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Sunday, March 20, 2005

KANSAI: Who & What

Osaka YWCA offering tour to Shiga Prefecture:

The Osaka YWCA's Bridges Program is planning a one-day tour to Shiga Prefecture for English-speaking foreigners.

Participants in the March 26 event will go to the Gokasho district of Higashiomi to walk along the white-walled warehouses and the carp-filled streams. The visit will include old houses of merchants to see various "hina" dolls that have been handed down for generations. Hina dolls are usually displayed around March 3, the day of the Hina Matsuri festival for girls. The display consists of two dolls representing a married couple, often dressed in ancient court costumes, along with many other figures and decorations.

Participants will meet 10 a.m. at the ticket gate of JR Notogawa Station.

The fee is 700 yen. Lunch and transportation are not included.

Reservations must be made by Wednesday.

For reservations and more information, call the program's coordinator at (090) 9253-7150 or e-mail usagi9999@yahoo.co.jp

Non-Japanese invited to learn tea ceremony:

The Osaka Sister City Network is organizing an interactive seminar for non-Japanese residents on the tea ceremony from 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. April 9 at International House, Osaka, in Tennoji Ward.

The manners and spirit of the tea ceremony will be introduced by volunteer instructors, followed by participants joining the ceremony.

Participation is 1,000 yen. Thirty applicants will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.

For applications and more information, call the organizer at (06) 6772-9670, fax (06) 6772-9790 or e-mail cir@sisterc.net

Rengo Osaka providing help for work problems:

The Osaka Local of the Japanese Trade Union Confederation, or Rengo Osaka, is offering a telephone consultation service for non-Japanese workers 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday to Saturday.

Lawyers and other specialists will provide advice on issues which often faced by foreigners in the workplace, including employment, laws, immigration procedures, social insurance and pension.

Interpreters will be available in English, Chinese, Korean, Spanish, Portuguese, Tagalog, Thai and Indonesian. Advice will be given in strict confidence.

The service is free, but the fee for the call must be paid by the caller.

For consultations and more information, call the organizer at (06) 6949-0005.

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