Atsumi Foundation Get-Together for Fiscal Year 2009

There was an AISF Get-together for FY 2009 last November 6, 2009. AISF holds a get-together in the Fall of every year, where a guest speaker is invited to give a talk. This year's talk was given by Mr. James Masaakira Kondo who is the Representative Director of a certified NGO called "Table for Two."

Table for Two is a program which seeks to simultaneously solve the problems of over eating in Japan and the scarcity of food in developing countries. For every purchase of specified healthy meals and dishes in Japan, 20 yen goes through Table for Two for funding school meals for children in developing countries. The specified meals and dishes in Japan are part of the meals and dishes sold in many outlets such as company cafeterias, which have joined Table for Two, cafes, online retailers, and convenience stores. Such meals and dishes have low calories and healthy since they make possible meals that are nutritiously balanced. By consuming such foods, the Japanese consumer could prevent obesity and the metabolic syndrome. On the other hand, as mentioned above, 20 yen of the price of each meal or dish is remitted to various developing countries by the office of Table for Two, and becomes one school meal of the children. As a result, developing country children, who are not getting enough nutrition, are able to get more healthy meals. At present, the developing countries that are handled by the program are Uganda, Rwanda, and Malawi in Africa. As such, Table for Two makes possible a scheme wherein both Japanese and children in developing countries have healthy meals and at the same time become healthy.

The talk was very impressive. I often watch TV programs about life of people in developing countries of Africa. There are cases where you see the local people without sufficient food and leading extremely difficult lives. It is very much conceivable given the harsh climate, lack of water, and deterioration of peace and order that even though governments seriously try their best to solve the food problem, they are unable to do so. Consequently, in solving this problem, the support of developed countries is at times indispensable. In this sense, the activities of Table for Two, which secure more healthy food for children of developing countries while planning for the health of a developed country such as Japan, deserves attention. I hope for Table for Two's continued progress.

After the talk, guests mingled over a buffet dinner. The Atsumi Foundation's activities are always fun. As always, very delicious food and drinks were prepared. I was able to talk with various participants in the get-together, and had a very satisfying time. I would like to express my deep gratitude to AISF for holding the AISF Get-Together for FY 2009.

By Shermatov Ulugbek, translated by M. Maquito

Photos by Tanihara