Japan Foundation HANDs! Exchange Programme for Young Asian Leaders

Japan Foundation HANDs! Exchange Programme for Young Asian Leaders

Deadline: July 31, 2015

The Japan Foundation Asia Center is now accepting applications for the Hope and Dreams (HANDs!) Project. HANDs! is a biannual exchange programme for young Asian leaders to learn best practices in tackling disaster education, preparedness and post-disaster recovery in order to apply them in their respective communities.

HANDs! aims to create broader access to disaster-related programmes for uninitiated but concerned members of society, as well as transform disaster education into an enjoyable and memorable experience for the younger generation. To this end, HANDs! focuses on solutions that utilise the creative arts, such as animation, architecture, dance, drama, design, film, fashion, literature, music and the visual arts.

Successful applicants will have the opportunity to join study tours in Indonesia and Philippines (5–15 October 2015) as well as Thailand and Japan (February 2016) to observe past and ongoing creative efforts by local organisations. At the end of the study tours, participants will develop project proposals for review by the Japan Foundation Asia Center. If approved, they will be given seed funding to implement the plans.


First year

  • Study trip #1: 10 days in Indonesia and Philippines (5–15 October, 2015)
  • Study trip #2: 10 days in Thailand and Japan (February 2016)

Second year

  • Build a network of contacts pertinent to disaster education-related issues.
  • Propose a new disaster education-related project to the Japan Foundation Asia Center.


Applicants must fulfill ALL of the following criteria.

  • Applicants must be a young professional (social worker, journalist, creative worker, etc.) with at least one year of work experience
  • Applicants must come from Japan, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia and India
  • Applicants must have a interest or experience in performing community engagement in such fields as disaster education, preparedness and post-disaster recovery. Individuals who have worked on other social issues are also encouraged to apply.
  • Applicants must be eager to learn from other countries’ experiences with regards to disaster education, preparedness and post-disaster recovery.
  • Applicants must understand and agree to the aims of HANDs!.
  • Applicants must be aged 35 years and below at the time of application (31 July 2015).
  • Applicants must have fair English proficiency and good communication skills.
  • Applicants must be able to commit to the full length of the programme.
    • 5–15 October, 2015
    • February 2016 (date TBC)
  • Applicants must be in good physical and mental shape.

How to Apply

  • HANDs! Download and complete the application form
  • Prepare the following:
    • CV in English (must not exceed 5 pages)
    • Two work samples, e.g. short essays, news articles, journal articles, poster designs, illustrative works, photo essays, videos, etc.
  • Attach the documents to an email and send it to press [at] jfkl.org.my with the subject header “HANDs!/Applicant’s Name”, by 4.30 p.m. on Friday, 31 July, 2015.

All documents should not exceed 5mb. Should any exceed this file size, please upload them to the relevant hosting website (e.g. Youtube for videos, Behance for illustrations) and send us the link.

For more information, visit HANDs! Exchange Programme.