March 28, 2019
Four JICA experts who returned to Japan after working in various countries were granted an audience with Their Imperial Highnesses Prince and Princess Akishino, Princess Mako and Princess Kako at Akishino Residence in Moto-Akasaka, Tokyo, on March 8. The experts reported on their work abroad.
Returned JICA experts have been granted audiences with Their Imperial Highnesses Prince and Princess Akishino in groups of four to five since March 2004. On this 18th such occasion, JICA experts who had worked in Asia, Africa and Oceania were granted an audience.
The four experts who were granted an audience with JICA President Shinichi Kitaoka. From left are Koji Kuroiwa, Tomoaki Tsugawa, Mr. Kitaoka, Junko Nakazawa and Shingo Takahashi
Participants from 10 countries take a training course for basic observation in Nadi, Fiji.
Fom 2014 to 2018, based in Fiji, Koji Kuroiwa vigorously promoted support for the training of meteorological technicians in Oceania.
As this region is exposed to the threat of climate change as well as the natural hazards of cyclones and heavy rains, capacity building for meteorological services is a major issue. Through training activities in meteorology, for four years he steadily improved the training capacity of the Fiji Meteorological Service and created a structure to lead human resource development in the region.
Irrigation facilities built by a village's residents' group.
Tomoaki Tsugawa worked in Bhutan on community development with resident participation and to build a mechanism to strengthen the ties between local government and communities from 2015 to 2018.
In the past, at village-level meetings, only some residents would talk about village events and development. So, he created smaller residents' group in each village to give opportunities to women and young people to proactively contribute. Based on those discussions, some villages built irrigation facilities. He also carried out training in Tokushima Prefecture, Japan, to share experiences related to resident self-help and relations with the local government.
Improvements to the operation of school management committees led to more frequent remedial lessons and improved basic arithmetic skills.
As an education adviser to the Ghana education Service, Ministry of Education, in Ghana, from 2015 to February 2019, Junko Nakazawa developed a model for school management through community participation and supported schools and communities to improve pupils’ learning environments as well as to reinforce their arithmetic skills.
At the district level, she put on training for school principals and members of school management committees (SMCs). At all target schools, democratic elections were held to elect representatives of SMCs. The SMCs worked with community members and parents to develop school plan for each school. And all stakeholders at schools themselves worked to improve their school environments, including by procuring blackboards and teaching and learning materials. Because basic arithmetic skills of pupils in primary school were low, the project supported remedial lessons with arithmetic workbooks at pilot schools. As a result, the basic arithmetic skills of the pupils improved greatly.
A demonstration in a school's pond to disseminate techniques of small-scale aquaculture to residents.
Shingo Takahashi was the chief adviser of a project to extend small-scale aquaculture to improve the livelihood of residents in the central dry zone of Myanmar from 2014 to March 2019.
In the central dry zone, where poverty is severe, the project aimed to help residents grow fish such as carp and tilapia in small ponds and paddy fields to provide a protein and income source. The project adopted a three-step approach in which it taught aquaculture techniques to the extension officials of the Fisheries Bureau, who then taught key farmers to be core farmers in the area, and finally, the core farmers taught neighboring farmers. The practice spread among farmers and the number who began fish aquaculture increased.
The four experts' comments after the meeting included: "They asked questions that showed deep knowledge no matter the country or the field of work." "I was grateful that they remembered that I guided them once 15 years ago." "I am grateful that they created a comfortable atmosphere and showed great consideration." "They listened with feelings of appreciation for our work."