BIO: Setsuko

Setsuko moved to the United States from Japan 42 years ago, when her daughter Noriko was 12. Setsuko suffers from severe dementia, and Noriko quite her job and moved from Oakland to be her full-time caretaker. Setsuko is unable to cook, bathe herself, or take care of other daily tasks, and the dementia occasionally prevents Setsuko from recognizing her daughter. Setsuko will need to begin using a wheelchair in the coming years, but for now she is still walking.

Setsuko‚Äôs husband was a talented carpenter, but the home–and the beautiful handmade shades in the front windows–is all that remains after his death many years ago. Together, the family of two has very little income, and what there is is spent almost immediately on food and other necessities. They were referred to Rebuilding Together East Bay-North by J-Sei, the Japanese Senior Citizen Center in Berkeley.

Together with our volunteers, RTEBN took on a number of projects for Setsuko, including replacing a broken window, installing smoke detectors, CO detectors, and an overflow for the hot water heater, removing debris, and repairing a rotted out handrailing. Thank you for helping improve Setsuko’s safety and quality of life!