Consulate Activities


KAKEHASHI Project - High School Delegation from Okinawa Visits Oahu

Under The KAKEHASHI Project, a Japanese youth exchange program, 17 high school students from Chinen High School and Naha International High School (Okinawa),  visited Oahu  from August 25-31, 2022. During the program, they toured various locations such as the capital district, Bishop Museum, and engaged in cultural exchange with local high school students. A summary of the main program is as follows:

On October 20, students visited the Consulate General of Japan, where Deputy Consul General Mikio Izawa welcomed them and gave a presentation on Japan-Hawaii relations and the role of the consulate. The students delivered presentations to introduce themselves, the Okinawan culture and the relations between Hawaii and Okinawa. Ms. Disa Hague, Hawaii Department of Education Complex Area Superintendent, Ms. Judy Nagasako, Education Specialist with the Hawaii Department of Education, Mr. Darin Pilialoha, Principal of Nanakuli High and Intermediate School, and Mr. David Jones, President of the Hawaii United Okinawa Association, participated as observers and encouraged the students. 


On October 24, students visited Sun Noodle, a local noodle manufacturing company. Mr. Hidehito Uki, CEO/President of Sun Noodle, talked about the history of the company, how he decided to leave Japan to start a business in Hawaii about 40 years ago, stories about producing an authentic home packaged Okinawan soba product in the US, and their contribution to the local community. The students also toured the factory and observed the production process of all types of noodles including ramen and saimin.


On the same day, the students visited Waipahu High School for a final session. The students delivered presentations to share their experiences about what they had learned through the project, including the cultural similarities between Okinawa and Hawaii, eco-friendly activities in Hawaii, and their action plans to be implemented after returning to Japan. Students expressed their wishes to be in touch with local students through social media and promote Okinawan culture and the attractiveness of Japan. After the session, students enjoyed playing games and activities with the Waipahu High School students.


In addition to the above program, students also visited Nānākuli High & Intermediate School, one of the participants in the KAKEHASHI Project. Students from Okinawa experienced the school life, and also participated in home visits to experience the daily life in the US. Students from Nānākuli High & Intermediate School will visit Okinawa in February 2023 and continue participating in exchanges with the students from Okinawa.

【About the Kakehashi Project】
In Japanese, Kakehashi means building bridges. The KAKEHASHI Project is a government-funded grassroots exchange program that brings groups of Americans to Japan for engaging, focused and customized experiences. The project identifies and selects groups of Americans ready to learn about Japan in ways that connect to their specific fields. Participant groups include students, local and national policy makers, business leaders, Congressional staffers, pop culture enthusiasts, athletes and many more. For more info:

The following social media accounts operated by JICE (Japan International Cooperation Center) and the Laurasian Institute, a U.S. non-profit organization, provide overview on the projects implemented through 2022-2023.
Facebook: Kakehashi Project 2022-23
Instagram: @kakehashi_2022