SEISA Africa Asia Bridge (SAAB), which was first held in 2015, marks its 9th edition this year.
SAAB was born out of the strong desire of Honorary Chairman Yasuo Miyazawa, founder of SEISA Group, to build a “bridge (HASHI)” between Africa and Asia for the future of children.
Africa is now known as a continent with a great deal of natural resources and it can be said to be the center of the world that attracts the attention of many people as a base for ICT development. We are now approaching a very important time to think about how we should deal with this change and what kind of attitude we should take toward the world in the next 10 to 20 years. With the aim of realizing the goals of children “knowing” about and "connecting" with African countries, SAAB is an event where people from various countries discuss the beauty and potential of diversity in Africa, and sympathize with each other.
In recent years, the use of online video platform enables us to talk with people from more countries. We would also like to make SAAB as an opportunity to explore how Japanese can interact and connect with people overseas, and how we can act on the issues faced by various countries. We, SEISA, think "understanding each other, making friends instead of leaving someone out, and acting together" is the very important learning. We hope this experience will be a seed for young people in Japan and overseas, who will lead the next generation, to think and act for themselves.
“SAAB is for children to think about their future. We are planting seeds for the future!” We will inherit the thoughts of Honorary Chairman Yasuo Miyazawa and keep “seeding" for future children.
Message for the 1st SEISA Africa Asia Bridge（2015）
“Africa” is known to everybody. However, how far do we understand the real Africa? The image most people have as regards Africa may have something to do with lion, giraffe, elephant, etc. It is far away from us, physically and psychologically, and it is seldom that we feel it close to our daily life. In the reality, however, the continent has more than 20% of the total land space of the earth, and there are more than 3,000 different languages spoken. In addition, it is said to be the birthplace of the human being. Africa will surely become more significant continent for Japan in 10 years, 20 years or 30 years, because it is very rich in natural resources. It is no exaggeration to say that Africa may be the only region capable of supplying enough natural resources to cover Japan’s requirements. Therefore, it is very important for children who bear the future of Japan to learn about Africa and know its people, and do cultural exchanges with them by taking every opportunity.
It is true that Africa is far away in terms of distance, but in the near future the time may come when we can go to Africa in a few hours. Please think about how the transit time between Tokyo and Kyoto has changed from Edo-era, Meiji-era, Showa-era through today. Hence, it may not be unrealistic to reach Africa from Japan in 1-2 hours in the future. Physical distance will surely be shortened. In line with it, psychological distance should be shortened, too; Japan needs to be closer to Africa. Among Asian countries, Japan knows Africa better than others. Therefore, we should play a key role by strengthening relationship/friendship with Africa, making more efforts to establish the peace there and to assist them in further development as their good partner.
It would be greatly appreciated if you would help us nurturing children and youth who have closer hearts rather than physical distance in both Japan and Africa. Thank you.
Last year, we held the 8th SEISA Africa Asia Bridge 2022. Blessed with good weather, we held it face-to-face for the first time in two years. Besides, we live-streamed the event on seven channels simultaneously. Together with approximately 40,000 people from more than 31 countries, including 15 embassies in Africa and Asia, Japan, United Nations Development Programme (UDNP, New York), and Japanese Language School (Myanmar), we were able to expand the circle of learning and interaction. At the opening ceremony, we received the messages from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Raymond Gilpin, Chief Economist and Head of Strategy at Regional Bureau for Africa (UNDP), and Mr. Yuji Kuroiwa, governor of Kanagawa Prefecture. In order to put Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) into practice and broaden learning opportunities beyond Japan to the world, we will continue to promote collaborative programs with UNDP, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), and embassies in Africa and Asia.
We reassured that SEISA Africa Asia Bridge, which SEISA Group founder Yasuo Miyazawa named “Bridge = Kakehashi," will serve as a bridge of peace not only for Africa and Asia, but also for neighbors, friends, and everyone involved. We will continue to express our cherished philosophy of "KYOSEI" in various ways.
『sTED(SEISA Transnational Education Design)』 is a program for the students to think about the future after 10, 20 and 50 years from today and give their original presentations, based on the relationship between Africa and Asia and SDGs(Sustainable Development Goals). Students who belong to SEISA all over Japan and nearby elementary, middle and high school students also gather for giving passionate presentations.
To date, SEISA National Student Council has been involved in “Creating a KYOSEI Society”, which SEISA has been working on for nearly 50 years, and has been involved in activities to realize SDGs. On 2020, “SEISA CLEAN UP ACTION” was started by an alumnus of SEISA, a former member of the National Student Council and current executive member of the National Alumni Association, with a passionate wish to “continue thinking about the SDGs after graduation”. At SEISA Africa Asia Bridge 2020, members of student council across Japan and also in abroad connected online. They reported and discussed their activities such as the different ways of thinking about garbage collection in different countries and communities. Some students and graduates have a strong belief that through this SAAB and the SEISA Student Council, they will make SDGs-related activities and actions as their life’s work. We believe that this is a great achievement.
This award recognizes outstanding ESD-related projects implemented by institutions or organizations engaged in ESD activities within the framework of “Education for Sustainable Development: Towards the Realization of the SDGs (ESD for 2030)”, which was adopted at the 40th UNESCO General Conference and endorsed by the UN General Assembly in 2019, “SEISA Africa Asia Bridge” has been selected by MEXT as a representative of Japan.
Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) aims to equip learners with the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes necessary to act responsibly, respecting cultural diversity, protection of the environment, for economic sustainability, for a fair society for all genders, and for present and future generations. It will play a key role in the realization of all the SDGs.
State of Eritrea / United Republic of Tanzania / Republic of Madagascar / Republic of Ghana / Republic of Malawi / Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia / The Republic of the Sudan / Republic of Tunisia / Republic of Zambia / Republic of Botswana / Republic of South Africa / Kingdom of Lesotho / Republic of Namibia / Republic of Rwanda / Republic of Cote d'Ivoire
United States of America / Republic of the Union of Myanmar / New Zealand / Kingdom of Bhutan / People's Republic of China / People's Republic of Bangladesh / Japan / Republic of Korea / Kingdom of Thailand / Russian Federation / Republic of the Philippines / Republic of Benin / Burkina Faso / Lao People's Democratic Republic / Republic of Kenya / Taiwan
●United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) ●Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) ●Yokohama City International Bureau ●Ashibetsu City ●Japan-Africa Friendship Yokohama City Council Members’ League ●FUJIFILM Corporation ●Kiyoken Co., Ltd. ●Kurikindi Design Co., Ltd. ●Funobori Co., Ltd. ●Kataguruma LLC. ●SKLO Co., Ltd. ●HANDOFF Co., Ltd. ●SINKPIA・JAPAN Co., Ltd. ●Non-Profit Organization(NPO) Wave Yokohama
●Ministry of Foreign Affairs ●Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology ●Kanagawa Prefecture ●Odawara City ●Ashibetsu City ●Hakone Town ●Oiso Town ●Kanagawa Prefectural Board of Education ●Yokohama City International Bureau ●Yokohama City Board of Education ●Odawara City Board of Education ●Ashibetsu City Board of Education ●Japan International Cooperation Agency Yokohama Center ●Yokohama SDGs Design Center
●Kiyoken Co., Ltd. ●DA-KO-ON (NPO) ●Harukoro ●Mottainai Shokudo ●Hachiboshi Café ●u3doco ●FOFO CATERING SERVICE ●D＆S catering world ●Mika bánh mì ●café Le Havre. ●Korean food store
●General Incorporated Association SEISA Group ●Public Interest Incorporated Foundation Foundation for Global Children ●Kokusai Gakuen Education Institute ●SEISA Education Institute ●SEISA Africa Asia Bridge 2022 Executive Committee
●SEISA ECEC* KIDS planet Education Institute (*Certified Center for Early Childhood Education and Care) ●Social Welfare Corporation SEISA ●SEISA Gakuen
We connected SEISA's schools nationwide online and held "SAAB Simultaneous Class" to learn together, to know, and to connect about the progress of learning for SAAB. Students researched and learned about themes related to "Africa" and "Asia" (history, food, clothing, and housing, culture, climate, religion, geography, industry, etc.) at each school, and will give presentations on stage or on-demand on the day of SAAB. Students learned about African and Asian countries, where they felt far away until now, by listening to the presentations of their friends, and by researching, knowing, and learning on their own, which enabled students to feel the countries closer than ever.
On August 29th, 2019, 44 junior high and high school students who represented SEISA schools in / around Kanagawa Prefecture participated in TICAD Ⅶ（Tokyo International Conference on African Development）which is one of the biggest international conference held in Japan. In the section of “Driving Multi-Sectoral Partnerships for the SDGs”, a side-event organized by Kanagawa Prefecture and UNDP (United Nations Development Programme), the students seated in the first row in the center and they listened eagerly to the discussion using ear phones for simultaneous interpretation system. We saw in their attitude what they obtained in their long term study and experience in SAAB.
25 students from SEISA High School and SEISA Gakuen High Shool Hokuto Campus and two graduates visited UNDP (United Nations Development Programme) on October 18th, 2019, and had an opportunity to make presentations on their activities in SAAB and SDGs.
After a warm greeting from Ms. Eunice Kamwendo, Strategic Adviser to UNDP Africa, we were also able to listen to very precious stories from UN Ambassador Dr. Toshiya Hoshino and other UN specialists.
In addition, we received courteous responses to students' questions about the current state of Africa. It was a lifelong experience for students, and it was a great opportunity for them to find goals in their future. In addition, the students were invited to visit the UNDP again during their next year's program in New York.