Foreigners living in Japan currently make up nearly 2% of the population, and in recent years increasing numbers of them are becoming long-term or permanent residents. As the foreign portion of the population increases, the incidence of friction and problems between foreigners, coming from various linguistic and cultural backgrounds, and local Japanese communities is rising. The issue of accommodating foreign children in schools remains one of the major problems that has come up.

Quite a few children from foreign countries cannot keep up with or cope with classes due to their lack of proficiency in the Japanese language used in lessons or to being bullied because of their culture and customs, and end up isolated or even refuse to attend school. Hoping to contribute to a remedy for this situation, a group of our university’s students independently established a volunteer group to help such troubled children.

Through utilizing the knowledge of language, culture, and society that they have gained at the university, the volunteer group has been undertaking activities such as visiting an elementary school in Kawasaki City to provide learning assistance to the foreign children, and helping to improve communications between parents and the school.

In October 2004, the Multicultural Community Learning Support Center was established within the University to support these activities initiated by the students. In addition to providing financial support, we also promote training and research aimed at improving the quality of programs and development of human resources to meet the demands of our multilingual and multicultural society.

Our Educational Support Activity for Foreign Children Living in Japan was chosen as a 2004 Good Practice Support Program for Educational Needs by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.

Number of Foreign residents/Transition of Japan's population

Number of foreign children in Japan by their languages of daily use

Contact Information:

Multicultural Community Learning Support Center

Tokyo University of Foreign Studies
Center for Multilingual Multicultural Education and Research

Room.206, 3-11-1 Asahi-cho
Fuchu-shi, Tokyo 183-8534, Japan
TEL: 81-42-330-5428
FAX: 81-42-330-5456
Ext. 5428

Access Map