|Japan's Impressive Green Efforts
Contributed in Sept, 2008
Throughout the trip we had the opportunity to listen to lectures by experts on Japan’s experience with environmental issues and environmental education and to visit schools and NGO’s. Many of these left a memorable impression on us especially the preservation of Naramachi where residents still maintain the architecture and atmosphere of the old city. We were also privileged to experience the natural environment of rice terrraces with the senior citizen members of Ikoma Tanada rice terrace club. We also understood the history of active citizenry in action at the former Teshima Island illegal dumping ground which is now being re-habilitated. At the Learning and Ecological Activities Foundation for children (LEAF) we saw how the Eco-card programme has been successfully implemented.
The hospitality and friendliness of Japanese people especially when we could not speak the language was very touching, and we had so much fun with our host families! We enjoyed aspects of Japanese culture such as the making of Kyoto Wagashi sweets, listening to a Japanese musical performance and had the opportunity to try the wonderful Japanese cuisine.
At the Symposium on the last day of the JENESYS program, the Singapore team was proud to present on behalf of all participants the post program plans after our trip. In the short term, an e-newsletter on the various programs or activities shall be contributed and compiled to update everyone on the environmental programs that are taking place in the various countries. Singapore representative Kelly from the Green Volunteers Network and Underwater World Singapore was one of the contributors for this inaugural e-newsletter. In the long term, a blog or website would be set up and supported by the Japan Foundation.
In conclusion, the four of us would like to express our deepest appreciation to the Japan Embassy in Singapore and the Japan Foundation for giving us the wonderful opportunity to network with like-minded individuals from the Asia-Pacific and to learn about Japan’s culture and impressive green efforts. Doomo arigato gozaimasu!