Experiencing Japan – JENESYS 2.0 Batch 3

The Land of the Rising Sun. We came. We conquered.

36 young, vibrant, enthusiastic, visionary delegates where chosen to represent the Philippines in the Japan-East Asia Network of Exchange for Students and Youths (JENESYS) 2.0 Batch 3 and were flown to Japan last June 23-30 2013 for a week long activities of getting to know Japan at the same time meeting and making friends with other ASEAN Youth delegates.


The Purpose

ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asia Nations) are setting for the Integration in 2015 with the three pillars: ASEAN Politico-Security Community, ASEANEconomic Community and ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community. ASEAN Economic Community (hereafter AEC), one of the pillars will play an important role for the future success of the ASEAN Integration,whose objectives are not only focused on being integrated itself, but also on facilitation the continuous development of the region. (Handbook 0607)

With the theme ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Youth Network: Preparing for the Involvement and Contributions of Youths to the AEC Through ASEAN-Japan Youth Exchange Program, It aims to:

1) To raise awareness of the university students of ASEAN member countries towards ASEAN Integration and ASEAN Economic Integration (AEC) and to let the young generation of Japan to deepen the understanding of ASEAN countries and AEC.

2) To learn about the activities of Japan and the key success factors for the economic revitalization in each area and toutilize the ideas for the economic development of each ASEAN member country.

3) To establish the AEC Youth Network to be given the function as a hub linking the young generation of the ASEAN member states and Japan for the future cooperation of the mutual benefit.

The Participants

All the 10 ASEAN member states participated in the project: The program composed of groups of university students from the various backgrounds in
Economics & Social Sciences, Science & Technology and Arts, creative works, & culture.

Each members from the ASEAN states were divided then grouped to form 30 members composed 3 delegates from each country. They are then assigned to the different regions and prefectures of Japan for lectures and tours.

All expenses and accommodations  where covered by the organizers Japan International Cooperation Center (JICE) in cooperation with National Youth Commission of the Philippines



Group Name:  Mie C at  Mie Prefecture

Delegates from the Philippines are Bernadas, Irene Tia (MSU, Iligan), Carim, Nurhalim S.  (MSU, Marawi) and Lagmay, Wyona Dizon (UM, Davao).

Region:  Chubu

A summary of the activities are narrated:

DAY 1 – Pre-departure Orientation/MOA Signing

  • The Philippine delegates were gathered for the first time at Bayview Park Hotel for the pre-departure orientation with the JICC and NYC staff.

  • The Memorandum of Agreement between the delegates and the NYC was signed.

DAY 1 Filipino delegates unite during the Pre-departure Orientation and Signing of MOA

DAY 2 – Departure and arrival in Japan

  • The 36 Philippine Youth Ambassadors were met by Commissioner Georgina Nava at NAIA Terminal 1 then the delegates departed Philippines at 2:00pm via Japan Airlines and arrived at Narita International Airport around 7:25 in the evening, and were billeted at the Hotel Nikko Narita.

Day 2 ~ Happy and Excited. Flying high to represent the Philippines!

DAY 3 – Program Orientation with other ASEAN States Delegates

  • All delegates from ASEAN states were gathered at “Tsuru” for the program orientation and each group were assembled for the first time with their respective coordinators then had a dinner.

Day 3 ~ Arrival Orientation for the entire program

Day 3 - General Orientation

DAY 4 – AEC Lecture and Visit to Odaiba

  • From Hotel Nikko Narita the delegates moved to National Olympics Memorial Youth Center and had the lecture by the Secretary General of ASEAN-Japan Center, the Director of Trade and Investment Division and by the Director of Tourism and Exchange Division.

  • In the afternoon, the delegates spent their free time at Odaiba, taking pictures, roaming around and some shopping.

Day 4 - Tokyo bound for lecture & general orientation. Free time in Odaiba and Akihabara

DAY 5 – Mie Total Cultural Center (Mie Center for the Arts)

  • From the Hotel Metropolitan Edmont, the delegates traveled by bus to Tokyo Station. Then from there, the group traveled to Nagoya City for 2 hours by the Shinkansen Hikari (Bullet Train).

  • Once arrived at Nagoya, the group were met by two other coordinators, Misami San and one from the JICE.

  • After lunch the group visited Mie Total Culture Center were  lecture was conducted by the Mie Prefecture Government. They discussed some of the advantages of Mie like high technology, advanced development in life innovations, proactive in developing international strategies, contribute to the growth of developing countries through technology, and first rate tourist attractions and historic cultures.

  • After the lecture and a video presentation of a Ninja Demonstration, the students were divided into groups for a workshop. Each group is composed of 10 members, one representative from each participating countries. The group were to discuss what they learned before going to Japan and then their initial findings during the start of the program. The group also discussed about the ASEAN Economic Community and the possible impacts it has.

  • After the workshop the group moved to a restaurant for dinner before heading to the Hotel, Tsu Miyako.

Day 5 - Delegates from Group Mie C moved to Mie Prefecture from Tokyo via Shinkansen. Lecture from Mie Prefectural Gov't and then Workshop I

DAY 6 – Exchange program at Suzuka International University and Home Visit

  • The delegates left to Suzuka City by bus to the Suzuka International University. There a program was prepared comprising of several sessions and open discussions in which students from the university were also encouraged for active participation.

  • One topic was conducted by Mr. Tokishige Shimoda, President on Consortium for Industry-University-Government Interaction and Dr. Ananda Kumara, Professor of SIU and Director General of the Ceylon Gourd Project, entitled “On the Regional Vitalization through Industry-University-Government Collaboration: Lessons from the Ceylon Gourd Project in the Suzuka City”.

  • Another interesting discussion was about the educational ideas and aim of the school, the Suzuka International University molds students who are effective on the international stage with abilities to adapt to the global trend of time and analyse the social situation

  • In the afternoon the delegates traveled to Shima City to check in at Exceed Nemuno Sato. A hotel with Japanese-Western combination style and a Japanese Style Hot Spring Bath called “onsen” for communal use.

  • After checking in, a brief orientation with the coordinators for the home visit program took place and afterwards the group was introduced to the respective host families.

Day 6 - The delegates went to Suzuka Int'l University for student exchange and also they experienced home visit with local families in Shima City

DAY 7 – Visit to Shima City

  • The group went to Nakiri Fishing Port to visit the Marui Himonoten to learn about “himono”.

  • Afterwards the group visited the place of the “Ama” women divers. The huts are called Amagoya which are built on the beach that the Ama use to rest, to warm themselves, and to change their clothes. Some fresh fish, shellfish, and the famous abalone were grilled on charcoal brazier inside the shed. In which after they were cooked, the delegates took a feast on these rare delicacies.

  • Then the delegates had a short visit to the town’s Lighthouse to take a catch on the amazing view of the sea facing the Pacific Ocean and the Shima City.

  • After lunch on a Japanese set menu, the group visited Houwa-en, a nursing care home for the elderlies. The staff from the nursing home toured the group inside the building and the facilities they used in the nursing home.

  • Then the group visited the Honda Cars Ise-Shima Daio Branch for an observation on automobile servicing. They also displayed the latest Honda electric car, the hybrid model 2013.

  • The last itinerary for the day is to visit the Deguchi Shinju for an observation on pearl cultivation farm. There the delegation witnessed a woman planting a seed on an oyster so that in time it will form into a pearl. The place was also a souvenir shop for the cultured pearls accessorized into bracelets, ring, earrings, and necklaces perfect for gifts.

  • Finally the group moved back to the hotel and prepared for the welcome reception by the Shima International Exchange Association. The host families were also invited to the occasion and the delegates wore their national costumes for the event and Mr. Nurhalim S. Carim gave his thank you speech in behave of the group.

Day 7 - Experience of Japanese traditional culture (visit women divers), Visit local companies (Houwa En - nursing home and Honda Cars)

Day 7 (2) - Welcome party hosted by Shima Int'l Exchange Association with the Mayor of Shima City

DAY 8 – Visit to Mie Historical Structures

  • The last day in Mie Prefecture. The group moved to Shima City Museum of History and Folklore which opened only last 2011. The newly built museum houses wide range of cultural assets, such as the collection of farm implements of olden days and old artefacts from the early period of Japan.

  • After the last stop in Shima City, which is the museum, the group moved to Ise City to visit one of the historical structures in Mie, the Grand Shrine of Ise or the Ise Jingu. The group experienced a stroll around the divine forest of Ise Jingu and witnessed the remarkable structures of the Japanese old temples.

  • The group also visited Okage Yokocho, a street in Oharaimachi-town adjacent to the inner shrine of Ise Jingu. The group enjoyed traditional Japanese food and merchandise which are sold in the long street of Okage Yokocho. After the brief stay in Ise, the group moved to Mie Kyogijyo to have the second Workshop and as well prepare for the Action Plan. By 7:30, the group moved back to the city of Nagoya to stay for a night before finally moving to Tokyo the next day.

Day 8 - The delegates visited the historical structures in Mie (Shima Museum, Ise Jingu, and Okage Yokocho). After that they headed for Worskshop II

DAY 9 – Presentation of Action Plan

  • The group had a brief walk from the hotel to Nagoya Station and from the station, the group rode the Shinkansen Nozomi #118 bound for Tokyo. After having lunch in Tokyo, the group moved to Chiba City, Chiba for the Action Plan presentation where the 12 groups were reunited again to share the experiences and the thoughts they’ve gathered from their respective places during the past 4 days.

  • After the whole group finished their presentations, the program finally ended with great success. Each group finally headed back to Hotel Nikko Narita to rest and be reunited with the other delegates from their respective countries.

Day 9 - The delegates moved back to Tokyo and headed to Chiba for the Final Action Plan Presentation together with all other delegates from other group

DAY 10 – Departure and arrival in Philippines

  • The Philippine delegates were the first one to leave for Narita International Airport and back to the Philippines. The delegates bid farewell to their coordinators as well as their fellow ASEAN delegates whom they formed beautiful friendship with. Though there are tears in their eyes, their smiles tell each other “Goodbyes are not forever. They simply mean I’ll miss you, until we meet again!”

  • Each of the delegates from the 10 countries maybe divided by different culture, but JENESYS 2.0 brought them together as one. They may go to their own respective tomorrows, but the goals they’ve formed for the future of each nation will be bonded again someday, somehow.

Narita Airpot back to Philippines

Click for a better view

Photo credits taken from various participants. To know more about the program and how to participate you can visit JICE and NYC website.

All Rights Reserved 2013.

Posted on November 19, 2013, in Life's Like That, Travel and Leisure and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. whew………….grabeh ma’am irene! otaku ako ngunit hindi pa ako nakapunta sa Japan! xD
    You rock


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