Ashinaga USA participates in Sakura Matsuri — Washington, DC

April 11, 2017 — The annual Sakura Matsuri – Japanese Street Festival was held on Saturday, April 8, hosted by the Japan-America Society of Washington, DC. For the first time, Ashinaga USA participated as a cultural exhibitor at the nation’s largest one-day celebration of Japanese culture in the United States. Each year, thousands of people travel from all over the country and the world to Washington, DC to share their love of Japanese culture and traditions with the Festival attendees.

IMG_0254Ashinaga USA’s presence at the Festival was warmly received by hundreds of Festival-goers. As the focus of the Festival is Japanese culture, Ashinaga USA passed out free samples of signature Japanese tea from various regions in Japan. In doing so, we attracted hundreds of people to our booth, presenting a great opportunity to inform the public about Ashinaga and its activities in Japan, as well as the Ashinaga Africa Initiative (AAI). One of our AAI scholars — Angelique Uwabera, who is a rising junior at American University — volunteered with us during the Festival to help spread the word about Ashinaga.
IMG_0246Many people were extremely impressed by Ashinaga’s mission to contribute to the development of Africa through access to higher education abroad for its young leaders. Everyone was amazed by the scope of our activities, all thanks to individual donations from Ashinaga-san, and we received dozens of requests to volunteer, donate, or get involved in some way. Our hope is that our participation in the Festival will contribute to spreading awareness of Ashinaga in the US, and we look forward to being an active participant at the Sakura Matsuri in the future!