The RMI sent 24 middle school students with four teacher-chaperones to Hiroshima prefecture last week for a “real-life” experience in the culture, history, and peace-building ways of Japan and its people.
This year four outer islands were included in the program, but only two of these — Jaluit and Kili — responded in time to ensure each sent a participant along with other private and public schools in Majuro and Ebeye. In the future, the program aims to include four outer islands on a rotational basis to ensure that everyone gets a chance to participate.
The embassy prepared a video introduction on Japanese culture and basic greetings, in addition to karate and Japanese cuisine, which held the students in awe.
One of the sites the group will visit during its nine-day stay is known as the Itsukushima Shinto shrine on Miyajima Island, a world heritage site famous for its impression of floating on water and its massive torii gate that symbolizes one’s transition from the normal, mundane world into sacred grounds.
Ambassador Hideyuki Mitsuoka conveyed to the students his wish for them “see with your own eyes, hear with your own ears, and experience with your whole body,” and to later become a bridge between Japan and the Marshall Islands in the future.
Read more about this in the June 22, 2018 edition of the Marshall Islands Journal.