International Cooperation Station 2014 – 国際協力ステーション2014年

International Cooperation Station 2014 – 国際協力ステーション2014
Intercultural Communication Workshop by the CIRs of Kyoto Prefecture

Alice from KPIC here.
On September 13th and 14th, the International Cooperation Station was held on the 2nd and 9th floor of Kyoto Station.

Goods on sale グッズの販売

Goods on sale

The 14th edition of this event was held during a beautiful autumn weekend in September at Kyoto station. Shedding light on social contribution activities at an international level with a focus on international cooperation, we choose to broaden the event to multiculturalism this year, with one organization representing Japanese language classes’ network in Kyoto Prefecture, and another one active in the field of supporting non-Japanese mothers in Japan among others. In total we had 19 organizations participating in this event.

On the 2nd floor, booths with picture and panel exhibitions were set up and local craft goods were on sale in an open space.

On the 9th floor at the Center, we had various activities going on: café corner with fair trade drinks, craft workshops where one could make foreign accessories and toys, an international cooperation consultation corner with specialists, as well as lectures on a broad range of topics.

Station 149月の秋晴れの中、京都駅ビルで、国際的な分野の社会貢献活動のイベントを開催しました。


On the 14th, I organized an intercultural communication workshop called “Barnga” with 3 other Kyoto CIRs: Brian (Kizugawa), Jake (Seika) and Eric (Kameoka).

Station 14In this workshop, participants experience the shock of realizing that despite many similarities, people of differing cultures perceive things differently or play by different rules. They learn that they must understand and reconcile these differences if they want to function effectively in a cross-cultural group.


After the workshop we had a debriefing with everyone, and then had participants discuss into groups what they learned from the workshop and the talk afterwards. They then presented what they will be paying attention to and working for when dealing with different cultures (be it foreign cultures or different values shared by people of the same Japanese culture).


Station 14I love this workshop because anybody can participate and gain something from it.
For people who have usually no interaction with foreign cultures, they can gain their first insight into multicultural society and communication, and use that knowledge when interacting with other people sharing the same culture and nationality but with different values.

For people having lived abroad or used to deal with foreign cultures, it allows them to become aware of their unconscious feelings and natural reactions when confronted to cultural clashes, because of the casual nature of the workshop (game) removing cultural and moral barriers and enabling people to be their real self.


Station 14異文化と触れ合う機会の少ない人の場合、異文化社会とそこにおけるコミュニケーションを初めて体験でき、同じ文化と国籍なのに違う価値観を持つ日本人と触れ合う時にもこの知識を活かすことができます。


People were thrilled at the end and some even wanted to hold this workshop at their workplace. I will try to hold it again!


From Brian, the CIR in Kizugawa – ブライアン(木津川市の国際交流員)から:

With Barnga, we had our participants experience the many emotions that come with language and cultural barrier. Being the first time for me to participant in a game type event, I was worried at first whether it would resonate with the participants. However, I was more than happy to see participants actively sharing their feelings throughout the game and hear the rules of intercultural communication they came up with after experiencing Barnga. It was a great success!


From Jake, the CIR in Seika - ジェーク(精華町の国際交流員)から:

Station 14Barnga was a lot of fun! I was a bit surprised, but every table seemed to have their own way of solving problems, almost like a real country. For example, one table followed the rules of the eldest person, no matter what. Another table mixed the rules of the remaining players and the new players in order to continue playing. There were a lot of different reactions so it turned out really well. I got to talk with some of the participants afterwards and it seemed like everyone really got a good grasp of what multiculturalism. Even though I was staff, it was a valuable lesson for me as well.



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