JCIE held the second Networking Conference as a part of the Supporting Youths of Diverse Roots and an Inclusive Society (SYDRIS) initiative, which is providing grants to organizations that offer innovative approaches to ensure that young people with foreign roots can thrive in Japan.
The second conference provided an opportunity for organizations to share the positive results of their work, evaluate the impact of COVID-19, and think about how to demonstrate SYRDIS’ collective impact.
The meeting opened with each organization reporting on the status of project implementation amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the prolonged pandemic period, new results have shown that by postponing and reevaluating in-person meetings and gatherings, and by taking measures to utilize online tools, organizations have been able to expand their reach.
Next, organizations shared the status of their activities, emphasizing that addressing social issues such as the educational and employment challenges facing foreign youth in Japan through connecting each organization’s activities, will be a significant outcome of the project. To this end, JCIE explained that it will provide support and engage with development and advocacy activities in order to strengthen the organizational infrastructure that supports each group’s activities. At the Q&A session, it was confirmed that the overall direction of the project emphasizes efforts to engage stakeholders and other interested parties in order to share the new support models that have emerged both through collaboration between JCIE and each organization and among the organizations themselves.
Lastly, JCIE’s evaluation advisor, Dr. Tatsuaki Kobayashi (senior researcher at the Center for Social Investment at Tama University), explained the use of Social Impact Assessment to communicate results. He pointed out that Social Impact Assessment is still poorly recognized in public interest activities and its significance is not fully conveyed, and he stressed the importance of highlighting its advantages, such as improving business, strengthening cooperation with stakeholders, visualizing results, and improving social recognition and credibility. Dr. Kobayashi also noted that in addition to each organization communicating the results of their own work, it is important at the same time to organize and present the activities of the individual organizations in a way that conveys the collective impact of the SYDRIS initiative as a whole, which can have a greater impact than any organization could achieve on its own.
To learn more about this conference (in Japanese), please click here.