LEUCADIA — Students at Paul Ecke Central School in Leucadia made many folds in origami paper in a small, but poignant, gesture of support for the people of Japan, in the wake of the recent massive earthquake and tsunami.
During recess and at home, students folded 1,000 origami cranes to help sustain the people of Japan in their time of suffering and uncertainty. An ancient Japanese legend promises that anyone who folds 1,000 origami cranes will be granted a wish by a crane, such as recovery from injury.
Shortly after World War II, the folded crane came to symbolize a hope for peace through the story of Sadako Sasaki. Today this tradition represents a form of healing and hope during challenging times. After 9/11, the Japanese American National Museum’s staff and volunteers, along with many students and visitors, folded thousands of cranes, and in a gesture of support sent them to fire and police stations and other institutions in New York City.
The cranes are displayed in a tree on campus along with other origami crafts and cherry blossoms that the children have made. Everyone can enjoy the artistic beauty and compassionate sentiment of 1,000 cranes.
Ultimately, the students will send the cranes to an elementary school in Japan.
“These kids are making a beautiful and meaningful gesture,” said Kathy
Gordon, project-organizing parent. “It is very heartwarming.”