The Japan Foundation awarded the grant to Franklin County Public Schools.

Ferrum, Va. (Oct. 6, 2016) – Japanese Outreach Initiative Coordinator Taiki Sawabe, who is hosted by Ferrum College, recently helped Franklin County Public Schools secure a Japan Foundation Grant to support their “Japanese Language Advocacy Project in Southwestern Virginia” project. The grant will cover the costs for flash cards kits, Hiragana flashcards, Hiragana posters, Kamishibai kits, Origami papers, Japanese folktales picture books, Japanese learning books for beginners, GENKI textbooks and teacher’s manual, calligraphy sets, and kendama toys.

Sawabe is at Ferrum College for two years to share Japanese language and culture with the local community. According to Vice President of Academic Affairs Gail Summer, Sawabe’s work at the College and in surrounding public schools should help discourage stereotypes, provide perspectives on Japan and Japanese culture and thinking, and celebrate US and Japanese similarities over differences in order to encourage effective communication. Sawabe will also deepen his understanding of the US and its citizens, which he will share when he returns to Japan.