This past semester, since its inauguration in January, our Move & Connect team has met so many amazing people, and advanced in our vision and execution. We cannot wait for the first workshop we are organizing this June at University of Tokyo.
As Move & Connect makes itself known in greater Tokyo communities, particularly those of art and education, we feel so grateful to have received a Seed Grant. Thanks to the initial drive that the grant generated, we have been meeting amazing, unique people across Tokyo. Professors, artists, and art management companies, to name a few. With the help from Patricelli Center, we are on to our mission — creating a platform for people with various backgrounds to engage with culture and history through body movement and artistic expression.
Move & Connect’s first workshop, “Delicious Movement in Tokyo,” held on three Saturdays in June, seeks to (1) engage participants to explore their individuality through body movement, discussion and writing journals, and (2) facilitate team-building among participants to further engage with their own themes after the workshop. Below is a snapshot of what we, with our collaborator Eiko Otake, have accomplished thus far:
- Finalized dates and secured venue: Delicious Movement workshop takes place on three Saturdays in June (10th, 17th, & 24th) at University of Tokyo, Komaba campus
- Recruited participants: We received 75 applications for 20+ seats. We have selected the participants based on their potential contribution to the diversity of the group.
- Raised funding: Through ReadyFor, a Japanese crowdfunding platform, we successfully raised an additional $ 5,000 in funding. This will be used for the transportation fee for the members and our future activities. https://readyfor.jp/projects/liberalartsforall
- Finalized the syllabus and assignments with Eiko Otake
- Visibility: Two online magazine articles featured our workshop prior to the application’s deadline. Asahi Shimbun, Japan’s one of the major newspapers, plans to publish on our workshop in June. Japan Times, Japan’s most well known English newspaper, writes on Eiko Otake and our initiative in its June edition.
The recruitment process for the June workshop has come to close with a successful note. There are some important tasks to be finished for the next 3 months:
- Successful execution of the workshop at University of Tokyo in June
- Continuing relationship among participants onward: Participants, mostly working adults, decided to give away their 3 consecutive Saturdays for this workshop. We are dedicated to developing bonds and fostering collaboration among the participants, not only during the workshop, but also afterwards. However, we also believe it would be useful to plot a built-in mechanism to make it easy for the participants to connect with each other after the workshop. This still remains to be thought out.
- Building a website to archive our activities and recruit future members
- Making Liberal Arts for All initiative a sustainable business model: As a successor of our Move & Connect, we are planning to launch Liberal Arts for All, a non-profit organization that provides liberal arts education opportunities for people in Japan. We are planning to get in touch with education related foundations for an additional funding. In the future, we seek to make the initiative sustainable by charging participants for workshops, publishing books and journals, and collaborating with Boards of Education.
All in all, we are very much looking forward to an organic emergence of ideas, and we can’t wait to move and connect with participants!