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Tokyo, Japan

Press Release April 14, 2000

The Board of Trustees of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation and the Board of Committees of the Pacific Island Nations Fund have approved the following ten projects for FY2000 (April 2000 - March 2001).


Category 1: Exchange projects that respect the values and cultural identity of each island society.

1. Exchange Media Personnel between the Pacific Island Region and Japan

First of a five-year project The Sasakawa Peace Foundation - 10,000,000 yen

With the aim of promoting mutual understanding and exchange between Japan and Pacific island countries, information exchange and transmission is strengthened by providing opportunities for media personnel in the Pacific Island region and Okinawa to increase their understanding of the problems confronting the respective island communities. A further purpose is promoting networking among media personnel in the islands.

2. Coconut College

First of a five-year project The Sasakawa Peace Foundation - 5,000,000 yen

The "Islands Forum" was held for three consecutive years starting in 1994 with the purpose of creating a network among academicians and activists involved with various Pacific island countries. Coconut College has started in 1997 with the purpose of using the personal network formed through that conference to promote understanding in Japan of the Pacific islands. A three-day opening seminar will be held in the Yaeyama Islands in Okinawa, an Occasional Seminar will be held in Tokyo, and virtual classes will be offered using the Web.

3. Regional History Project of the Council of Presidents of Pacific History and the Social Studies Teachers Association

First of a three-year project National University of Samoa (Samoa) - 3,600,000yen

The aim is to strengthen the network of the Pacific Union of Teachers of History and Social Sciences in order raise awareness of the importance of history in school education as a whole. At the same time, it intends to help teachers become better historians by improving their skills in developing teaching materials, writing theses, presenting papers, and studying documents.


Category 2: Micronesia-focused projects aimed at promoting regional harmony

4. Educational Support for Better Understanding of Japan in the Micronesian Region

Second of a three-year project

Association for Japanese Language Teaching (Japan) - 5,000,000 yen

Collaborate primarily with educational institutions in the Northern Mariana Islands to research and develop a system to support appropriate Japanese language education and an introduction to Japanese culture. This project intends to create a model for use by other Pacific islands.

5. Archaeological Training Programs in Emerging Micronesian Island Nations

First of a three-year project

University of Guam (USA) - 3,600,000yen

The aim is to recover a sense of cultural identity by excavating and restoring historic sites destroyed over the long period of colonialism. This effort is intended to contribute to sound economic development and independence. Research has until now been conducted by U.S., European, or Japanese archeologists. The project will collaborate with local museums and government organs to develop people among the local population who can conduct research and manage the sites.

6. PATS Staff Trainee Program

First of a three-year project Ponape Agriculture & Trade School (Federated States of Micronesia) - 1,800,000 yen

To enable graduates of the 35-year-old Ponape Agriculture and Trade School -- the only occupational training school in Micronesia -- to become leaders in the school. Special training will be provided graduates for two years following graduation to raise the skill-level of instructors and increase the number of locally born instructors.


Category 3: Projects that support education and training through the medium of distance education

7. Transcending Borders with Education Online

Second of a three-year project

Micronesia Seminar (Federated States of Micronesia) - 3,200,000 yen

To tackle the various problems confronting Micronesian society today, this project will study information sharing, and problem analysis and resolution by individuals and groups. Participants will participate in debates and discussions and advanced methods of research technology and document creation.

The project will make use of the Internet for project development to broaden participation in the seminars.

8. Training Program for Distance Education and Learning Technologies and Applications in the Pacific Islands

Third of a three-year project

University of Hawai‘i (U.S.A) - 5,400,000yen

The purpose of this training is to contribute to the development of efficient, effective distance-learning materials and a distance-learning system. Educators, communications business managers, and government-related persons are taught skills for gathering the newest information related to long distance learning.

9. Charting the Future Course of Distance Education in the Western Pacific

One-year project

University of Guam (U.S.A.) - 6,000,000yen

To cultivate human resources through distance learning, while promoting regional cooperation in the Western Pacific region, the project strengthens the network among distance-learning-related policy makers and concerned local persons in order to create concrete policy proposals and activity plans. It will also implement a training program for raising the skill levels of distance-learning development technicians.


Category 4: Projects to promote networking among NGOs and NPOs operating in the region and to form linkages among Pacific island nations and Asian countries

10. The 2nd General Assembly of the Pacific Youth Council

One-year project

Secretariat of the Pacific Community (New Caledonia) - 5,400,000yen

At the second General Meeting in the Republic of Palau around July 2000, the Pacific Youth Council (PYC) established in 1996 will undergo structural reform to energize the organization. PYC will invite related organizations to the General Meeting to strengthen its network with youth groups in and outside the region, supporting organizations, and international bodies.

For more information:

Rieko Hayakawa (Ms.) Program Officer The Sasakawa Pacific Island Nations Fund 3-12-12 Mita Minato-ku Tokyo, Japan 108

Tel. 81-3-3769-6359 Fax. 81-3-3769-2090 E-mail:  URL: 

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