Yuki Kuwabara—Social Entrepreneur and Community Builder
Our lives continue to overflow with things, yet things do not overflow with affection. The Kumiki Project from Rikuzentakata in Iwate Prefecture is a movement that Yuki Kuwabara launched to address this modern existential struggle. Kumiki is a DIY wood kit developed to allow individuals to build on their own, ranging from small shelves all the way up to entire houses. Kit buyers learn the joy of making things and experience the excitement of building something together with others. The idea arose after the Great Tohoku Earthquake destroyed a local lumber company, and the leftover wood was used to build a meeting place for local residents. The Kumiki Project connects people to people and people to nature, helping to ease the loneliness and anxiety many in society face. Yuki and others in the project are working to make a better world for all to live in.