A volunteer-run chapter of Room to Read


About Us

About Us Volunteer

Join us in Japan to raise awareness and funds for Room to Read.  Our chapter relies on individuals who believe that World Change Starts with Educated Children. We host an annual gala and various other events to promote Room to Read's mission. We also aim to elevate the importance of literacy and girls' education by partnering with various international schools in the region.

Join us here and on our Room to Read - Japan Global Facebook page for English-speaking resources.  Our Japanese website is also available here.

Morning of Education and Inspiration with Room to Read Global Project Director

December 6, 2019

We had a morning of education and inspiration with Room to Read Global Project Leader, Joel Bacha at a long-time supporter’s beautiful condo function room on Thursday, 21st of November.


Joel mentioned in his presentation how Room to Read (RtoR) has changed over the past 10 years and how it’s evolving. The quality of RtoR’s work keeps becoming more impactful, RtoR continues to reach more and more children and inspire more and more people to join RtoR in this important endeavor. 

In 2014, 8.5 million children were being supported, in 2019 today, the number has more than doubled to 18.7 million. In the new strategic plan, “Vision 2025”, the goal is to reach a minimum of 40 million children. RtoR plans to scale its programs by working more actively with governments, other organizations, and publishers to reach more writers and illustrators to develop more meaningful books for children. 

It was interesting to learn how RtoR improves its programs through data analysis, research, monitoring, and evaluation and how efficient launching programs have become through “Room to Read Accelerator”, which is a process that takes successful models of the past and packages them in such a way that it could be adapted to each country’s context and shared with governments and other organizations.

It was exciting to hear about the application of an online platform for teachers, writers, illustrators, publishers with teacher training materials in Indonesia. More developments in technology are yet to come.


Towards the end of the meeting, RtoR supporters presented their own school visit experiences. 


We had some time for discussion with plenty of coffee and refreshments and many meaningful questions were raised. 


We hope Joel can visit us again in Tokyo!

Site visit info session at Nishimachi International School

October 8, 2019

During Spring Break 2020, Room to Read is offering Nishimachi International School (NIS) parents and children an opportunity to visit a school in Siem Reap that was supported by Room to Read.

An information session was hosted by Room to Read supporters at the NIS library on Monday, 7th of October.


Background history of the school in Siem Reap and introduction to the site visit were presented and discussed.


Slide presentation of a previous family visit to the same school in Siem Reap.



The school is located via a 2-hour bus ride from the center of Siem Reap. This is a chance to see first hand how a successful school in Cambodia operates, lessons that the children have, and hear about student life there.

For more information, please contact japan@roomtoread.org

Tokyo Girl Scout Troop Raises over ¥152,300 ($1,400) for Room to Read!

June 25, 2019

TOKYO I sat down earlier this week with Nishimachi International School’s Girl Scout Troop (Troop #10), to discuss the troop’s recent success with their fundraising project for Room to Read/Room to Read’s students.  Troop #10 raised ¥152,300 (roughly $1,400) over the span of a few days of bake and book sales held at Nishimachi International School.  

 Around two months ago, in late March, the troop and I had spent some time together learning about the Room to Read organization, where it got its start and how it has impacted the lives of millions of children worldwide.  The girls were challenged with the easy-to-be-fooled-by “Do Not Read This” campaign video, discussed the importance of education, and went through the components of Room to Read’s Girls’ Education Program.  Following this meeting, Troop #10 was given the opportunity to talk with and ask questions of Room to Read’s Girls’ Education Program alumna, Hawa Khatun, as a part of a series of school visits Ms. Khatun was giving during her stay in Tokyo for Room to Read Japan’s annual fundraising gala.  

The girls had taken their meeting time that day to learn about the support Room to Read provides other students, particularly young girls like themselves, in the developing world.  The ‘Do Not Read This’ video struck a particular chord with the girls of Troop #10.  When asked what she thought about the work Room to Read does, Ava answered, “I wanted to support Room to Read because I didn’t like [hearing] that there are some kids who can’t learn to read at all”.  

In thinking to the pillars of Room to Read’s Girls’ Education Program and its mission for early-life intervention and child-marriage prevention, Ema explained that “[when] you think of it, you wouldn’t want to marry somebody at my age, you’d want to live freely until you decide what you want to do.”  Riahnna explained why she too wanted to do this project.  “When I think about what other countries and other people who don’t have what we have, it makes me want to do something.  I just thought that we should not take the education and opportunities we have for granted.  I feel honored to do this because I really felt like even if I [can’t] meet the children…I feel like I am really helping [them].” 

 Motivated by the desire to help their fellow students and contribute what they could to the organization, Troop #10 put their creative and entrepreneurial heads together and pulled off a very successful bake and book sale.  Their efforts not only provided a significant contribution to Room to Read but also was a means to educate their classmates about the inequities for girls’ education in developing areas and to spread the word about the valuable impact that Room to Read has had and continues to have on girls worldwide.

This fundraiser was done as an effort towards earning the Girl Scout Bronze Award, an award given to girl scouts who work together to inspire and impact their Girl Scout or local community.  The Girl Scout Juniors made baked goods and put together treats for their fellow classmates to buy throughout the school day.  Troop #10 also sorted through books they were no longer using at home and brought those to sell alongside their macarons and Rice Krispy treats.  With everything at ¥100 to ¥200 a pop, the girls were able to raise over ¥150,000 (over $1,300) for Room to Read.  Nishimachi International School’s librarians also had a hand in helping the Girl Scouts run a successful bake-and-book sale.  They sorted through older books the library no longer needed and contributed those to the bake-and-book sale’s profits.     

 When asked about what they learned from the fundraising process, Ava mentioned that “sometimes you really want to [achieve a goal], but your parents don’t really want to bake all the stuff so you only get to do 3 or 4 sheets of [baked goods].”  Others, like Anna, learned about the difference in the value of ¥100, depending on the country you’re in.  “Coming from a place like here,” Anna reflected, “I’m able to get a private education and live in all of these countries…so I haven’t actually thought of how much something might be worth to someone else.  With this project, I realized how much something would’ve been worth to somebody else in another country, and how much I have as an opportunity to be here right now.”

The girls ended the interview with book recommendations and words of encouragement they wished to share with fellow Room to Read students.  From Dr. Seuss to non-fiction animal books to Percy Jackson to books about the world’s countries, the girls wanted to share books that make their readers laugh and learn, and push the boundaries of their imaginations.  Should they have the chance to meet the students whose lives they’re impacting, the Girl Scouts wished to leave them with the following:

“Just know that you’re not alone.  There are people supporting you so you don’t have to be afraid of anything.  And just know that whatever you’re doing, keep it up because you’re not doing anything wrong.” – Miyuki 


“Education is something important in your life.  I hope you have fun learning and don’t let anyone limit you to what you have right now.” – Manami 


“Not everyone can read or write, but then with some help from other people, you can easily learn how to read and write.  And hopefully, you can also help other people learn.” – Julie 


“I would say please take this opportunity because you’ll miss out on a lot if you don't learn.  It’s hard to read and know directions if you can’t read or write.” – Ava 


“Read.  Even if you find a book that’s muddy or torn, read it.  Every book has its own soul.  It has its own feelings.  Treat your books carefully, treat them fairly.” – Emma 


“This is a quote I found, it said that people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who can.” – Ema 


“I don’t feel like I need to tell them something really long and complex, because we’re probably the same age and I want to say something that seems fun and lighthearted.  Starting with something simple would be the best way to go.  I think just starting with ‘hi’ would be the best.” – Anna 


“I’d say something short and summed up to make them feel like I was actually there.  I would introduce myself and get to know them better.” – Riahnna 




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If you are looking for our Japanese page, visit us here: http://japan.roomtoread.org/

Thanks to the dedication and work of the Japan chapter.

186,659 children and their communities benefited

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