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News & Events: 2010

JWCU Visited South Korea
(November 2-5, 2010)
From November 2nd to 5th, members of JWCU visited South Korea to learn about lifelong education and youth support programs there. They visited three lifelong education center in Yongin-si, work experience center for youth in Seoul, regional children's center in Seodaemun-gu, as well as child and youth support programs by 13-18HAPPYZONE. PB030059.JPG
Their visit was a good opportunity for them to learn about differences, especially in support for youth. The big difference was that after-school centers in Japan primarily support children with working parents so that they can spend after-school hours in a safe and comfortable environment, while those in South Korea mainly support poor children.

JWCU would like to thank all the host organizations for their hospitality and making their visit very valuable.

The child care forum will be held from February 5th to 6th in Tokyo, and members from 13-18HAPPYZONE are going to attend the forum to talk about their activities and exchange opinions with members from JWCU about differences in supports for youth between Japan and South Korea. We are very excited about the opportunity, and we hope that the forum can be something that everyone can experience and learn a great deal from.

The 14th National Gathering of "Cooperation" 2010 in Shikoku
(November 26, 2010)
JWCU's 14th National Gathering of "Cooperation" 2010 was held in Takamatsu City, which is located in Shikoku region (western part of Japan) on November 13th and 14th. Nearly 1,300 joined the plenary session on the 1st day, and about 1,100 people came to the group sessions on the 2nd day, the biggest turnout ever, to discuss how citizens can create "the public" as well as the roles of associated work and cooperatives in this endeavor.
The Gathering also brought together a number of local people who are involved in cooperation in various ways. The Gathering was a starting point to build a network with these wonderful people.

Moreover, this Gathering was the first event certified by the National Executive Committee for the International Year of Co-operatives.

The 15th National Gathering will be held in 2012, the International Year of Co-operatives (IYC), and we are planning to celebrate the IYC at this Gathering as well.
The next ICA-AP regional assembly will also be held in Japan. So please come to Japan and join us for the next Gathering to celebrate the historic year of co-operatives!

JWCU Welcomed YWCA of Korea
(October 21, 2010)
A group of leaders from YWCA (Young Women Christian Association) of Korea visited Japan to learn about community businesses in various fields.

JWCU was fortunate to have them at one of its sites: Iki Iki Plaza, a senior center located in eastern Tokyo.

The delegates were particularly interested in how to cooperate with and involve community residents.
Therefore, after the tour of the Plaza, not only the Plaza director and JWCU vice president talked about JWCU's activities, but several volunteers (who are also service users) at the Plaza talked about their experiences.

Delegates were very enthusiastic and gave us interesting questions and insights.

JWCU would like to thank the delegates for visiting, and Mr. Chunsup Park for coordinating the visit.

We hope their visit was helpful for them to further develop their programs.

Launch of National Executive Committee for
the International Year of Co-operatives:
(August 4, 2010)
In preparation for the International Year of Co-operatives (IYC), the national executive committee was founded on August 4th, and a press conference was held on the same day.

The committee consists of about 100 people from cooperatives, academia and other related fields.

At the press conference, Mr. Katsuto Uchihashi, the committee chair, said,
"Co-operatives are both enterprises and movements. It is our challenge to keep a good balance between these two aspects and strengthen both of them. IYC is a wonderful opportunity for co-operatives, local communities and other non-profit organizations to promote a new path for economic development as the world faces contradictions and limitations of the market economy."

In the meantime, JWCU is also planning various events and activities for IYC, including the National Gathering of Co-operatives in 2012.
We will keep you posted on our activities!

JWCU Welcomed On Care Service from South Korea
(June 23, 2010)
From June 14th to 18th, a group of long-term care leaders from On Care Service (South Korea) visited Japan to learn about Japanese long-term care services and worker cooperatives.

On June 14th, the delegates visited JWCU head office, and JWCU's directors of community welfare and international relations gave an overview of JWCU and spoke about its activities in community welfare.

They listened to the presentations with enthusiasm and gave us a number of wonderful questions and feedback

The group visited our community welfare sites on 15th and a facility run by a for-profit organization on 16th.

JWCU would like to thank the delegates for visiting, and Mr. Han-sik Byun and Ms. Junko Kikkawa from the Hope Institute for coordinating the visit.

We look forward to further strengthening the partnership!

31st JWCU General Assembly:
Calling for the Immediate Approval of Worker Coop Law
(June 23, 2010)
JWCU's 31st general assembly was held on June 11th and 12th in Tokyo, with 552 members joining the event.

Although the Law on Associated Workers' Co-operatives was scheduled to be approved during this Diet session, the session closed without the passage of the law for various reasons.

Nonetheless, a number of Diet members and local politicians took their busy time to attend the assembly and gave us the warm support.
At the assembly, President NAGATO voiced his determination for the passage of the law as soon as possible and for enhancing our social roles in building a truly rich society.

JWCU would like to thank all the organizations and people who kindly sent warm messages for the general assembly and provide continuous support.

We will post the updates on our legislative movements on this web site, and hopefully we will be able to send you the great news about the passage of the law soon!

Growing Media Attention to Worker Co-ops and Associated Work in Japan
(February 10, 2010)
As our society faces economic difficulties, there is a growing media attention to worker co-ops and associated work.

TV exposures include the popular documentary and news programs like "Dawn of Gaia (aired on November 10, 2009)" and "Super Morning (aired on February 8, 2010)."
A growing number of newspapers at local and national levels also write about associated work. Most of the media introduce associated work as a new way of working.

It is hoped that this media attention will not only promote worker co-ops but also bring us forward in legislative efforts.

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