The JET alumni from Miyagi, Iwate and Fukushima are all a flutter about the latest newsletter from the Rocky Mountain and Pacific Northwest JET Alumni Associations a few days ago. It seems that if you were a former JET in Miyagi, Iwate or Fukushima and if you stayed for at least 2 years, MOFA and the Japanese Tourist Agency will send you to that area for a week to do PR work and help out. A friend sent me the email along with guidelines for applying. JETwit.com also published an article about the potential for former JETs to return to their old stomping grounds. I’m currently going through the motions of finding it if non-American alumni can apply. Hopefully that’ll be the case. If anyone has any information about this other than the links I’ve provided please put it in the comments below. I’ll update this blog with the response I get from the embassy here in Ottawa as soon as I have it. If you’re an American and ex-JET from one of the three prefectures listed, look into this if you want to go.
Here are the guidelines:
This message is being posted on behalf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Japan Tourism Agency
DEADLINE for applications to be received by the Consulate-General of Japan: July 11, 2011
INVITATION PROGRAM OF JET ALUMNI TO DISASTER STRICKEN AREAS IN TOHOKU:
- One week stay to take place within the period of July – September 2011
- Transportation to Japan & per diem provided.
Conditions for application:
2. CONDITIONS FOR PARTICIPATION
(1) No limit of ages and sexes.
(2) To have a work experience for two years or more either as a Coordinator for International Relations (CIR) or as an Assistant Language Teacher (ALT) in local governments in Iwate Prefecture, Miyagi Prefecture, Fukushima Prefecture or Sendai City.
(3) To be able to contact directly by themselves with a school and a local government where they were assigned.
(4) To be accepted by the organization for which the participants worked as a JET, and to be able to arrange with the organization some exchange activities.
(5) To be able to travel without an escort from their arrival to their departure from Japan.
(6) To send out the information such as their experiences of the stay in Japan this time and their impressions from foreign visitors’ viewpoints by various measures including contributions of articles to the mass media, blogs, homepages, facebooks.
(7) To consent interviews by Japanese and foreign medias, in case they are arranged during their stay
For full details & required form, see attached documents.
Additional eligibility stipulation for Fukushima-ken applicants:
For any former Fukushima JETs, who are considering applying for the previously posted “Special Invitation Program” for JETAA to re-visit their CO’s to report on the post-disaster situation, special consideration is being taken regarding personal safety.
In respect for the official US guidelines of an 80 km radius from the Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, applications for former Fukushima JETs will only be accepted for areas beyond the US recommended safety zone.
UPDATE: Thanks to a friend, I’ve managed to dig up a few more documents. This is the letter outlining the program in Japanese that can be sent to Contracting Organization. And the confirmation of acceptance form is here. Doesn’t really give a good indication of how it works, but in my friend’s correspondence with an embassy, it seems that the details are slowly trickling in.
UPDATE 2 (06/28/2011 6pm): Just got an email back from the Ottawa Embassy. Good news is that information is still trickling in and that Canadians can apply, I assume that means that JETs from all countries can apply. I’ve also heard that there are only 20 spots available worldwide. Let the competition begin!
An update from JETAA Ottawa has been posted regarding this on their website. Is it just me or do the guidelines seem a bit fuzzy?