Learning in Hawaii – Nature, Culture and Aloha Spirit
4th “Hawaii Tohoku Rainbow” Project Tour
Many volunteers came together and opted to help the children affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake and the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant incident. This lead to the creation of the preceding project called, “Rainbow for Japan Kids,” in summer of 2011. Targeting children (mostly junior high school students), we invited them to the abundant natures of Hawaii. This program aimed to introduce the Aloha Spirit to the children and to let them meet with the locals to learn the unique cultures of Hawaii.
The inaugural “Rainbow for Japan Kids” project was held in July 2011 and there have been over 10 projects until summer of 2016, bringing a total of 194 students over the years. In fall of 2016, a new educational program called, “Hawaii-Tohoku Rainbow Project” (targeting high school students) started, replacing the previous project.
The goal of this program is for you to discover your hopes and dreams in order to create a clear path to your future. In Hawaii you will experience the nature, culture, history between Hawaii and Japan, and a cultural exchange with the locals.
Mitsunori Yoshida, Delegation Leader, Department of Education – Department Head
Practice Study Session
For the study program this year, we had the Niu Valley Middle School principal Mr. Tajima and Ms. Miyahara come over to our meeting. During this meeting, we had the 9th grade students who have experienced the study abroad program teach the 8th grade students how to introduce themselves in English. Also, with help from the “Sera Town Sing and Dance Group,” we sang the Sera Town theme song, as well as played musical chairs. I believe the fun times we shared brought us closer together by the time we finished our meeting.
Also, we went over four subjects during the study session: the Hawaiian history, culture and peace; English speaking practice; and the presentation practice for Niu Valley Middle School. By going through multiple study sessions, the students prepared themselves for Hawaii, and by the end of the sessions, they were filled with motivation and resolution.
Through the Study Abroad Program, the children of Niu Valley Middle School warmly welcomed our students with great hospitality. In October, Mr. Uwaine and his two students from Niu Valley Middle School visited Sera Town. To return the favor, the two student leaders along with the other students showed them around the school and had planned many cultural exchange opportunities for them to participate in.
The study abroad program went beyond border, race, culture and language, and has expanded to become a large place for cultural exchange between schools. A proposal that one of our students has made, has blossomed into connecting the hearts of the people of Sera Town and Hawaii. As I am blessed to be here with all of you today, I in turn feel a great obligation to further develop the task at hand.
In conclusion, I give my thanks to the people at Niu Valley Middle School, Honolulu Hiroshima Kenjin Kai, the HGEF crew, and all of the people of Sera who has lent us a hand, because of all of your support we were able to hold this rich study program. Again, thank you all so much.
Sera Town Junior High School study abroad program, greetings by the Executive Committee Chariman
Yoshinobu Tadano, Executive Committee Chairman
It was the first time this June that two students from Niu Valley Middle School came to visit Sera Town.
I am glad to see that the students were able to go through such a fulfilling experience, especially through the homestay program that they were most looking forward to. They used all of the ways possible to hold conversations with their host families and to familiarize themselves with the new culture. Also, after listening to all of their comments, it was evident that they had widened their scope and had learned what peace really was. After seeing the faces of the students when they had returned, I was proud to see that they had grown as a human being.
Thanks to all of your help, the students had a wonderful learning experience.
Below are the reflections written by two of our students.
- During our trip when we visited Roosevelt High School, both students from either school gave a presentation on their own countries, and we also handed them souvenirs. I had no idea that communicating to another person who speaks a different language would be this difficult and nerve-racking. Although when my message got across, I felt so happy that I wanted to learn how to speak better English. While experiencing how difficult it was to overcome the language barrier, I also learned the importance of the words we use every day. I would definitely like to go to Hawaii again.
- The trip to Hawaii exceeded the word “fun” and became “happiness.” I have never felt anything like this before. My trip was something that taught me that there was such a thing that exceeded fun, which was happiness. This was the first time I have visited a foreign country. After experiencing this foreign place, I found that there was so much more to the world I live in. So, I seriously thought that I wanted to experience more of the world out there. I’m still 16 years old, which means I still have a long way to go, so, I would like to visit many other countries. It’s a simple concept, but when you go somewhere you haven’t been to, there are many things that you have never experienced before. I am but a” frog in the well,” therefore, I would definitely like to learn what it feels to be in the “great ocean,” so I would first like to start with the things around me, like club activities and school.
The other students have mentioned that they wanted to improve their English, after the cultural exchange with the Roosevelt students.
I would like to thank you again for giving the students this wonderful opportunity to grow as a human being.
Keiko Takamiya, Teacher, Ehime Prefectural Matsuyama Minami High School
To: Hawaii Global Education Foundation
Hello Ms. Miyahara, and the Hawaii Fukuoka Kenjin Kai members, I hope to find you in good health.
Thank you so much for creating such a great program for the Global Stage 2014 in Hawaii.
The participants have received a great impact from meeting the Fukuoka Kenjin members, Japanese Americans, and Japanese people who have made accomplishments in the U.S. I thank you again for all of the hard work that had gone into making this wonderful program.
The participants of the program have learned the history of the immigrants and all of the hard work that was required for them to get to such a high social status. This motivated the participants to surpass their previous set goals and further expand their knowledge.
Meeting the Kenjin Kai members, host family, college students, and all other people who helped us out, I believe that we have built a stronger relationship between Fukuoka and the Hawaii Fukuoka Kenjin Kai members. I am happy to announce that the next step will be for the program participants to be the ones to further develop the relationship.
We hope for Ms. Miyahara’s continued success and well-being.
Director, Global Stage in Hawaii
(Department Director, Fukuoka International Exchange Foundation)
To: Hawaii Global Education Foundation
Director, Ms. Mayumi Miyahara
Hello, this is Nabuyoshi Satou from the Nagaoka Board of Education.
Thank you so much for your support during our visit to Honolulu.
I appreciate your suggestions, scheduling and planning for the school visit; and the overall outline creation of the Peace and Future Symposium, which is an important part of the Youth and Peace Exchange program. I express my sincere gratitude to you, Ms. Onishi, Mr. Hawkins, and the staff at the Pacific Aviation Museum for the excellent meeting we had. Thank you all so much.
I humbly request for your cooperation for the further development of the Youth and Peace Interaction program.
I hope that the “Message of Peace NAGAOKA x HONOLULU” will deepen our bonds, while we share the thoughts of consolation, making the day a great opportunity to send a message of peace, and we are sure that this event will be a great success. I feel honored to be able to work with all of you and it is our greatest pleasure to spend time together with all of you.
I hope to see you all again in August.
With my utmost gratitude,
Nagaoka City Board of Education
(excerpted from documents)
Hawaii global Education Foundation
Miyahara K. Mayumi
As we welcome 2018, I wanted to personally thank you for supporting
our teams and department with your donation. I apologize for the delay
in thanking you but last semester was a whirlwind and catching up took
longer than I expected.
We appreciate all the support we receive from our Sharks ohana. Your
gift directly assists our teams in areas such as equipment, recruiting,
facilities and coaching and allows us to continue the great tradition of
academic and athletic success at HPU. There are only 4 schools in our
state that provide the opportunity of intercollegiate athletics and due to
your generosity, we can continue to offer a competitive and nationally
As this January, halftime is over and we look to finish the year strong.
Our basketball, baseball, softball, golf, tennis and acrobatics & tumbling
programs are competitive now. We will welcome our next class of Hall of
Famers in February and our student-athletes are busy at community
service activities around the island. Last semester, our teams’ GPA
average was a 3.18 and we hope to increase that before the end of the
Thank you again for all you do for our students-athletes, coaches and
staff. We are proud to represent our university and appreciate you
providing us the means to do so. Go Sharks!
Executive Director, Athletics
Hawaii Pacific University
Hawaii Global Education Foundation
Ms. Mayumi Miyahara
Ms. Nikki Thompson
I hope to find Ms. Miyahara and Ms. Thompson in good health.
Thank you for providing excellent hospitality services for the Fukuoka Prefectural Assembly. We truly appreciated your help in arranging our appointment, coordinating our schedules, meeting guidance, interpreting, and everything else that you did for us.
We were able to meet our goals on our visit, and it was a very meaningful one. Thank you very much.
As we enter the 35th anniversary of our sister-state relationship, we would like to continue the friendly relationship we have with the state of Hawaii and to further build upon this relationship. We would like to have Ms. Miyahara and Ms. Thompson’s continued help for our future endeavors.
We would like to wish both of you continued good health and success in the future.
Fukuoka Prefectural Assembly, Chairman