Hi Carina, and thanks Ross for a very important and timely perspective. I will study this column and the replies but first I'd like to suggest something as a possible resource for those who want to be able to set up their dojo so they can make the modest living that Ross mentions. I don't have the link handy, but if a person contacts the editor of USAikido Federation news, online, Laura Pavlik, or Yamada Sensei's dojo New York Aikikai someone would be happy to refer him or her to the Aikido Instructors' Organization, which offers programs to help set up a dojo so that it can be financially viable. When I find the web addresses or phone numbers I'll add them here, if I don't get criticized for advertising on AikiWeb......(just kidding)
This is just to let you know that Yamada Sensei shares these concerns and has endorsed the program. As for myself I taught at a local YMCA for around eight years in the late seventies and early eighties and so am reading about this topic with interest.
Posting in haste so interested people can start to check out the referral I made.....
P.S. I'm really sorry, Carina, about there being such a problem on such a beautiful island. I hope things get better very soon.