May 30, 2019

Introducing Japanese Culture to Foreign Technical Interns

On May 12, the Kesennuma Shishiori Processing Cooperative Association, supported by Sumitomo Corporation and Sumitomo Corporation Tohoku, held an event introducing Japanese culture, which was attended by 25 female technical interns from Indonesia working at companies in the city of Kesennuma.

Sumitomo Corporation employees put on demonstrations of kimono dressing and the tea ceremony, and offered advice on etiquette. Employees, who are able to converse in Indonesian, also took part as volunteers to facilitate exchange. A participating employee commented “the interns were happy with putting on the long-sleeved furisode kimonos and that made me want to further improve my kimono-dressing skills.” Other commented “the interns enjoyed writing their names in kanji characters. There are many different ways to interact with foreigners.” The interns seemed to enjoy themselves picking out kimonos, and gained a better understanding of Japanese culture while getting to experience the tea ceremony and origami.

To help in the recovery of the marine product processing industry, a key industry for Kesennuma (Miyagi Prefecture) that has suffered tremendous earthquake and tsunami damage, Sumitomo Corporation and Sumitomo Corporation Tohoku have teamed up with Mitsui & Co. We form a coalition of trading companies to pursue efforts alongside the governments of Miyagi Prefecture and Kesennuma City as well as local chambers of commerce and industry and other interested parties. This coalition of trading companies is assisting the Kesennuma Shishiori Processing Cooperative Association, established by an alliance of local business owners following the disasters, to develop business models for joint business activities.

The number of foreign technical interns at local marine product processing facilities is increasing year by year, and Sumitomo Corporation is committed to supporting future exchange between locals and foreign technical interns.

In front of the office building donated by our Company and Mitsui & Co.
Interns enjoying the ritual of the tea ceremony and the aroma of tea
Creating their very first origami cranes
An intern canning local specialties from the early morning hours