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What's New In LLL Japan?

Toshi Jolliffe
Heisdorf, Luxembourg
From: LEAVEN, Vol. 44, No. 2, 2008, p. 8

Contributing Editor's Note: what's new in your part of the LLL world? It can be inspiring to read what Leaders, Groups, and Areas are doing both on the other side of the globe and "next door" to us. Here is the latest news from LLL Japan. Won't you consider sharing experiences, stories, or accomplishments from your corner of the world?

Handmade Handbook

Increasing translations of LLLI resources is always one of LLL Japan's major goals. The more translated material that is available, the more mothers Leaders can reach. However, English and Japanese are totally different languages, and creating translated material can take a long time.

LLL Japan is happy to announce that, for the first time ever, chapter five of the Japanese LEADER'S HANDBOOK is now available after a three-year review of the translation. The Japanese edition of The LEADER'S HANDBOOK consists of chapters from the 1998 English edition and information from the 2003 English edition. LLL Japan has added to this chapter translations of application exercises, such as the Listening Exercise, Bias Exercise, and Mixing Causes Exercise. The translation of the section about Toddler Meetings from the 1998 English edition was also published with excerpts from the 2003 edition.

LLL Japan went about printing the new parts of the Japanese LEADER'S HANDBOOK in a very interesting way. A professional printing would have been very costly, so LLL Japan decided to do it themselves! One hot summer day in 2007, the Leaders of LLL Mino, Japan, and some of their children got together at a local self-copying shop and printed all the pages. After that, they put the pages together. It cost only 5.200 yen ($50 US) to produce 150 copies, which were sent free of charge to all the Japanese Leaders and Applicants. Leaders handled translation, reviewing, printing, binding, and shipment. LLL Japan is proud of our new handmade handbook.

LLL on the Radio

LLL Japan is regularly on a local radio program to talk about breastfeeding. We would like to explain about this unique way of offering support.

A friend of a member of LLL Senrichuo, Japan, works as a producer at a local radio station. She was looking for somebody who could offer interesting information on her program, which covers a wide range of subjects. She explained her plan to the LLL Group member, who suggested inviting an LLL Leader to talk about breastfeeding. The subject "breastfeeding" had not occurred to the radio producer, and she thought that it would attract some listeners!

The information about having a Leader on the radio was passed to Leader Mihoko Inoue, from LLL Senrichuo, who consulted LLL Mino Leaders. They could not possibly ignore this fantastic opportunity to talk about breastfeeding and advertise LLL to the public! A search started for a Leader who had the time, interest, and ability to do the job. They were delighted when Hitomi Akao, LLL Toyonaka, Japan, was willing and able. Hitomi has a great sense of humor, and Japanese Leaders value her skills in creating a happy atmosphere.

A professional female presenter was also on the program to talk with Hitomi and to read messages from listeners. If a mother sent a question to the program, Hitomi answered during the next broadcast. When Hitomi first heard that the program was to be on twice a month and to last for three months, it occurred to her that the Series Meetings' format might be suitable with some adaptation! Hitomi focused on one meeting theme at a time. She also invited a guest Leader to each program.

While I was visiting my family in Japan recently, Hitomi invited me to be the guest Leader of the day. Since she was going to introduce me as a Japanese Leader in Luxembourg, Europe, I decided to talk about the LEAVEN article "The Official Breastfeeding Stamp" (LEAVEN, Feb-Mar 2006, page 13). I quickly translated it and took it to the studio with the original issue of LEAVEN.

The happy news is that the radio station decided to extend the program when the first series about LLL came to an end. The second series is now running, and one of the recent guest Leaders was Sami Tsuchida, LLL Sanda, Japan. She mentioned the support she received from all over the world after being involved in a terrible train crash in 2005. (See "Arigato: Thank you from Sami and LLL Japan," LEAVEN, Dec-Jan 2005-2006, page 133, and "The Power of Music," LEAVEN, Issue 1, 2008, page 14-15).

LLL Japan is grateful to Hitomi for the excellent way she has organized this radio program. Her unique contribution supports local breastfeeding mothers and effectively publicizes LLL to the community.

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