NY de Volunteer Institutional Relations Department July 9, 2008
NYC Kids Explore Japanese Culture Explore Japanese Culture: An After-School Program Sponsored by Derek Jeter of the New York Yankees
NY de Volunteer, a non-profit organization, held a very successful program called “Explore Japanese Culture: An After-School Program” recognized by the City of New York at six recreational centers located around Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx from September 2007 to June 2008.
The objective of this program is to offer children in the local communities of New York an experience of other cultures and expand their expand their horizons in an effort to foster a new generation of global citizens. The program met weekly for two-hour sessions in the evening, gathering almost 50 children between the ages of six and thirteen and immersing them in a multifaceted experience of Japanese lifestyle and culture, including Japanese language, games, food, martial arts, tea ceremony, and dance. Furthermore, we invited Americans with experience living in Japan as guest speakers and potential role models for the children.
Today, in a world where diversity education is required more than ever, this type of hands-on cultural program is a first – even for New York City. The children learned about Japan - a faraway country which they knew little or nothing about - learned to look at the world with different eyes, and developed a curiosity for unfamiliar traditions. On the final day of this program, many children expressed a wish to study Japanese and visit Japan soon, showing interest in continuing their global experiences introduced by this program.
We received sponsorship from the Turn 2 Foundation, a private non-profit corporation of Derek Jeter of the MLB New York Yankees, for four of the six venues of this program. Our program was covered on their website.
Our program provided an experience in foreign culture to almost 300 children in the local communities at the six different venues, expanded their future dreams and options, and provided an opportunity to elevate their interest in foreign cultures.
This program was made possible by our volunteers and specialists on Japanese culture, and by the efforts of our staff. And just in this past year, we enjoyed the company of 500 volunteers in our programs. When we count our administrative volunteers, NY de Volunteer has over 700 supporters.
Born and raised in Japan, our volunteers are uniquely qualified to provide the best cross-cultural education in our global age. After two months of fun-filled activities, the children have built an affinity for Japan and its people and will surely remember their teachers for a long time to come. Ultimately, these grassroots activities will also help to promote bilateral relations between our countries.
The recognition we received from the City of New York is substantial, and this program continue in September. We expect to ask for the support of 10-15 volunteers and specialists in Japanese culture for each program and will continue to be grateful for your ongoing support and cooperation.
Noriko Hino, FOUNDER NY de Volunteer Contact: +1 (212) 932 7208