Showing posts from September, 2007

Steps to getting involved

Summary of the Japan Times article:
Simple steps to getting involved in the work of nonprofit NGOs here in Japan -

There are many opportunities and you do not have to start your own group. Despite the growth in interest by people young and old in volunteering people surveyed all noted that they need volunteers with the previously listed skill-sets.

Assess your interests, skills and experience. Ask yourself what you can offer an organization. Clarify your availability and commitment possibilities. Be honest about your ability to work in Japanese and in a Japanese environment. If you have no Japanese communication skills there are still groups out there - they are just fewer.

Get information: Foreign Executive Women’s Volunteering Directory ( and JANIC (Japan NGO Center for International Cooperation have information in English introducing organizations.

Take action: Go to even…

Trying to do a workshop (in English)

One of the most frustrating things about doing workshops in English is the fact some people will come thinking it is for English "brush up".

Three examples that make me what to holler:

1. Tonight I was asked how long I was an English teacher and I said that the class was not a language class but she did not get the point.
2. I did an all day workshop and the first person in talked about brushing up her English. Activist skills workshops will not help your English.

3. I kept getting emails from a woman who wanted me to check her grammar although after repeated attempt I had to tell her that this was not an English course but a course about the MDGs. It was in English because it was a training course for people who want to work in international orgs.

I just need to get used to this I guess.

Fall events for everyone!

September 30: the People for Social Change (PSC) will run its 10th forum including a panel discussion featuring speakers from NGOs working in the field of disaster prevention and relief and workshops –on education and volunteer management - all in English (

October 6 and 7: annual Global Festa, in Hibiya Park a 2-day event showcasing nongovernmental, international and governmental organizations working in international cooperation and development

October 27 & 28: the International FESTA Yokohama, another weekend with booths from many types of organizations. (

There are many events listings online in Japanese such as Yahoo Volunteer and NGO-Net - for English, try The Tokyo Community News:

Information about both of the Japan Times articles in Japanese

Tomoko from QQ*Respect Campaign recently wrote me about the JT articles.
She linked both on her C is for Curiousity Blog & wrote a short intro to the articles in Japanese.
Have a look:

An interesting point in reading this is that she assumes the article is for non-Japanese people only - even where there are general statements like - people not knowing where to start when they want to do some volunteer work.

Actually the Japan Times has a readership that inlcudes many - if not a majority - of Japanese readers. (It is much easier to read than the IHT/Asahi, for example, in terms of both language and issue information.)

So much work left to do here!

JICA's sports program for PWDs

On Tuesday Sept 25 I will do a workshop on action plan development for JICA's sports program for PWDs (people with disabilities) .

I will overvew program development including :
Background: local issues, needs statement, preconditions and possible obstacles Overall Goal developmentSetting Concrete ObjectivesIntroducing the BeneficiariesDescribing the impact on beneficiariesCreating an Action plan outline: step by step description, timelineDrawing up a budget needed, how to raise fundsHighlighting the Impact the Japan training on their Action Plan

Sept 18 Japan Times article

The Japan Times printed my second article on Tuesday Sept 18, 2007.

I had wanted to have something more activist oriented printed buti guess the final version is better for the general public. Will be working on how to get the word out on these .... have a look:

Looking on the bright side:
There's good news going unreported in the Japanese nonprofit sector


Summer surveys and articles - Japan Times Sept. 11

I get tired of people complaining and talking about how tough things are - so I wanted to focus on what things can be done. In the month of August - because i had some free time - i thought i would survey about 50 people i know who work in a wide array of nonprofit NGOs. They all gave me so much valuable information and ideas I could not use all thier ideas and comments - but I tried. I will be using other the data for one more article later on in the year.

Before I left for my summer holiday to Italia, I submitted 4 articles to three publications - 3 are being published this month.

The first one came out today - Sept 11 - in the Japan Times

The JT will print another article this month - on Sept 18.

Being A Broad Magazine is also printing one article in the September edition. See my other posting.

Once "Elephant Man" is done I will started doing a survey on Corporate - nonprofit NGO collaboration.

Being A Broad Article

One of my articles is featured in Sept 2007's Being A Broad magazine

Above is the draft - will pdf the final once I get the mag
If you see it around - be sure to pick it up!

Ueno NGO Matsuri

At this years Ueno NGO Matsuri , the PSC showed "Invisible Children"

I did not even know that our previous showing was covered by the Kyoto Journal, "PSC's screening of Invisible Children in Tokyo shows the spontaneous power of grassroots social change at the transnational level.",000things/123.html

About the Matsuri
This was the 4th annual Matsuri and 2nd time the PSC joined.
200+ people came to whole day open house sponsored by the nonprofit NGOs housed in the Maruko Bldg aka the "NGO biru."

For photos and event details check out:

About the showing:
We showed the DVD twice - at 11am and 2pm the one hour viewing was followed by 30 min. of discussion. Only 25 people attended but 7 NGO reps also joined and asked me how to get a copy.

Viewers were deeply moved and many people seemed interested in spreading the word about the situation these children face.

We had projector cable p…

Downloadable - e-books on trafficking in persons

Some of of you might be interested in finding out more about the background and complexities of trafficking in persons. I read this book which can be accessed by anyone online:

Poverty, gender and human trafficking in Sub-Saharan Africa

Trafficking in Africa: A Focus on Women and Children’ by. Thanh-Dam Truong and Maria Belen Angeles,. UNESCO (March 2005). ...... aspects of migration and human trafficking in SSA.