A Project on
“Inter-Regional Networking through the On-Site Education Program”
: Introduction of the activities of “the Service Learning Course” in 2013-14

The “Sociocultural Experience Exercises: Service Learning Course” is opened in Department of Sociocultural Studies for the first time in 2013-14. These activities were carried out as a part of the project “Inter-Regional Networking through the On-Site Education Program” which has developed from 2011-12 in Department of Sociocultural Studies, Faculty of Sociology by receiving “the Research and Educational Activities Reform Support Budget” of Toyo University.

“Sociocultural Experience Exercises” which exemplify the core policy of this department to focus on field experience, is founded as one of the elective courses toward second grade or more in the curriculum revision of 2012-13. When it was offered in 2013, the contents and policies of the class was established through the reference to the field activities promoted than before by the collaboration with several volunteer students and teachers of this department in the project “Inter-Regional Networking through the On-Site Education Program”.

Among them, the core activity of “Service Learning Course” is “SPIRIT: Study support Project for International children with Real Interaction at Toyo University” which has been carried out as an activity of “Department of Sociocultural Studies” hosted from 2009 when the project was founded. The annual report of SPIRIT was written separately in a manner previously because its activities has been established as a service learning activities which is independent of the newly opened class in addition that many of its members are different from the students of “Sociocultural Experience Exercises”. This report summarizes the activities of the first year in “socio-cultural experience exercises: service learning course”

1. The Purpose of this project

“Service Learning Course” aims to return part of the outcomes of learning in the classroom to our society through the practices of volunteer activities among the “Sociocultural Experience Exercises” as well as to prompt students to learn deeply in a manner of active learning through planning, organizing and carrying out the project-based volunteer activities

2. The outcome and the plan of the carrier-design course

In 2013-14, the service-learning course conducted the learning activities in order to launch a new volunteer project which is focused on the reconstruction from the earthquake disaster as below.

  1. ① Students acquired the basic knowledge concerning the challenges of volunteer works from the teachers and the practitioners.
  2. ② Students conducted the researches concerning tsunami affected areas by using Internet.
  3. ③ Students joined the volunteer work concerning the reconstruction from the tsunami disaster for three days in Iwate.
  4. ④ Students collected and listed up the documents and books concerning the disaster of the nuclear power plant in Fukushima.
  5. ⑤ Students acquired the basic knowledge concerning NGO from the teachers and practitioners.
  6. ⑥ Some students visited Fukushima in order to learn the actual situation of the damage by the nuclear power.

On the basis of what students have learned last year, students will launch a volunteer project for supporting children affecting the nuclear in Fukushima in cooperation with NGO APLA since 2014 as below.

  1. ① Students will conduct the fundraising events in order to purchase balangon bananas which are produced by the organic method in Philippine.
  2. ② Students will visit the kindergartens and nurseries which APLA continues to support in order to deliver the balangon bananas, give a lecture concerning how the banana producers export them and acquire the knowledge of the actual situation in Fukushima.