I have pleasure in presenting the FSFA Chairperson’s report for 2005/2006. It has been a relatively quiet period in comparison to previous years. We are still getting over our wonderful journey to Japan in late June 2005. The memories are still fresh from that experience. In a few months we will be celebrating our 25th anniversary of the sister city relationship. I will speak more about this later.
Thank you to all those who have worked on the Executive this year. Margaret, Bev, Chris, Michael, Bill, Peter, Des, David and Yoshinori thanks for help and support this last year. We have some new found friends in Raymond, Nich, Sam and Megan who have attended meetings this year. We also said farewell to several with the Tuckers moving to Adelaide. Hopefully we will get some new blood on the Executive this coming year. I also thank the Frankston Council for its fantastic support of our work.
The following is a report on our various activities for the past year.
· Student Exchange
Sam Warrington was an outstanding Exchange Student for us in Susono during 2005. He grew substantially as a person and left a profound mark on the people of Susono. Well done Sam. He was a worthy recipient of the ECS scholarship this year.
We hosted 3 short term students from Susono spent 2 weeks Elizabeth Murdoch College. Thanks to the school and host families for looking after them.
We are currently hosting Fuyuko Sanada from Susono. She is attending Frankston High School. Thank you to Brenda and Alan Saunders for their work in here first 3 months here. Thanks also to Julie and Megan MacFarlane for hosting Fuyuko for past few months. Fuyuko is soon to move to the Warringtons.
Lachlan Hood is going to Susono in November to spend 3 months attending Susono High School. Lachlan attends Mount Erin Secondary College. We wish Lachlan well.
We are currently advertising for a student to go to Susono in 2007.
· Speech Contest
Unfortunately the Speech Contest was not held this year. Thanks to Des for his ongoing work on this activity.
· Assistant Language Teachers
Laura Wallis and Emma Clark Kennedy were locals who worked as Assistant Language Teachers in Susono this year. Unlike previous years and for whatever reason we have struggled this year to attract applicants to replace Laura and Emma. The positions are terrific opportunity for recent university graduates to spend time in Japan improving their language skills.
· Sea Festival
Despite the very hot conditions, we put on a terrific display at this years Sea Festival. Thanks to all those people who helped out over the weekend and to Australian Arrow for looking after everyone as hosts. Due to the heat, numbers were down quite a bit. Brenda and her team and the expats did calligraphy. The kite lady from Kites for Kids was there. We also had shiatsu and doll making
The Japanese Consul visited our display and was very impressed with the event. He recognised many of the photos we had displayed of Susono as he had spent some time in nearby Gotemba.
· Australian Arrow
In April this year I was privileged to attend and present a paper at the Yazaki stakeholder forum in Japan. The presentation was on our work in Frankston Community and the Building of Bridges between FSFA the Council and AAPL. Prior to going to Japan I also had the opportunity to visit Yazaki’s operation in Samoa. This trip is acknowledgement of the very close relationship we have with Australian Arrow and I believe they are very pleased with what the Association were trying to do.
David Bradshaw from AAPL advised that Yazaki had had their summer camp in July and it had been fantastic. They had had 16 kids who would have been mostly locals. They had gone to Tokyo and various places and it had gone very well, considering the age group. 2 groups of Yazaki staff children also visited Frankston and were entertained by Frankston High School.
· ASCA Conference
Michael Fuller and Bev Hannan attended last years ASCA conference hosted by the City of Latrobe. This years conference is in Devonport Tasmania. FSFA has submitted applications for 4 awards. They are Single Project, Cultural Exchange, Industry and Commerce and Overall Program.
· 25th Anniversary of our Sister City Relationship
Next Years Sea Festival weekend will include events to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Frankston Susono Sister City relationship. Events will include a celebration Dinner and function to be hosted by Australian Arrow/Yazaki. Dr Ohashi the Mayor of Susono has indicated that he would be coming and we expect a large delegation to accompany him. We have indications that a musical group of some sort will also be coming. I have had several meetings with Frankston Council on the organisation of events.
In December last year, Margaret and I attended a function at the Japanese Consul General’s home in Lansell Road Toorak to celebrate the Emperor’s birthday.
Bev Harris is building a new FSFA Website under the Frankston Council website. We look forward to seeing it up and operational.
We look forward to a great 12 months and would encourage everyone to get involved in the Association in some form.