Please support continuation of our Otonarisan Family-Friend Program (OFP)

It’s been 3 amazing years since the start of our Otonarisan Family-Friend Program (OFP). Over the past 3 years, we have been able to grow from 10 plus to just under 800 members, resulting in realization of about 400 Otonarisan pairs in our community.

The OFP has evolved from simply being a one-way “supporting/being supported” relationship to a community building initiative that fosters and actively targets “mutually supporting“  relationship based upon mutual trust between foreign residents living in Japan and local Otonarisan volunteers. Furthermore, our support activities range is widening from not just OFP but to coping with various needs of the foreign residents including; daily life consultation, Japanese language study assistance, Ukrainian refugees support, and more.

However, as you are already aware of, these activities are performed by OFP on exclusively non-profit basis. Membership fees received from successful OFP pairs are utilized to fund part of our operation costs as well as transportation costs of the volunteers. In addition, we have also been receiving some subsidies to partially fund our activities. However, as we grow bigger as an institution with the aim to increase OFP members, these existing funds cannot fully cover all the costs of our daily increasing activities. Thus, we are in need of strong support from the society to continue our non-profit activities.

Please lend your hand to support continuation of our activities.

There are various ways to support us, so if you intend to help us, please consider the following.

1) Direct support (donation of \1,000 and above)

2) One-time support A, also helping us to apply for certified NPO* (one-time donation of \3,000 and above)

3) Continuous support B, also helping us to apply for certified NPO (continuous donation of \3,000 and above annually, multiple donations accepted, will promote you to become our supporting member**)

4) You can also support us by introducing appropriate contacts leading to corporate donations or organizing pro bono fundraising.

*: To become a certified NPO, we need to have a track record of receiving annual average donations of over \3000 from more than 100 people for a period of 2 years.

**: As recognition of your contribution, supporting members will be invited to our annual general meeting.

Please support us by entering our home page as shown below.

We received following favorable feedbacks and comments from the local OFP participants.

Up until now, a wide range of people, from high school students to senior citizens, being businessmen, students, housewives, teachers, etc., have been actively participating as Otonarisan volunteers.

  • Children’s as well as parents’ age were similar, and we live nearby so we were able to meet about once a month.We were able to exchange information regarding difference in raising children between USA and Japan.
  • As friends, I was able to contribute, and she also contributed. Although we were of the same generation, we rew up in a completely different environment resulting in many new findings. Besides, her character was so nice.
  • We put precedence on each other’s family situations and schedules and were able to interact without too much burden. Also, felt more intimacy as our meetings increased.
  • Since our kids were of similar age, we were able to befriend and socialize on family basis.
  • Not to mention how much I enjoyed interacting during the 6 months OFP period, our friendship grew to a asting relationship.
  • In the course of practicing Japanese for Y-san, I was able to attain new information such as Y-san’s home ground culture.

As for foreign participants, there were parents raising children, working in Japan as businessmen, students and ostgraduates in Japanese language schools and universities, and self-employed people.

We were able to receive many encouraging comments too.

  • We have the same hobby and interest so it’s fun to talk to!
  • She is very kind and friendly. I learned many things from her.
  • I am overall very happy.  I feel lucky to be paired with Y-san.
  • E-san is very helpful and responsive, fun to be friends with and does not impose anything on the friendship. She is simply a wonderful person.
  • I’ve learned a lot from M-san over the past 6 months, and also really enjoyed her company.
  • It seems like a good fit. We have a lot in common and have a good time when we see each other.
  • It was really nice just being able to have pleasant conversations and ask about life/culture in Japan.

Until now, foreigners living in Japan didn’t have sufficient means nearby to resolve and navigate whatever troubles or shortfalls they encountered in their daily lives. This situation resulted in foreigners not being able to sufficiently blend into the Japanese society letting them feel “distance” from the local Japanese.

The intent of our various activities starting with OFP, is to become a solution to these needs.

We want to facilitate foreign residents living in Japan to blend into daily Japanese life and to make friends with the locals more easily. Furthermore, we wish to have Otonarisan volunteers make direct contact with foreign residents to have more interpersonal experience in various issues and deepen mutual understandings amongst each other. It is our strong belief that in order to achieve true diversity, cultural coexistence and sustainable Japanese society, building up such relationship is indispensable.

Thus, we would like to request you to participate together in our challenge and let us continue our activities.

Please give us your support and assistance!