2016 TOMODACHI – Aloha Leadership Program delegates visit Tohoku, Japan

TALP delegates meet students at Onagawa Junior High School

TALP delegates meet students at Onagawa Junior High School

Six delegates between the ages 12-20, along with chaperone Daniel Hwang and videographer Colby Takeda, returned to Honolulu on June 28, 2016 after spending one week in the Tohoku region of Japan as part of the 2016 TOMODACHI – Aloha Leadership Program (TALP).  JASH has been sending delegates to Tohoku since 2013, and as the fourth TALP delegation, these students were appreciative of the opportunity to reunite with friends they had made through Rainbow For Japan Kids (RFJK). Read More

TOMODACHI- Aloha Leadership Prepares for upcoming Tohoku Trip

On Saturday, May 14, 2016, delegates of the 2016 TOMODACHI-Aloha Leadership Program met at the JASH office to plan and prepare for their upcoming trip to Tohoku, Japan next month. The TOMODACHI Aloha Leadership Program (TALP) envisions creating generations of Japanese and Americans dedicated to perpetuating the important Japan-America relationship, bettering their communities, and empowering themselves to become global-minded leaders in their schools and organizations. Read More

TOMODACHI – Aloha Leadership Program Delegates Visit Tohoku, Japan

TALP Delegates reunite with RFJK students in Onagawa

The Japan-America Society of Hawaii (JASH) sent six students ranging in age from 12 – 22, along with chaperon Daniel Hwang, tothe Tohokuregion of Japan as part of the 2015 TOMODACHI – Aloha Leadership Program (TALP) from July 7 – 15, 2015. The purpose of the trip was to reconnect with participants of the Rainbow For Japan Kids Program (RFJK). The funding for this program came from a generous grant given by the TOMODACHI Initiative and another private donor. This was the third year in a row that Hawaii students have been able to travel to Tohoku to visit and reconnect with the friends made here in Hawaii who have participated in the RFJK program, which allows Japanese students affected by the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami to travel to Hawaii for mental and physical recuperation in addition to learning about Hawaii’s culture. Read More

TOMODACHI – Aloha Leadership Program Delegates Travel to Tohoku

TALP Delegates at Honolulu International Airport: (back row, l – r: JASH Educational Assistant David Nakanishi, JASH Educational Director Liz Barrera, Sarah Tamashiro, chaperone Daniel Hwang, Malakai Shiraki, Logan Takeda, JASH President Lenny Yajima; front row, l – r: Seri Nakamura, Moana Ueda and Shayna Kim)

After one month of training workshops and other events, JASH sent six delegates (ages 12 – 22) and one volunteer chaperone, Daniel Hwang, to the Tohoku region as part of the TOMODACHI – Aloha Leadership Program (TALP) on July 7, 2015. The purpose of this trip is for the Hawaii delegates to reconnect with Japanese students who had participated (or will participate) in the Rainbow for Japan Kids (RFJK) program in Hawaii.Read More

TOMODACHI – Aloha Leadership Program Reunion Party

TOMODACHI Alumni and BCH members enjoy time to network and share their experiences

On June 20, 2015, JASH partnered with the Bridge Club Hawaii (BCH) to create the first annual TOMODACHI – Aloha Leadership Program Reunion Party. About fourteen delegates from the 2013, 2014, and 2015 trips to Tohoku attended the potluck lunch at the JASH office. This inaugural party featured two guests: Giovanni Douresseau, a TOMODACHI Inouye Scholar from Los Angeles, California; and Atsushi Takebayashi, the founder of Move4Japan, from Honolulu. BCH members shared popular dishes with Mr. Douresseau to allow him to experience some of the local culture. Mr. Takebayashi generously shared some of his famous yakisoba, which he cooks for the people affected by the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami in the Tohoku region through his non-profit organization, Move4Japan. Read More

Tomodachi-Initiative Hawaii Delegates Bring Hope and Hula to Rainbow for Japan Kids Alumni

Hawaii delegates dance hula at Otsuchi Collaborative School as part of a variety of cultural exchange activities

Hawaii delegates dance hula at Otsuchi Collaborative School as part of a variety of cultural exchange activities

In July 2014, ten students from ages 13 to 19, along with chaperones Daniel Hwang and Wendy Lum, ventured to the northern region of Japan’s main island to reconnect with Japanese students who had participated in the Rainbow for Japan Kids (RFJK) program in Honolulu, Hawaii. This program offers Japanese children – often left homeless and even parent-less by the Great Tohoku Earthquake of March 11, 2011 – a chance to relax and recuperate, in the hopes that they will bring fonder memories back to their homes. These memories are forged by one of the program’s primary goals, which is to create lasting friendships with Hawaii children through a 2-day camp and outdoor activities that immerse Japanese kids in Hawaii’s natural beauty. Read More

Hawaii’s Kids visit Tohoku to Reconnect with Japanese Kids

Hawaii’s kids help clean Shichigahama Beach park in Miyagi Prefecture as part of their volunteer activity during the Japan trip

Eight youth from Hawaii ages 13-18 visited northern Japan recently to reconnect with Japanese kids who visited Hawaii under the Japan-America Society of Hawaii (JASH) sponsored Rainbow for Japan Kids (RFJK) project. JASH has been bringing Japanese children directly affected by the 3/11 disaster to Hawaii for rest, recuperation, and physical/psychological relief. Read More

Rainbow for Japan Kids Project Receives Award from Japanese Consulate

Consul General Yoshihiko Kamo presenting the certificate of commendation to JASH President Ed Hawkins

Consul General Yoshihiko Kamo presenting the certificate of commendation to JASH President Ed Hawkins

As part of the festivities at this year’s Emperor’s birthday celebration on December 14, 2011, JASH was presented with a special certificate of commendation from the Consulate General of Japan at Honolulu. The Consul General decided to recognize organizations in Hawaii that assisted with immediate disaster relief efforts following the tragic earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear accident on March 11th in Japan’s northeast region. The Rainbow for Japan Kids project, which JASH is a partner with JAL Hawaii, First Hawaiian Bank, and Studio Rim Hawaii, brings children from the affected regions of Japan to Hawaii for rest, recuperation, and physical/psychological relief. The other individuals and organizations honored were Aloha for Japan statewide fundraising campaign (represented by Hawaii Lt. Gov. Brian Schatz), Aloha Initiative (represented by Mr. Keith Regan), and Mrs. Andy Walsh (wife of Pacific Fleet Commander Admiral Patrick Walsh). Read More

Go For Da Record!

the crowd gathers for the record; Hawaiian Airlines was a major sponsor

1000+ ukulele players gathered at the Waikiki Shell on Saturday, October 22 in an attempt to break the World Record for largest ukulele ensemble. While they fell about 500 people short of the record, they still set a new record for Hawaii. Jake Shimabukuro wrote the special song for the record attempt and kept the mood positive. A majority of the attendees were just happy to play along with Jake. Organizer Leo Daquioag of the Music for Life Foundation stated that the event was not only to break the record, but also to raise funds for his charity that supports children in Hawaii and to support the Rainbow for Japan Kids project led by JASH and its partners, so it was a success nonetheless. Read More