Global Voyage for a Nuclear Free World - Peace Boat Hibakusha Project
Since 2008, Japan-based international NGO Peace Boat has invited Hibakusha (atomic bomb survivors) of Hiroshima and Nagasaki to participate in the "Global Voyage for a Nuclear-Free World: Peace Boat Hibakusha Project." As of 2016, over 170 Hibakusha have travelled around the world giving personal testimonies about the effects of the atomic bombs and calling for nuclear abolition. The messages from Hiroshima and Nagasaki have the potential to deeply move people around the world who are affected by war, violence, poverty and environmental issues. This project is held annually onboard Peace Boat's global voyages. As the average age of the Hibakusha is now close to 80 years old, the time remaining for them to directly send out their urgent message is very limited.

"Global Voyage for Nuclear Free World": Disarmament Education
Peace Boat's Hibakusha Project means Hibakusha can share their testimony around the world, including with schools, governments and the media. Students, educators, mayors, diplomats, policy makers, civil society representatives and Nobel Peace Laureates have joined this project, in ports and onboard the ship. Two documentary films on the project, by young filmmakers from Costa Rica and Japan, are screened internationally and, as tools of value for disarmament education, are available for purchase on Amazon here: English and Spanish.

Global Voyage for a Nuclear Free World" working with other victims and survivors
Hibakusha from South Korea, Canada, the United States and Brazil have also joined the project.
Peace Boat's programs link the issue of Hiroshima and Nagasaki to Japan's wartime behavior, bringing issues about historical recognition and the Asia-Pacific into disarmament education.
The Hibakusha meet with other victims and survivors of war, including Holocaust survivors in Auschwitz and people affected by Agent Orange/Dioxin in Viet Nam, to share their experiences and explore how to pass their knowledge on to future generations and prevent the recurrence of such tragedies.


Current Activities

The 2018 Peace Boat Hibakusha Project is taking place 8 May - 21 August 2018, onboard the 98th Global Voyage. The theme of this voyage will be "From Banning to Abolishing Nuclear Weapons with the Power of Civil Society".

2017 saw a historical step forward towards a world free of nuclear weapons. The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons was passed at the UN in July, and in December ICAN was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of its efforts that contributed to the advent of this treaty. Nuclear weapons have now been declared illegal thanks to the efforts of civil society. However, the nuclear weapons states are not willing to face up to this reality. There are also many nations who, while they do not have nuclear weapons of their own, rely heavily upon them. This makes it even more important to ensure the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons comes into legal force, and the full abolition of these weapons. It is vital that we spread the word about the devastating impacts of these weapons on humans and society. This is the global responsibility of Japan as a nation that has experienced the use of nuclear weapons. We must never repeat the mistakes of the past.

An overview of the 2018 Hibakusha Project can be dowloaded here.

Profiles of the participating Hibakusha can be dowloaded here.

Details about the activities in ports and onboard are available on the 98th Global Voyage page and on Peace Boat's Facebook page.


Recent Activities - the 2017 Hibakusha Project

In April 2017, the Hibakusha Project departed from the port of Yokohama, Japan to travel around the world (12 April - 25 July 2017) on Peace Boat's 94th Global Voyage.

The theme of this voyage was "For we shall not repeat the evil: Civil society banning nuclear weapons".

An overview of the 2017 Hibakusha Project can be dowloaded here.

Profiles of the participating, Hibakusha and Youth can be dowloaded here.

Details about the activities in ports and onboard are available on the 94th Global Voyage page.


Past Activities

The 2016 Global Voyage for a Nuclear Free World took place 18 August - 30 November 2016, onboard Peace Boat's 92nd Global Voyage. The theme of this voyage was "Sharing the Testimonies and Message of the Survivors, Building the Momentum to Ban Nuclear Weapons."

An overview of the 2016 Hibakusha Project can be downloaded here and the profiles of participating Hibakusha and youth here.
Reports on activities onboard and in ports are available on the 92nd Global Voyage Reports.

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The 2015 edition of the Peace Boat Hibakusha Project returned to Japan in July 2015, after taking place onboard the 87th Global Voyage in April - July 2015. Marking the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, this voyage included a special project being held in collaboration with Mayors for Peace: "I was her age." Read more about the project on the Mayors for Peace 2020 Campaign website here.

Further information and photos from the voyage can be seen on the I Was Her Age Project Facebook here, and further reports are available on the 87th Global Voyage page here.

The full voyage report is also now available online here in English or in Japanese (PDF).
The full report on activities which took place in ports in collaboration with Mayors for Peace and local civil society organisations is now available here in English (PDF).

Other documents:
General overview of the project
Profiles of participating Hibakusha and accompanying youth


A 30 minute documentary was also produced by British filmmaker Emma Baggott, following the Hibakusha on their journey around the world. It can be viewed in full or downloaded here:

I Was Her Age Documentary from Peace Boat on Vimeo.


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The 2014 Hibakusha Project was held onboard the 83rd Global Voyage from March-June 2014. Read more about the project onboard the 83rd voyage here, including the overview, and the profiles of the Hibakusha and accompanying youth here.


Volunteer Web Reporter for the project onboard the 80th Global Voyage, Ari Beser also maintained a blog about the Hibakusha Project's activities on the web site of the Breaking the Nuclear Chain campaign, coordinated by the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC) together with Peace Boat and IKV-Pax Christi. Read his reports and learn more about the campaign here.



*** Download the Peace Boat Hibakusha project brochure here in English and Spanish.