How Do You Get Along with "Foreign Neighbors?"Guidebook for Japanese in Kyoto
How do you invite foreigners who have just moved in to the neighbor's association? How do you inform them where the safe place (shelter) is? Foreign Women's Association Paruyon, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto, has published "Tonari no Gaikoku-jin tono Otsukiai," or getting along with your foreign neighbors, a guidebook to facilitate relationships with foreigners in one's community.
Paruyon published a pamphlet for foreign residents as a guide to how to live in Japan in 2016. In parallel with that, it has been preparing a pamphlet for Japanese. According to the survey they conducted of roughly 200 Japanese in Kyoto Prefecture, 77% replied that "they would like to interact with foreigners if they live in their neighborhood," whereas some expressed worries that it would be difficult to talk to foreigners due to language and cultural differences.
Contents of the newly-published guidebook include how to talk in "plain Japanese" that uses simple phrases and avoids honorific expressions, and "Point-and-Speak English Conversation" which shows simple English phrases. It also includes handouts which explain rules for putting out garbage and locations of safe places with English and Chinese translations.
Nina Hakkarainen, Paruyon's representative living in Kamigyo Ward, said, "When foreigners move into your neighborhood, I hope you to use this guide to get along with them."
Five thousand copies of this A4-size, 28-page guidebook have been published. It is free. It will be distributed from Kamigyo Ward Office and can be also downloaded from Paruyon's website.(Translated by Mie Hiuzon, Psyche et l’Amour, Inc.)