All posts by HAJET Webmaster

2016 HAJET Summer Meeting RSVP

Have you seen the trees lately? Have you seen the lakes and rivers? Have you seen the sun shining merrily all day? AND DO YOU KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS?

Time for the HAJET Summer Meeting. Lake Toya, campfires, late nights, tents and, at last, t-shirt weather. And the choir sung Glory Hallelujah unto the heavens and all was right in the world.

I don’t think I need to go into much detail here. Not only because the Summer Meeting’s reputation probably precedes it, but because we’ve got an info pack with all the detail you could want. Check it out below, then fill out the RSVP form online. Alternately, you can print out, fill out, scan, and email back the ’email-back form’, if pen is more your style. Find the info below.


INFO PACK // English  / Japanese



Fukushima Women’s Sumo Tournament

Are you a lady who is interested in learning a bit about Japan’s sumo wrestling culture? Have you ever wanted to try it yourself?

Here’s your chance to participate in a female-only sumo competition hosted by Fukushima-cho in the south!

Fukushima-cho is the hometown of two renowned sumo champions (yokozuna), Chiyonoyama and Chiyonofuji. This is the 24th year the event is being held. The participants are all female, but the age ranges from young (the minimum age to participate is 18) to old, and in recent years fellow JETs have joined this event as participants and competed in some powerful matches!

Here are some more details of the event:

Sunday, May 8 2015
9:30 – around 14:00

Kagamiyama Park (Fukushima Daijinguu)
Matsumae-gun, Fukushima-cho, Aza-fukushima 219

Ladies over the age of 18

How much?
2000 yen to participate (paid by registered mail (Genkin Kakitome), or in person at Fukushima-cho office)
Free to come watch

Not only do the winners get fabulous prizes including cash, there are prizes and souvenirs for all participants, too!

How do I apply?
Fill out this form below and send it, with 2000 yen cash, by registered mail to Fukushima Tourism Association:

〒049-1392 北海道 松前郡 福島町 字福島 820番地
Hokkaido, Matsumae-gun, Fukushima-cho, Azafukushima 820-banchi
Fukushima Tourism Association

The deadline to apply is Wednesday, April 22 (or when it reaches the max number of participants, 64 people), so get your applications in early!

Please direct them to Fukushima Tourism Association:
Phone 0139-47-3004
(You should be able to e-mail them in English)

What else?
If you’re not so inclined to participate but want to watch, or you are into photography, there is also a photo contest! Attend the event, take some amazing shots of these wonderful wrestlers, and send them to Fukushima-cho to win great prizes.
And no, you don’t have to be a lady to take the photos!

Apply here:

Can I do anything else at the event?
This year, Fukushima Tourism Association is calling for female volunteers in judging/call-out of participants, too. If you have communicative Japanese skills, and you would like to take part in this event as a volunteer, please contact the association at the e-mail above.


Social Coordinator Election

Looks like we’ve got someone stepping up to bat to coordinate you, socially. Who is that? Wait, it’s… it’s…


Kelsey Fast

Why I want to run for Social Coordinator, and why I would be good at it:

I live in the city of Hakodate, which is nearly as southernly as you can get in Hokkaido. It’s not exactly a fast trip up the high way to see the rest of Hokkaido. Yet in my first year here I feel like I’ve done a decent job of exploring the Prefecture and meeting people. HAJET events have been a good reason to travel, to go to events like HAJET meetings and the Sapporo Yuki Matsuri. I also feel like I’ve made friends who make the long trips worth it.

My first year here has been full of the excitement and adventure that I was missing back home. Experiencing organized events with other ALT’s have been some of my best memories yet, and I would like to participate in some way in the Hokkaido community in a larger way.

I feel like I would be a good Social Coordinator because I have a lot of interest in enjoying the rest of the year together with both our current group as well as the newbies arriving in Summer. I think despite me living in one of the more difficult to reach places in Hokkaido I have gotten to know many of you pretty well. I’m not saying I am the worlds biggest social butterfly, but I enjoy meeting new people and trying new things together.

I want to hear about any events you are planning in your town, any cool festivals you have going on, or just even if you are thinking of marathoning the Lord of the Rings or something and want company. Also, I worked as an Administrative Assistant previous to coming to Japan, and I feel pretty confidant in organizing information, planning and getting the message out to everyone who needs to hear about it.



MORIUMIUS Spring Volunteer Program

I was contacted recently by Gentaro Yui of Moriumius, a 93-year old school in Miyagi that has been renovated into a cernter for children to lean about sustainability and the 2011 earthquake through interacting with locals. Moriumius runs two one-week programs in spring from March 26 – April 9 and they’re looking for JET volunteers!


Job Description: Organize camp programs for local and domestic children as well as some international children visiting the Moriumius center in Ogatsu Town, Ishinomaki City, in Miyagi Prefecture. Be in charge of children’s group to ensure safety and participate in hands-on experiences including fishery, agriculture, forestry, cooking, and arts/crafts. JET members may also be requested to lead some children’s activities.

Cost: JETs would be responsible for transportation to and from Moriumius, but all lodging and food is provided.

ApplicationMORIUMIUS 2016 JET application form Send this application form, filled out, to The deadline is March 16, 2016.




AJET Gazette

AJET is collecting submissions for the next issue of the AJET newsletter. If you have anything you want to shout out about or that you have been working on, it would be a great opportunity to spread the word (they have over 7000 subscribers). You can view the September edition here to get an idea of the style of the newsletter and the kind of things that have been covered in the past.

Send 150-200 words of copy, along with an attached image, to Emily Schuster by Monday, March 14, and she’ll make sure it gets in the next issue! Jeepers.

It’s a Very Chippubetsu Christmas Charlie Brown

Hot dang is Chippubetsu’s ALT and HAJET’s departing VP and AJET Block 1 Rep Emily Schuster a busy bee.  Hot on the heels of the Thanksgiving dinner she brought to Chippubetsu, she hosted a gingerbread-house-making event with her schools.  They assembled gingerbread houses (and all the frosting shenanigans that entails) and wrote cards about what they want for Christmas to deck the halls. I know that gingerbread houses sort of have grandmother-ey feel to them but take a look at the pictures below and tell us that you don’t just want to gobble one of those things up.

By all accounts it was a marvelous time and real Christmas joy was felt by all. Quote one student, “Boy oh boy I’m feeling a lot of real Christmas joy right now!”*

(Emily later provided HAJET with the receipts for the gingerbread and HAJET was all like, “You did a real good job promoting grassroots internationalization. This event is on us.” And that’s how HAJET came to fund the event. The end.)

Check out the pictures below and try not to think about how any valid excuses to make gingerbread houses are still like 10 months away. :/

2015-12-22 14.47.30 IMG_9529 2016-01-19 08.39.40

*None of the students actually said that, but we’re pretty sure that at least a couple of them thought it.