Currently we’re raising money for preparing long term war toward the Virus since the situation of tourism is now facing the disaster. We’ve already raised 80%, but we’re trying to make it to double by May 10th.
Even a small donation would help us reach my goal. I plan to use the money to keep paying the rent which is the heaviest cost of all. For now we’re not going to shut down this hostel.
You can make a donation on our crowdfunding campaign page by clicking https://camp-fire.jp/projects/view/250260.
Feel free to share my campaign on Facebook and Twitter, too! （Especially to your Japanese friends.）
Since they don’t have English site, here is the translation of that project page:
Due to the spread of the Coronavirus and the COVID-19 disease, as of early February our hostel has been drowning in cancellations, with almost no reservations for the new season left. We don’t know how long this unsparing crisis will persist, but with your help, we can survive this crisis!
About this Project
First of all, thank you for choosing to read this project page among the countless projects on this website. And to all those who have relatives or friends who were struck by the coronavirus, to those whose daily lives have been put on hold, unable to perform their usual work or to attend school, I express my deepest sympathies.
I am Hazuki Umemoto, owner of The Evergreen Hostel. On the occasion of my wedding in December 2015, I moved from Tokyo to Hiroshima and started a job in hospitality. As someone who loves traveling, I started visiting many countries, and on these various trips, I developed a fascination with the charm of hostels. I started to develop a dream of my own: to create a lively space where friendships between all kinds of people are formed, and half a year later by June 2016, my hostel in Hiroshima, a city with two world heritage sites, was opened!
Introduction to the area and our facilities
The property is located in Honkawachō 本川町, Hiroshima Prefecture.
At just 550m (a three-minute walking distance) from the Hiroshima Peace Memorial or A-Bomb Dome, the hostel is surrounded by a wonderful neighbourhood dotted with shops. This area has numerous unique cafés and hang-outs that suit any kind of style, but it can be enjoyed just as much on a stroll. To say that this “city” of Honkawachō was the reason I chose this property would not be an exaggeration!
A hostel (also, a guesthouse) is a cheap type of accommodation where lodging is provided on bunkbeds in large, shared rooms or dormitories. Hostels essentially provide lodging only, with no amenities included. Southeast Asia is full of hostels where you can stay for just $10 or so.
I’ve been out there, carrying a backpack, crossing borders and seeing many new places, but what actually, truly made my trips memorable, were the occasional encounters with people who were at the same lodging at the same time. There were even times where our encounter didn’t just stop there, like that time when two people I had met in Myanmar showed me around in Singapore half a year later. Or that time when I raised a glass in Seoul with people who shared a room with me in Budapest… Hostels are places where you just casually roll into such encounters. I always have, and still do believe that these places make individual travel so much more fun.
“Evergreen”… With a name that refers to the ever-youthful evergreen trees, this hostel strives to be a reasonably priced environment where anyone can gather and enjoy themselves, regardless of age, gender, occupation, nationality or religion. Other than making your stay enjoyable by taking care of your essential needs such as security and hygiene, we provide an active atmosphere in our lounge and kitchen, while the relaxing environment of our dormitories allow your entire self to rest and find calmness, striking a perfect balance between activity and relaxation.
It’s almost four years since the opening in July 2016. Since then, I have continuously run this hostel while striving for it to be a meeting point for people who stay the night, while just as much welcoming locals who do not, and where those two can mingle. It is rather small, with its two dormitories and a total of 24 beds, but to me personally, the size of this hostel where you can link each face to their name, feels just right. With the support of quite a lot of people from even before we opened, we have somehow managed to steadily continue to be in business, even in the face of increasing competition with (private) guest houses, other hostels, and hotels.
Lately, we have been organising several “English Nights”. Aimed mostly at adults from the area looking for more opportunities to speak English, these events go by the simple rule of “No matter what you do, spend this time speaking English ONLY!” During these events, the locals have a great time conversing and mingling with hostel staff on a working holiday visa, or sometimes even with guests, no matter how comical their English may be.
※Due to concerns related to the coronavirus, these events are currently replaced by video conference calls.
As you know, the COVID-19 disease continues to spread, and since early February, this has led to tons of cancellations and a complete stop of new reservations. Under normal circumstances, Spring Break and the sakura season start to draw in the masses from about halfway the month of March, with near-full occupancy during these times. With Golden Week taking place as well, spring is supposed to be the high season.
But this is not anyone’s fault! Cancellations and self-restraint are only natural in light of the precautions that must be taken in order to save lives. On the contrary, as international travel has been restricted, some travellers have stranded abroad. I even saw on the news that some accommodations have already had to close as cancellations continued to pour in. This breaks my heart. Slowly but surely, the number of infected in Hiroshima is rising as well. *Data as of 2020/3/31, 10:30 am
As I am writing this on 31/03/2020, we have only two reservations for the month of April. In other words, it looks like April’s sales will be about $0. Of course, this doesn’t mean that I don’t have to pay rent, staff’s allowances, supplies, communication, the electricity bill… during that time. (Even if it would come to temporarily suspending business, the largest cost burden that is rent would still have to be paid as usual.) No clue how long this crisis will last, but what I do know is that I want our hostel to survive with all my heart at least until the 2021 Olympic season, and I will be back to welcoming guests with a smile. To all who are reading this… This may be a very selfish request, but I would like to humbly ask for your help!
How we plan to use your gifts
We would like to use the money raised from your gifts to cover the fixed costs that we incur even when we are out of business (mainly rent).
Once life has gone back to normal, treat yourself to a relaxing stay.
【Invitation for 1 Night】 ¥3,500
We offer you a one night’s stay at our hostel.
【Invitation for 3 Nights】 ¥10,000
We offer you a three nights’ stay. You can also come as a group of three and stay one night.
※ All offers are valid until March 2023.
※ All offers can be transferred to friends or other.
※ Reservations should be made directly via e-mail, not through reservation websites.
email@example.com (Owner — Hazuki UMEMOTO)
In the midst of this crisis, none of us can foresee the future. Even so, borders can’t remain closed, and entire populations can’t remain in self-quarantine forever. We do seem to be headed towards a return to normality at some point in the future, and even if we don’t, we will find some way or other to pick our lives back up. Meanwhile, work continues on the development of a vaccine.
Enjoying delicious food, going to new places, finally standing in front of that famous monument in real life, the excitement when you meet a new someone… I believe that all of these are natural human desires. I would be very glad to receive your support, knowing that you can look forward to a relieving trip to Hiroshima.
To everyone in the same industry who stumbled upon this page, to everyone in the tourism industry… We stand together! And let’s work to prevent further infections as much as possible. Thank you for reading this far.
The Evergreen Hostel
※ This is an All-in Project. Even if we fail to reach our goal, the offer will remain valid and you will retain the right to claim your reward.