We are an NGO based in Tokyo, Japan, and we work to promote a culture of peace, human rights, sustainable development and respect for the environment.
We pursue these goals through a chartered passenger ship which travels the world on voyages of peace. Many educational programs are conducted on board and participants gain a unique insight into the ports and the many issues faced in the countries we visit.
We invite about 25-30 volunteers on each voyage. We have two different types of volunteer positions:
1) Volunteer Interpreters: who have a high fluency in Japanese and who can interpret between Japanese and English or between Japanese and Spanish.
2) Volunteer Language Instructors: English Teachers or Spanish Teachers who have at least 18 months of full time teaching experience and are passionate about language and education.
You can study a ton of stuff onboard the ship from traditional Japanese board games to social dance, Salsa, Taichi, Yoga and more depending on the voyage and what is offered. Many volunteers decide to participate in an onboard family experience and/or Japanese language classes. Lots of chances to play sports together, sing together, do exchange tours in ports, the list goes on and on!
The ship departs on round-the-world voyages three times per year and we need help on every voyage.
For the volunteer Interpreter:
We are looking for volunteer interpreters who speak Japanese and also English, Korean, Chinese and/or Spanish. We require help with interpreting lectures and workshops onboard our cruise ship as it travels around the world visiting around 20 countries. You will also be asked to help out on tours in several of the ports that we visit.
For the volunteer language Instructor:
As a volunteer language instructor, your main role will be teaching both group and private lessons onboard to Japanese students. However, there are also open classes, opportunities to assist during in port programs where students use the language they learn on the boat, chances to organize language workshops, and more. Once you have completed your "duties" as a volunteer teacher, there are loads of opportunities to get involved and contribute to life on board. Maybe you could facilitate a workshop about cross-cultural communication, or you could lead a series of events about gender or development, or you could start a band with the ukulele you just picked up in Tahiti, or maybe just stare at the ocean for a while. You are only limited by your creativity (and the fact that there are only 24 hours in a day).
Chinese (Mandarin): Fließend
Accommodation and three meals per day are also provided. Cozy cabins await you on the ship. You usually share with one other volunteer. Each cabin has a private bathroom/shower, twin beds, desk, closets, etc. Most volunteers are pleasantly surprised. That being said, they aren't super spacious and there are two ships, so there are a variety of rooms made available depending on where you are posted. But when you are surrounded by beautiful ocean and there is a boat full of events and people, the cabin is usually just a place to sleep at the end of the day.
Our head office is in Tokyo, but we are able to get in touch with people all around the world via skype.
As a volunteer on the ship, you have the opportunity to contribute to and create meaningful experiences for your students onboard. It's a busy and sometimes intense environment but we also know that it is really meaningful and an unforgettable experience.
For volunteer instructors, other than helping out occasionally in port with exchanges or events, you will also mostly have free time in port to explore by yourself or with other teachers. We visit different ports on each voyage. Since the voyages end and begin in Japan, there are a majority of Japanese passengers onboard. Thus, there are lots of opportunities to learn about Japanese culture and learn/practice your Japanese as well. After a few weeks onboard and when things have settled down, we try to organize volunteer Japanese classes for our instructors as well so they can learn or improve their Japanese. Of course, this is just an option and Japanese isn't a requirement to join the voyage (unless you want to be a volunteer interpreter). Meanwhile, people from other parts of the world join different sections of the voyage so there are also chances to meet people from all over the world.
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Varies greatly, but usually 5 hours per day most days throughout the voyage