History of Japan Asian Association & Asian Friendship Society (JAFS)

Kimihiko Murakami, the founder of JAFS (now the Executive Director) was studying in India in his early 20s. When he was traveling in the rural areas of southern region of Bangalore and his bodily fluids was depleted by the scorching sun, he met a farmer and was kindly given the water from a jar by the farmer. It was cold and delicious and cured the young Murakamiʼ s thirst.

After a few weeks, he found himself lying in the hospital in South India. He got typhoid fever. That “water” was dirty and pumped from the pond.

While he was lying in the bed, the Indian friends whom he met in the school visited him and talked about problems in the rural areas of India. He, then, realized the importance of the water and urged him to do something about it.

In 1970, he founded EPOS Club, predecessor of JAFS, then the earthquake hit West Bengal in India and saw the devastation. In the situation, he re-affirmed that the safe water has been the most important and needed. Eventually in 1979, he founded JAFS, and the history goes on.

Chronological table

Feb. 1972
Organized The Epos Club (Founded by Rev. K. Murakami)
Oct. 1979
The Epos Club is reorganized into Asian Friendship Society (Founded by Rev. K. Murakami)
May. 1980
The first well was constructed by JAFS in Ghogali Village, Nagpur, India.
Aug. 1981
The 1st workcamp was held in India, and has been continued now in several Asian countries.
Aug. 1984
The 1st Earth, Water and Green Summer School was held in Takada, Shingu-City, Wakayama Pref. and has been continued for 20 years as of 2003.
Oct. 1986
JAFS was awarded with “Regional Exchange Promoting Award” by The Japan Foundation.
Apr. 1988
JAFS has become the first corporation aggregate in Osaka Pref.
Apr. 1988
Mr. Sadao Shibatani (President, Hankyu Corporation) was elected as the first President of JAFS.
July. 1988
JAFS was awarded with Osaka Governors Award for our contribution and promotion in the international exchange programs.
Aug. 1989
JAFS has held the 1st Asian Afforestation Training program, and continued for 11 years as of 2000.
May. 1990
Mr. Katsumi Yokoi (President, Matsushita Refrigeration Inc.) was elected as the second President of JAFS
Oct. 1990
The 1st Asian International Network Seminar was held in Thailand and has continued for 14 years as of 2003.
Apr. 1994
JAFS began the Pandan Pipeline water supply project in Philippines and completed in April 1999.
Jan. 1995
JAFS made reconstructing support for the Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake.
July. 1996
JAFS held Kumano International forestry and cultural exchange conference.
Apr. 1999
JAFS has begun International Water & Green Day Campaign (also known as Green Scout).
June. 1999
The first International Green Scout Campaign was held in Bangkok, Thailand.
Sep. 1999
JAFS has celebrated the 20th Anniversary.
May. 2000
Mr. Toshiharu Shibata (President, Asahi Broadcasting Inc.) was elected as the third President of JAFS.
July. 2002
The first Korea-Japan International Cultural Exchange Seminar was held in Miyama, Kyoto.
Nov. 2002
JAFS Watershed Project has begun and has continued to today.
Mar. 2003
JAFS International Symposium on Water was held in Osaka.
Apr. 2005
JAFS joins the Japan Platform for Disaster Emergency Assistance. JAFS sent experts to Indonesia and Pakistan when they had earthquakes and dt tsunami.
May. 2005
JAFS undertakes a project in Japan-China Forestation Fund funded by the Japanese government
Dec. 2006
JAFS sent experts for Indonesia
Aug. 2007
The first Friendship Youth Summit was held in August in India and in December in Japan.
Nov. 2007
JAFS assisted in the relief work of Bangladesh at the time of the cyclone “Sidr.”
May. 2008
Preparing to assist Myanmar for the cyclone “Nargis” and China for the major earthquake in Sichuan.
Oct. 2009
The 30th Anniversary of JAFS
Nov. 2009
The First Asia Youth Summit
Apr. 2010
Mr. Hagio Senri becomes 4th President of JAFS
Oct-Mar. 2010
Indonesia Padan Earthquake Relief Activities
Oct-Mar. 2010
Philippines Typhoon “Ondoy” Relief Activities
Mar. 2011
Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan Relief Activities (Continue)
Apr. 2012
JAFS becomes Japanese Government Recognized association.
Aug. 2013
The 3rd Friendship Youth Summit was hold
Nov. 2013
Philippines Typhoon “Haiyan” Relief Activities
Nov. 2014
“Haiyan Concert” was hold in Manila, Philippines
Apr. 2015
Nepal Earthquake Relief Activities
Apr. 2016
Kumamoto Earthquake Relief Activities
Dec. 2016 Philippines Typhoon “Nock-ten” Relief Activities
Nov. 2017 JAFS Nepal office open
Oct. 2019
The 40th Anniversary of JAFS
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