One important project the Australia Japan Society of Victoria is involved in is
the Asian Pacific Childrens Convention facilitated in Fukuoka Japan.
The APCC was created as one of the commemorative events of the 1989 Asian-Pacific Exposition to celebrate the 100th year since the founding of Fukuoka City. It is a civic movements funded by local governments as well as donations from corporate sponsors and the Supporters’ Association. The theme is: We are the BRIDGE: we connect dreams around the world. In 1998, APCC founded the Bridge Club, an international network of former APCC participants. The Bridge Club has branch organisations in a number of the participating countries and regions which work to promote peace and co-existence between it’s members and the wider community.
Our vision embraces the idea of modern cultural interaction, through the creation of a place where children can experience first-hand our differences and similarities, fostering friendships and peace between participating countries and regions of the Asia-Pacific. It is our hope that children who participate in this exchange program will make long-lasting, “OMOIYARI” friendships with their fellow peers coming from various cultures and backgrounds.
The three objectives of the APCC are:
- to generate appreciation for a variety of cultures through exchanges between children from all over the Asia-Pacific region.
- to promote mutual understanding throughout the Asia-Pacific region.
- to raise young people with a global perspective who will work to increase international awareness in their local community.
To achieve these objectives, the APCC has six projects:
Mission Project which offers children from Fukuoka an opportunity to go overseas and deepen their intercultural understanding through participating in a program of Homestay, school visits and cultural activities with local children.
(It is anticipated that the Australia Japan Society of Victoria will host a group of 12 - 17 year olds from APCC Fukuoka in Japan 2010 - if you are interested in being a host family, please email Heather at email@example.com)
Invitation Project which invites Junior Ambassadors from the Asian-Pacific region to visit Fukuoka and promote their international understanding through intercultural exchange programs such as Homestay, School Visits and Exchange Camps in Fukuoka, Japan.
(for 22 years the Australia Japan Society has selected eight children to participate in this project held in Fukuoka each July. Applications open for the 2011 project).
Exchange Project which promotes cultural exchange by children who are participating in the Invitation Project with the people in Fukuoka, through various events:
- School Visit: JA’s will attend elementary school with their host for 4 days where they will experience life in a Japanese school. Japanese school children will have the opportunity to make friends with these children.
- Chaperone Symposium – Symposium where educators from the participating Asian-Pacific countries and from Fukuoka exchange ideas about culture and education.
- Performance Event: “We are the Bridge” – a chance for citizens of Fukuoka to watch a multicultural show of song and dance performed by the JA’s.
- Junior Ambassadors’ Presentation Event – Energy and Ecology forum – an opportunity for JA’s and children from representative Japanese elementary schools to make multimedia presentations based on the themes of environment and energy.
Support Project which is promote the establishment of the BRIDGE CLUB (BC) to act as an alumni association for former APCC participants and to plan and support new projects.
- Bridge Club Support Project: to promote the establishment of BC’s in each participating country and network with them.
- Fundraising Project – to promote fundraising and increase awareness of the APCC and make a new system to provide incentives for a steady flow of funds into the APCC.
Information Sharing Project to develop a network which APCC participants can share their knowledge and experience and learn from each other:
· Network – to edit the APCC homepage, to produce the annual newsletter.
· Charity campaign – to promote the work of the APCC though the sale of charity goods and PR activities.
· Publicity – to advertise for participants and volunteers through out the local media.
Human Resource Development Project
- recruit volunteers through advertisements placed in local press and other media outlets
- hold regular meetings from registration, explanation and sign up volunteers
- promote friendship and co-operation between volunteers
- personnel training – internship project etc.