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Broken to Beautiful Workshop: Hiroshima, Resilience and You

Workshop Description:

The massive disruptions caused by the COVID – 19 pandemic has highlighted the vital importance of resilience. During this difficult time, the ability to overcome adversity, adapt, and move forward has proved to be essential in both the workplace and our personal lives. The Broken to Beautiful Workshop (BBW) seeks to enhance this key characteristic through an unusual source of inspiration – the rebuilding of Hiroshima after August 6th, 1945.

Original manga art for the Broken to Beautiful Workshop

The BBW tells the extraordinary story of how the people of Hiroshima overcame the unfathomable adversity of the atomic bombing and rebuilt their city stronger and more beautiful than it was before. Within this hopeful and inspiring context, the BBW provides practical tools to enable participants to think deeply about their own sources of resilience and discover new frameworks to draw upon during challenging times.   

Word Cloud created by employees at Allstate Insurance

Target Outcomes:

The Broken to Beautiful Workshop seeks to foster the following in participants

  • Resilience: Identify sources of resilience within themselves
  • Learning: Learn about long – held Japanese philosophies such as cho-wa (balance) and iki-gai (reason for being) that guided the people of Hiroshima to overcome adversity
  • Grit: Discover the extraordinary mentalities that enabled Hiroshima to not only survive but excel in building a brighter future.
  • Inspiration: Leave energized with a sense of hope and optimism


The BBW utilizes constant shifts of perspective through live presenters/facilitators, historical film footage, CG renderings, AI colorized photos, and virtual simulations to provide an immersive multimedia experience. Throughout the workshop, participants actively engage in interactive polls, introspective activities, word clouds, and facilitated breakout sessions to develop their own capacity for resilience.

The BBW is a joint venture between the UME Oleander Initiative in Cambridge, MA, USA and Peace Culture Village in Hiroshima, Japan. Please contact Ray Matsumiya at or Mary Popeo at for additional information.

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