After the 2011 tsunami, Yasuhiro Koike, a Buddhist priest in Higashi-Matsushima City in northeastern Japan, helped lay victims to rest. He also began searching for a way to support their families, and to ease their sorrow. He began carving statues of the Buddha and giving them to bereaved survivors. The statues make recipients feel as if the spirits of their loved ones are nearby. Over 7 years, Koike has carved more than 1,000 statues, giving people solace and the strength to go on.