As 2022 draws to a close and the final Nisei Lunch is in the books, I want to share some of my thoughts about the Nisei Lunch program. The idea of the Nisei Lunch program began as a way to say, “thank you” to the Nisei generation for their hard work and sacrifice to create a better environment for future generations. That was in 2015! Sadly, so many Nisei are no longer with us, however the Nisei Lunch program continues to provide a monthly lunch by delivering lunches to those Nisei that have expressed an interest in the delivery program, and there are still a handful of Nisei that attend the lunch in-person as well.
The Nisei Lunch program is so fortunate and thankful to all the volunteers that have contributed their time to make the lunch program such a success over the years. This group of volunteers fill a variety of roles such as picking-up and delivering lunches to guests that can no longer attend the lunch in person. I want to acknowledge and thank this special group of volunteers that makes our deliveries: Carolyn Takei, Steve Suzaka, Jim Yoshida, Thom Ikeda, Lisa Kunihiro, Michi Toyohara, Eddie Shimizu, Frank Kiuchi, Karen Akada-Sakata, and Buff and Carla Koehler/Mizuta.
Our in-house group of volunteers is such an integral part of the Nisei Lunch. One will not find a more dedicated and committed group, some of which have been with the program since its inception in 2015. I want to acknowledge and say thank you to the following volunteers that have made the 2022 Nisei Lunch program such a success:
Mary Ann Yamaguchi, Shiz Kaku, Sue Beeson, Nancy Nakatsu, Ruth Shimano, Joan Hall, Lisa Kunihiro, Mel Inouye, Nadine Miyahara, Patricia Yano, Carole Remme, Candace & Kurt Nogaki, Dean Hoshizaki, Janice Kunitsugu, Kathy Yee, Paul Murakami, Lawrence Leake, Lilly Yamamura, Carla Mizuta, Terry Takeuchi, Mike Yaguchi, Diane Yaguchi, Carol Nichols, Walt Tanimoto.
Throughout the year, dessert for our lunches has been prepared by Carla Mizuta and Sue Beeson as her substitute. However, dessert for December is a little different. We ask our volunteers and others to donate cookies for dessert. I would like to thank the following people for donating cookies for the dessert:
Candace Nogaki, Nancy Nakatsu, Leslie Wittman, Etsuko Fujishima, Joan Hall, Ruth Shimano, Carol Nichols, Sara Law, Thom Ikeda, Jim Yoshida, Linda Suzaka, Mary Ann Yamaguchi, Kim Akimoto, Mel Inouye, Janice Kunitsugu, Carole Remme, Sue Beeson, Ann Kumata.
In closing, on behalf of the Nisei Lunch program, I would like to wish everyone Happy Holidays and a New Year filled with good health, prosperity, and success.
Photos courtesy of Janice Kunitsugu.