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KYOCERA Hosts 16th Cultural Exchange Tour for Chinese Children

30 elementary & middle school students spend seven days in Japan engaging in international exchange

July 23, 2015
As part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities, Kyocera Corporation (President: Goro Yamaguchi) hosted the 16th Cultural Exchange Tour for Chinese Children to visit and experience Japan with the goal of promoting international exchange. This year’s program was held from July 14th to the 20th.

Photo: Welcome reception held at Kyocera headquarters in Kyoto
Welcome reception held at Kyocera headquarters in Kyoto

The program aims to provide impressionable children with big dreams firsthand experience of different cultures so that they can in turn act as a bridge for China-Japan relations in the future. This is the 16th time the tour has been hosted, with a total of 454 children having taken part in the program since it was started in 1997. This year, 30 elementary and middle school students from Beijing and Tianjin participated in the tour.

The tour included visits to Osaka and Kyoto with a variety of programs to experience the culture and life in Japan. In Osaka Prefecture, the children visited popular spots such as Universal Studios Japan and also enjoyed sightseeing in Osaka City.

Photo: Children visiting a middle school in Kyoto Photo: Children visiting a middle school in Kyoto
Children visiting a middle school in Kyoto

During their stay in Kyoto, the children experienced Japanese traditional culture by visiting historical sites such as the Golden Pavilion “Kinkakuji” and participating in the Gion Festival, one of the three biggest festivals in Japan. In addition, they visited a middle school where they interacted with Japanese students by introducing Chinese paper cutout art and learning how to make “origami,” the traditional Japanese art of paper folding.

A reception was held at Kyocera’s headquarters to welcome the children and encourage them to utilize their discoveries in a different culture for their future. For the second half of the tour, the children experienced Japanese life through a three-day home stay with Kyocera Group employees.

Background and Purpose of the Program

The program was organized based on the experiences of Kazuo Inamori, founder and chairman emeritus of Kyocera Corporation, as he was deeply moved by cultural interaction during his first visit to the United States for a business trip. In 1976, Kyocera began inviting Japanese children on foreign tours, reflecting Inamori’s hope that providing children with opportunities to interact directly with foreign cultures will help them to develop broad perspectives and hold various dreams. In 1997, Kyocera began inviting Chinese children to Japan for school visits and home stays, in which they can interact with young people and experience Japanese culture.

In addition to this program, Kyocera has been making various efforts to help enhance the relationship between Japan and China, including assistance for the Japan-China Yangtze River Civilization Survey from 1995 to 2001 for research into the oldest civilization in China, and support for the Matsuyama Ballet Troup’s performance held in China in 2011 to commemorate the 40th anniversary of normalized diplomatic relations between the two countries celebrated in 2012. Furthermore, Kyocera and Inamori set up the Inamori-Kyocera Western Development Scholarship in 2001 with the purpose of assisting economically disadvantaged university students in China’s western provinces, which is granted at 12 universities each year with more than 3,800 recipients to date.

Through the cultural exchange tour, the company hopes for the children to grow up to become international citizens capable of establishing friendly relationships between Japan and China, and to lead prosperous and fruitful lives as leaders in various fields.