho Tachibana visited the northeast of Japan after the 3.11 Earthquake in 2011 of the Pacific coast of Tohoku. Canna blossoms in summer but not in winter. To encourage the people living in the disaster areas and to give our warm caring to them especially during the freezing winter, Riho Tachibana started to collect human Canna smiles. 1,000 Canna smiles were being collected just within 3 weeks. She then printed the posters and delivered to the disaster areas in end of 2011.
She made a speech at the Ishinomaki in Miyagi prefecture in March 2012 and also visited northeast again in December 2012, April and July 2013, March 2014. Kumamoto also suffered from serious earthquake and Riho Tachibana visited Kumamoto with 9,309 Canna smiles and carried out the Canna Relay at schools in June 2016.
As at October 2016, 10,000 Canna smiles have been collected from over 106 countries around the world. Riho Tachibana is building a peaceful world through the “Canna Project” and coincidently the language of flower of Canna has exactly the same meaning of building a solid, stable and peaceful world.
What is Canna Smile ↓
10,000 Canna Smiles (smiling faces from 10,000 people)
were put inside the heart shape
Canna in mid-September 1945
(photo exhibited at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum up to April 2017 )
Canna photo has been moved and exhibiting at the Mesena Hall
at Suzaka city of Nagano prefecture from 26 June 2017
Canna Project Official Homepage: