"Japanese Mothers for Foreign Students" Movement of the Tokyo YWCA (Japan)

The Japan Foundation Awards
The Japan Foundation Special Prizes

Image picture of "japanese mothers for foreign students" movement of the tokyo ywca "Japanese Mothers for Foreign Students" Movement of the Tokyo YWCA (Japan)

 From the days when the receiving environment for exchange students was not yet established up until the present time, this volunteer group has continued to set up teams of one exchange student and one Japanese mother to work for heart-to-heart exchange, and the mothers have accepted the problems faced by the students and made unstinting efforts toward improving their situations.
This persistent and detailed movement has been promoted under the belief that communication between individuals that goes beyond national boundaries will inevitably lead to world peace. During its more than forty-year history, they have striven in the context of the family to find solutions for the various problems faced by exchange students who have left their home countries to study in Japan, and to carve out a mutual trust relationship, as a result of which their achievements have been great in the realm of deeper international understanding. The number of exchange student-"mother" teams up to the present has included 3,555 students from 54 countries.

Brief History
1961 Initiation of the "Mothers of Exchange Students" movement by the Tokyo YWCA
1968 Obtained Membership in the research group for problems of exchange students (JAFSA)
1970 Teamed up with national scholarship students of the Japanese-language school of the Tokyo University of Foreign Languages
1973 Initiated the active receiving of exchange students in Japan at their own expense and of a committee for welfare and funding
1979 Opened a student conversation room
1982 Initiated a scholarship system, and opened a supplementary classroom for Japanese-language conversation practice
1984 Initiated a guarantor system for resident time in Japan in accordance with the YWCA system, and held the 1st Japanese-language speech contest for exchange students
1989 Initiated a consultation network for exchange students by three private-sector groups
1990 Opening of a counseling bureau for exchange students
1992 Initiation of a "group for considering the social security problem for foreigners"
1995 Carrying out of "scholarships for aid to the studies of exchange students who were victims of the Great Hanshin and Awaji Earthquake
1995 Ended the residence period guarantor system, along with the abandonment of the letter of guarantee system relating to procedures for applying for period of stay in Japan by exchange students
2001 Carrying out of a program for participation in the International Year of Volunteers
Received the "Award for Meritorious Exchange with Exchange Students in Celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the System for Receiving Exchange Students (of the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture)


Major Publications

For Gaining Knowledge of the Immigration System
(Tokyo: The Relief Liaison Center, 1970).



Publications Produced by the Tokyo YWCA "Mothers of Exchange Students" Movement
Our History with Exchange Students (1971).
Exchange Students Appeal(1974).
Guidebook for Entrance into University for Exchange (1974).
What Is the Point of Receiving Exchange Students? A Report on the Present Conditions for Receiving in Universities (1976).

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