Six children of emigrants learning Okinawan language and Ryukyuan dance in Kin Town
August 7, 2014 Ryukyu Shimpo
The opening ceremony and pep rally of the “2014 Kin Emigrant Youth Trainee Friendship Project,” which hosts children of Kin-born emigrants for a cultural training program, took place at Kin town hall on August 1. Six trainees from five countries will stay in Okinawa until mid-November, learning Japanese language, Ryukyuan dance, sanshin, and other aspects of Okinawan culture.
The project began in 1996, and this is the 19th iteration. To date, 62 people have been accepted.
The six trainees in the 2014 batch are Bolivian Airi Kikuyama, 20; Argentine Kaori Yonagi, 19; Brazilian Higa de Almeida Carmen Tiyoko, 22; Peruvian Shinzato Yge Aldo Hideharu, 20; American Gagola Sarah Ann Miki, 21; and American Ige Christopher Kiki Jordan, 23.
Higa expressed her determination, to get the most out of the program saying, “Haitai. I am very happy to have come to Kin. I want to learn a lot of culture here, so I can teach many things to my family and friends when I return to Brazil.”
Smiling, Yonashiro said, “I learned Ryukyuan dance and sanshin when I was a child. I especially want to learn dance.”
Kin Mayor Hajime Nakama said, “In many countries the transition to the 3rd and 4th generations is continuing, and through this project we would like to continue the connection Kin has with these countries. I look forward to all the trainees becoming cultural bridges when they return to their home countries.”
(English translation by T&CT and Lima Tokumori)
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