Kokoro
Wednesday, November 13, 2019
An active, caring community for seniors

The Story of Kokoro Assisted Living:

 Our History, Vision & Mission

 

Over twenty years ago, members of the Japanese American community in San Francisco wanted to augment the culturally sensitive services available to older Japanese Americans. In 1990, the Japanese American Skilled Nursing Home Project Committee was formed with the purpose to augment the culturally sensitive services available to older adults. The committee found that Nisei (second generation Japanese Americans) preferred to remain in their homes for as long as possible and that there was a strong need for in-home services. In 1995, the committee joined with the Japanese American Religious Federation (JARF) to form the JARF Senior Housing Task Force. After extensive research, the task force changed its focus to assisted living. In 1996, JARF Senior Housing Task Force bid for the ability to develop a piece of land on the corner of Bush and Laguna Street in San Francisco's Japantown. Land was purchased and a separate corporate entity was created, the Japanese American Religious Federation Assisted Living, Inc. (JALFI), for the purpose of planning, construction, and management of the project which was named, "Kokoro"; a Japanese term that communicates the combined notions of heart, mind, and inner spirit. With dedication, determination, and heart, the Kokoro Assisted Living community was born.

Today, Kokoro Assisted Living Inc. (KALI) a nonprofit organization provides governance through a Board of Directors and Kokoro is managed by Sequoia Living who is responsible for all operations. Kokoro Its mission is to provide a caring environment providing residential assisted living to our seniors enabling them to live independently within a Japanese cultural setting.

Located in Japantown, Kokoro is rich with sentimental and historical value with its main building a restoration of the former Sokoji Buddhist Temple. The temple served as a spiritual center and a social, meeting hall in the Japanese community. During World War II, members continued their financial support to make payments on the temple while detained in internment camps. The temple reopened to the community in 1948 and remained active at this site until moving to its new Temple a block away in 1984.

The temple has been restored for the Kokoro community and remains a special place for social gatherings and continues to foster an active spirit and communal energy. We look forward to community members joining our Kokoro residents and their families as we participate together in the vibrant heart of the Japantown community.

Our vision is to be the desired residential community of choice where seniors in our community can enjoy assisted residential living in a way that provides warmth, security, and the caring comfort infused with a sense of Japanese culture and family.

We welcome you to visit Kokoro a senior living experience in the heart of Japantown.

 


Meet the Kokoro Staff

It is an honor and a privilege to be greeting you as the Executive Director of Kokoro.  The heart of the Japanese community is engrained in the Kokoro philosophy, and it gives me great pleasure to be part of Kokoro.   We welcome your inquiries and look forward to the opportunity to be of assistance.  Please visit Kokoro.  My staff and I are anxious to welcome you as one of our new residents.... 'okaerinasai.'

Naoko Jones, Executive Director     

Tel: (415) 776-8066 ext. 12  Email:njones@koroassistedliving.org

Sakae Hamilton R.N., Director, Resident Care

Tel: (415) 776-8066 ext. 14 Email: shamilton@kokoroassistedliving.org

Jimmy Murota, Director, Sales and Marketing

Tel: (415) 776-8066 ext. 11  Email: jmurota@kokoroassistedliving.org

Rebecca Herrera, Director, Resident Services

Tel: (415) 776-8066 ext. 16  Email: rherrera@kokoroassistedliving.org

Yukie Kato, Director, Activity Services 

Tel: (415) 776-8066 ext. 15  Email:  ykato@kokoroassistedliving.org

Vera Yamamoto, Director, Dining & Housekeeping Services

Tel: (415) 776-8066 ext. 13  Email: vyamamoto@kokoroassistedliving.org

 

Board of Directors

John Kikuchi, President
Sharon Yow, Vice President
 
Robert Ohana
John Muranishi
Steven Suda
Paul Takayama
Brian Morrow
Bryan Yagi