SPFUSA/USJETAA Partnership to Promote JET Alumni Engagement in U.S.-Japan Relations
This project aims to encourage American JET alumni in deepening and strengthening the U.S.-Japan alliance through soft diplomacy and educational activities that promote mutual understanding between the United States and Japan. Since 2016, SPFUSA and USJETAA have offered a competitive mini-grant program vis-à-vis the 19 JET Alumni Associations (JETAA) chapters and sub-chapters aimed at increasing their capacities to host meaningful and impactful programming that highlight the bilateral relationship in their local communities. In 2018, SPFUSA and USJETAA expanded their partnership to include programming that enabled JETAA chapter leaders and individual JET alumni to stay engaged and informed on current issues within U.S.-Japan relations.
Sasakawa USA Chapter Grant Program
This grant program supports JETAA chapters in hosting robust events that further U.S.-Japan relations at the grassroots level. All projects should have a clear focus on a particular aspect or issue of U.S.-Japan relations. Applicants should think critically about the application questions and elaborate as much as possible on how the event contributes to U.S.-Japan relations in their local community.
By receiving this grant and working with Sasakawa USA/USJETAA, JETAA chapters will be impact the U.S.-Japan relations at the local level, elevate their leadership role in their local U.S.-Japan community, and strengthen the JET alumni network in the United States. Our goal is to build the capacity of the chapters to have greater impact beyond the activities of this grant. The program also provides support and training for event planning so that chapters can take on more ambitious programs than they could without the grant. In addition, it provides JETAA chapters an opportunity to learn about how grant application processes work for those interested in applying for larger grants at other organizations in the future.
Please contact Bahia Simons-Lane at USJETAA office with questions or to discuss ideas at any time: 202.653.9800 or email@example.com.
2020 - 2021 Grantees
In the fifth year of the program, Sasakawa USA and USJETAA have awarded grants to three JETAA chapters. The selected JETAA chapters are:
JETAA DC - Mentorship Program
This five-month virtual mentorship program serves to bring the JET alumni community together by creating meaningful professional development relationships between recent returnees and mid-to-senior career professionals. This program is designed to provide mentees with the tools, resources, and networks that they can use to advance their careers in U.S.-Japan relations and to assist them during an uncertain job market. JETAADC hopes to support recent returnees and strengthen the U.S.-Japan pipeline by building upon a previous grant project that JETAADC held through the USJETAA/SPFUSA mini-grant program on “Maintaining the JET Momentum: The Post-Exchange Pipeline to Successful U.S.-Japan Leadership”.
JETAA Chicago will host a webinar series centered around the themes of identity, cultural understanding and leadership, as experienced by JET alumni and individuals with meaningful connections to Japan. The program will involve two webinars, scheduled for late January and February, respectively. For the first event on January 28th, speakers explored the hidden roots of the Japanese community in the Midwest and how we as JETs can continue to build meaningful U.S.-Japan relations. January 28 at 7 PM CT / 8 PM ET.
Mixed Multitudes: A Discussion about Identity in the US-Japan Community
Thursday, February 18th
7 PM - 8:45 PM CT / 8 PM - 9:45 PM ET
JETAA Southern California
Will hold an event focusing on the Little Tokyo area of Los Angeles. The event will bring together speakers from the Japanese American community to offer historical information about Little Tokyo and its significance to Los Angeles, while also addressing the effects of the COVID pandemic on the district. Save the Date - Feb 10, 2021 at 6 PM PT / 9 PM ET.
Kizuna: Connecting Little Tokyo's Past and Present
6:00pm - 7:30pm PT / 9 - 10:30 PM ET
Year 5: 2020-2019
In the fourth year of the program, Sasakawa USA and USJETAA awarded grants to four JETAA chapters.
- New England JET Alumni Association - One Bite at a Time (Report)
- JET Alumni Association of Washington, D.C. (JETAADC) - Maintaining the JET Momentum: The Post-Exchange Pipeline to Successful U.S.-Japan Leadership (REPORT)
- JET Alumni Association of Southeast (JETAASE) – Alabama Sub-Chapter - Opportunities to Strengthen Japan-Alabama Ties (REPORT)
Year 4: 2019-2020
In the fourth year of the program, Sasakawa USA and USJETAA awarded grants to three JETAA chapters. The selected JETAA chapters were:
- JET Alumni Association of Southeast – Alabama Sub-Chapter - Opportunities to Strengthen Japan-Alabama Ties (REPORT)
- JET Alumni Association of Washington, D.C. - Maintaining the JET Momentum: The Post-Exchange Pipeline to Successful U.S.-Japan Leadership (REPORT)
- New England JET Alumni Association - One Bite at a Time: Building Bridges Through Japanese Culinary Arts
Read the 2019-2020 grant report.
Year 3: 2018 – 2019
In the third year of the program, Sasakawa USA and USJETAA awarded grants to four JETAA chapters.
- JET Alumni Association of Florida - Career Development Workshop
- JET Alumni Association of Minnesota -Japan-Minnesota Grassroots Forum
- JET Alumni Association of New York - JETs at The Met
- New England JET Alumni Association - The Cultural Significance and History of Kimono
Year 2: 2017 – 2018
In the second year of the program, Sasakawa USA and USJETAA awarded six grants from five JETAA chapters.
- JET Alumni Association Heartland
- JET Alumni Association of New York
- JET Alumni Association Pacific Northwest
- JET Alumni Association Rocky Mountain
- JET Alumni Association of Texoma
Year 1: 2016 – 2017
In its inaugural year, Sasakawa USA and USJETAA awarded a total of eight grants to seven JETAA chapters.
- JET Alumni Association of Chicago
- JET Alumni Association of Florida
- JET Alumni Association of Minnesota
- JET Alumni Association of New York
- JET Alumni Association Pacific Northwest
- JET Alumni Association of Southern California
- JET Alumni Association of Washington, D.C.
Applications are now closed.
- All programs, including the post-event review meeting with USJETAA and Sasakawa USA, must be completed by February 15, 2021.
- Final reports are due one month from the post-event review meeting or no later than February 26, 2021.
Download the narrative application form and the budget template below, complete, and send to Bahia Simons-Lane at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have any questions, please let us know!
- Narrative Application: 2020-2021 Narrative Application
- Budget Template for Preliminary Budget: 2020-2021 Sample Budget
- Find the application, templates, event examples, and example documents in our template repository.
- Have questions? Check out the FAQ.
- Applicants must be a JETAA chapter or sub-chapter in the United States.
- The chapter president and the individual coordinating the grant project (if a different person than the chapter president) must be signed up as a member of USJETAA. If you are not a member you can sign up for a free membership here: https://usjetaa.org/membership/individual-membership/.
- Your chapter must be a member of USJETAA. Not signed up yet? It just takes a few minutes. Do it here: https://usjetaa.org/membership/chapter-membership/
- Must submit a completed application.
- Proposals must be for events that are AT LEAST 2 months away.
Successful grantees will do the bulk of the planning and execution of the events. However, USJETAA and Sasakawa USA will be available to guide JETAA chapters through the grant writing and execution processes as needed. The support will be customized to individual chapters’ needs and may include assistance such as: workshopping during the early planning stages of conceptualizing the event, brainstorming or requesting speakers, and providing limited logistical support. Grantees are expected to abide by the grant agreement, which includes: meeting with USJETAA/Sasakawa USA periodically, tracking the usage of the funding, participating in a post-event review meeting, acknowledging the grantors, and promoting the event via social media (to advertise the event and to recap the event once it’s finished).