2018 OISCA International Board of Directors Meeting held in Tokyo
The OISCA International Board of Directors Meeting 2018 was held on October 11 and 12 at the International Conference Room of the National Olympics Memorial Youth Center in Yoyogi, Tokyo. This year, a total of 73 delegates, representatives and observers from the 15 countries and areas including Japan participated in the meeting.
After declaring the meeting open, Mr. Yasuaki Nagaishi, Secretary General of OISCA International who acted as the Chairman, led a prayer for the souls of the recent earthquake victims in Lombok and Sulawesi, Indonesia, the flood victims in Kerala, India and also the victims of the various disasters in Japan and elsewhere.
Dr. N. Krishnakumar IFS, President of OISCA Tamil Nadu State Chapter, India and Mayor Jett C. Rojas, President of OISCA Philippines, were selected as the Co-Chairmen of the meeting.
On behalf of Dr. Yoshiko Nakano, President of OISCA International, who was not present in the meeting due to her health condition, Mr. Toshihiro Nakano, Executive Vice-President, read the President’s statement. It emphasized once again the OISCA fundamental principle: “Attachment to the Soil” and appealed for further promoting sustainable agriculture and close partnership among the OISCANs in order to attain SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals). In connection with the strengthening of partnership, the statement specifically mentioned that in South India, one passionate person started OISCA movement in a modest way in a small town and it has now expanded to more than 5,000 members. In Mexico, one person is enthusiastically continuing his efforts to promote OISCA concept and activities in Central America.
Afterwards, Mr. Nagaishi, presented a comprehensive review of OISCA’s activities over the past year. Centering on the four pillars of the activities: Capacity Building, Rural Development, Environment Conservation, and Children’s Forest Program (CFP), he reported the major achievements and also introduced such special events as the MARA-OISCA International Business Forum held in November 2017 in Sabah, Malaysia, the Annual General Meeting of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) held in Manila, Philippines in which the OISCA representatives made presentations, and the “Global Youth Forum” organized by OISCA South India in Kerala India in February 2018.
Commenting on the review report, Prof. Ryokichi Hirono, Council Member of OISCA stressed that although OISCA has been carrying out many significant activities across the globe, its efforts are not necessarily well known or recognized by outside people and OISCA has to conduct more vigorous PR campaign. He suggested OISCA should be involved more actively in multilateral and bilateral meetings and forums held in Japan. A female Youth Member of South India proposed holding the Global Youth Forum regularly and urged the participation of more youths, female representatives and students from many member countries and areas.
Then a report on the results of the OISCA International Finance Meeting was delivered by its Chairman Datuk Ibrahim Bin Ahmad of Malaysia. He pointed out a need to strengthen the financial position of OISCA by increasing the number of the committee members and organizing business programs on the basis of OISCA platform. In this year’s Board Meeting, a total of 16 new domestic chapters, all from India, and also new International Board of Directors for next term were unanimously approved.
Following coffee break, the participants listened to two reports, one on the result of the MARA-OISCA International Business Forum held on November 13-16 in Sabah, East Malaysia. The reporter, Mr. Zahari Bin Aziz, Secretary General of OISCA Malaysia, stated that the event with the participation of 600 Malaysian and 65 Japanese business persons achieved a big success. Concerning the Business Forum, an Indian delegate raised a question if it is carried out 100% in line with the OISCA philosophy.
Two Youth Members of OISCA South India presented a report on the result of the Global Youth Forum held on February 9-11, 2018 in Kochi, India. It was attended by 280 national and international delegates. The delegates discussed among other things, FURUSATO, water, and technologies for combating pollution. Commenting on the report, a couple of participants pointed out a need to encourage more active participation of young delegates from other national chapters so as to create a positive impact and to widely disseminate ideas to a larger audience worldwide.
After lunch break, the participants conducted follow up and review of the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). At the outset of this session, Prof. Ryokichi Hirono, OISCA Council Member, reported on the recent trends of SDGs. Then, the representatives of the national chapters presented respective presentations on the main themes of Food, Education and Community.
On the second day of the Board Meeting, the participants were divided into three groups. In the group “P”: Partnership, Self-Sustainability and Ownership for sustainable co-existence and prosperity, the participants discussed how to strengthen fund’ financial resources for taking actions. In the group “E”: Sustainable Prosperity of the Ecosystem in Mother Earth, the discussants mentioned specific projects and activities carried out in the various countries and areas. In the Group “C”, the representatives took up the main theme: Cultural and spiritual advancement by sustainable co-existence.
Following the group discussions, Ms. Etsuko Nakano, Vice-President of OISCA International, delivered a message expressing her appreciation to all the participants for attending the meeting. She stated that SDGs have been OISCA’s goals since its foundation and urged the OISCANs to work hard for attaining these goals.
Mayor Jett C. Rojas, President of OISCA Philippines was presented a Citation in recognition of his outstanding efforts for promoting the OISCA movement in the Philippines.
In the general review of the two-day sessions, the chairman summarized the achievements and challenges identified. It was pointed out that Corporate Funds for CSR must be actively mobilized to support OISCA activities all across the national chapters. Women must have more presence in OISCA national chapters and International Board.
Dr. N. Khrishnakumar, President of OISCA Tamilnadu State Chapter, proposed that Global Youth Forum be held in Chennai, India in 2019. It was approved by the Board. Mr. Toshihiro Nakano, Executive Vice-President, made closing remarks. He mentioned that OISCA Japan is currently making preparations for the 60th anniversary of OISCA in 2021.
On the third day, there was an optional field tour to Yamanashi Prefecture. 30 delegates from 10 countries and areas participated in the group tour. The tour group was welcomed by OISCA Yamanashi Chapter led by Mr. Shingo Kanemaru, Chairman, and relevant officials of the Yamanashi Prefectural Government Forestry Department. The group observed the site of Mt. Fuji Reforestation Project being carried out since 2007 by OISCA in collaboration with private corporations and public sector including Yamanashi Prefectural Government. Besides the project site on Mt. Fuji, the participants visited the Fujisan World Heritage Center and Sengen Jinja, the traditional Shinto Shrine.