What can we do to protect the environment?
This was the question posed to the students of the Nihongo Center Foundation (NCF) and the Philippine Institute of Japanese Language and Culture (PIJLC) in the 8th Kake Speech Contest, held last September 22 at the NCF Makati Campus. Eight students stepped up to the task and shared their ideas on what each individual can do to protect our natural environment.
Zoe-Agatha Serrano, this year’s first place winner, urged others to look no further than where they stand. Within their own worries and circumstance, people can find opportunities to contribute to society and to the world.
In Ms. Serrano’s speech, she recounted how she found her answer in her choice to quit relying on a diet-plan service that resulted in plastic containers to pile up in her home. Since then, she has decided to prepare her own meals herself and in so doing, she has saved on expenses while reducing waste in her life.
As the top prize winner, Ms. Serrano received an educational trip to Japan and other special prizes. She will also represent the Philippines in the Grand Final Contest in Okayama, Japan. The winner of this grand contest will receive a 2-year scholarship at any of the three universities under the KAKE Educational Institution.
Similarly, Francesca Lucia Galve and Tessa Garcia, the second and third prize winners respectively, also shared their insights on environmental protection and preservation. With a focus on taking responsibility for one’s use of resources and committing to doing the right thing, no matter how small, everyone can make an impact in reversing the damage to the environment brought about by the wasteful lifestyles of recent times.
Mr. Ken Nakamura, Director of the Japan Information and Culture Center of the Embassy of Japan, Ms. Hitomi Kohara, Department of International Affairs of the Kake Educational Institution, and Mr. Kenjiro Ogata, the Academic Adviser of NCF-PIJLC were the panel of Judges for the 8th Kake Competition. Also in attendance were: Ms. Ma. Isabel Laurel-Dimayuga, Deputy Administrator of the PJFF, and Ms. Carmencita Biscarra, the Faculty Development Manager of NCF-PIJLC.
The KAKE International Japanese Speech Contest is an annual competition that gives international learners of the Nihongo an opportunity to showcase their skills. Meanwhile, by listening to the speeches of their peers as well as the contestants in the International round, students of NCF-PIJLC can also deepen their understanding of the language and ‘the Japan’ that is felt by other generations and by people from other countries around the world.