Kenya Tomonkai

About the Kenya Tomonkai

Inaugurated in 2001, the Nairobi Tomonkai had the opportunity to welcome then Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori who was visiting Kenya. Afterwards, the feeling that we should formally register the Kenya Tomonkai gathered momentum among Waseda alumni living in Kenya. We started preparing for the registration of the Kenya Tomonkai in 2016. In 2017, the Kenya Tomonkai was inaugurated as the only registered Tomonkai in sub-Saharan Africa. Shunichi Kobayashi , former Chairman of the Nairobi Tomonkai (the predecessor of the Kenya Tomonkai) assumed the post of the honorary Chairman, and Sachio Yotsukura became the Chairman. Some of the former members moved to other countries in Africa after leaving Kenya, and now we have a network in Rwanda, Ghana, and other countries. Starting this year, we are holding Waseda-Keio gatherings in cooperation with the Kenya Mitakai.
Masayoshi Ito (Graduated in 1997, School of Political Science and Economics)


Waseda-Keio gathering with the Kenya Mitakai (in the year 2018)

The attractive points of kenya

The word “Kenya” reminds us of a rich natural environment, the so-called Big Five animals (lions, African elephants, buffalos, leopards, and rhinos), brave Masai tribesmen who live vigorously while enjoying the blessings of that nature, and marathon runners who train themselves in Eldoret whose height is over 2,000 meters above sea level.

Kenya is blessed with tourist resources with national parks even in the capital city of Nairobi, which strongly attracts people. However, tourist resources are not the only attraction of Kenya. The country is the largest economy in the East African Community (EAC), and its recent economic growth rate is high at around five percent. The capital city, Nairobi, is the largest business hub in East Africa, and Mombasa, the second largest city in Kenya, located on the coast of the Indian Ocean, is the starting point for distribution utilizing the Northern Economic Corridor which connects the city to inland areas.

The Sixth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) was held in Nairobi in 2016. The conference, which was held in Africa for the first time, was concluded peacefully and succesfully. In his speech at the opening of the conference, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe showed support for the “Free and Open Indo-Pacific Strategy. ” The coast of the Indian Ocean in the southeastern part of the African continent is the western edge of the economic zone of the “Indo-Pacific Strategy.” In 2019, the seventh conference will be held in Yokohama.
Masayoshi Ito (Graduated in 1997, School of Political Science and Economics)


A new business area with many government offices and financial institutions

Lions in a national park overlooking the skyscrapers in Nairobi

Message from the Chairman

Jambo ! (Hello!) I am Sachio Yotsukura, the Chairman of the Kenya Tomonkai.

When hearing the word “Kenya,” many people will think of its vast nature, wildlife, and excellent athletes including those for track and field competitions. Although a little far from Japan, Nairobi is located on a highland of nearly 1,800 meters above sea level and is a modern city with comfortable climate with temperatures around 20 degrees Celsius throughout the year.

We have established the Kenya Tomonkai mainly with the alumni living or stationed in Kenya. On this occasion, I would like to tell everyone about Kenya’s attractions based on my actual experiences.

At present, there are about 800 Japanese people living in Kenya, who have established multi-layered, friendly relationships with Kenyan people in government offices, private companies, international organizations, NGOs and so on. Of course, many Waseda alumni are playing active roles in such organizations. We at the Kenya Tomonkai wish to become a bridge between Japan and Kenya, and Japan and Africa.
Sachio Yotsukura (Graduated in 1983, School of Commerce)

Messages from the Members

I am Koji Noda, the leader of Kenya Tomonkai Japanese branche. One day in September 2016, through the conversations with my colleagues of Waseda alumni in the Kenya office of JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency), we came up with an idea to hold the gathering of alumni living in Kenya. This gathering motivated us to establish the Kenya Tomonkai. After I returned to Japan leaving my position in Kenya, Waseda alumni who still lived in Kenya thankfully took the efforts to formally register the Kenya Tomonkai. Recollecting the verse of Waseda’s anthem, I do hope the ties among Waseda alumni will be passed down as we “share these ideals and their light” in Kenya on the land of Africa, though it is far away from Japan.
Koji Noda (Graduated in 1989, School of Political Science and Economics)

I am participating in the Kenya Tomonkai from Kigali, Rwanda (about 750 kilometers west from Nairobi) which has continued to develop economically after overcoming the Genocide against the Tutsi which took place 24 years ago. I was given the opportunity to participate in the Kenya Tomonkai as I used to live in Nairobi when the Kenya Tomonkai was inaugurated. Although I do not have much chance to participate in the events in Kenya, I am determined to promote the activities of the Tomonkai here in Rwanda, just like the members who are living in Kenya. The Kenya Tomonkai is in action even in Rwanda, the land of 1,000 hills.
Masanobu Mayusumi (Graduated in 1994, School of Science and Engineering)

I am involved in international students programs here. Kenya is sending more international students to Japan to study than other African countries. Some study at Waseda. And some of such students volunteered to establish an all-Africa network called Kakehashi Africa (http://kakehashiafrica.com/). The headquarters are situated in Nairobi. I hope both Japanese and African Waseda alumni continue to play an active role as a bridge between Japan and Kenya, and Japan and Africa.
Masayoshi Ito (Graduated in 1997, School of Political Science and Economics)

I participated in the Keio-Waseda gathering with the Kenya Mitakai for the first time the other day. I never thought I would be able to connect with Waseda alumni in a place like Kenya far away from Japan. Although the year we graduated and the industries we are in are different, there is something we can share just because we are all Waseda alumni, and the existence of Waseda alumni helps us as we lead our lives here.

There are many things we find inconvenient in Kenya, but its climate is wonderful! If you are ever transferred to Kenya, please become a member of the Kenya Tomonkai!
Yuko Wakita (Graduated in 2009, School of Humanities and Social Sciences)


A commemorative photo at a gathering held before the Tomonkai was officially registered (in 2016)

List of Overseas Branches/
Overseas Tomonkai/
Overseas Tomonkai
Japanese Branches

Overseas Branches
Alumni Association in China / Alumni Association in Korea / Alumni Association in Taiwan
Overseas Tomonkai
Asia
Bangalore Tomonkai / Bangkok Tomonkai / Beijing Tomonkai / Cambodia Tomonkai /
Dalian Tomonkai / Hanoi Tomonkai / Hong Kong Tomonkai / India Tomonkai /
Jakarta Tomonkai / Kanan (South China) Tomonkai / Malaysia Tomonkai / Manila Tomonkai / Mumbai Tomonkai / Myanmar Tomonkai / Saigon Tomonkai / Seoul Tomonkai / Shanghai Tomonkai / Singapore Tomonkai / Suzhou Tomonkai / Taipei Tomonkai / Ulan Bator Tomonkai
Oceania
Brisbane Tomonkai / Melbourne Tomonkai / Perth Tomonkai / Sydney Tomonkai
North America
Boston Tomonkai / Chicago Tomonkai / Georgia Tomonkai / Hawaii Tomonkai / Los Angeles Tomonkai / Michigan Tomonkai / New York Tomonkai / San Francisco Tomonkai / Seattle Tomonkai / Toronto Tomonkai / Vancouver Tomonkai / Greater Washington Tomonkai
Central and South America
Brazil Tomonkai / Chile Tomonkai / Lima Tomonkai / Mexico Tomonkai
Europe
Belgium Tomonkai / Berlin Tomonkai / Denmark Tomonkai / Dusseldorf Tomonkai /
Frankfurt Tomonkai / Geneva Tomonkai / Moscow Tomonkai / Netherlands Tomonkai / Paris Tomonkai / Stockholm Tomonkai / UK Tomonkai
Middle East
Abu Dhabi Tomonkai / Qatar Tomonkai / Tehran Tomonkai
Africa
Egypt Tomonkai / Johannesburg Tomonkai / Kenya Tomonkai
Overseas Tomonkai Japanese Branches
Bangkok Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Beijing Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Dusseldorf Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Gaoxiong Tomonkai Alumni Association / Hanoi Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Jakarta Tomonkai Alumni Association / Los Angeles Tomonkai Japan / New York Tomonkai Tokyo Branch /
Paris Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Saigon Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Shanghai Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Singapore Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Tokyo Brazil Tomonkai / Tokyo Hong Kong Tomonkai / Tokyo Melbourne Tomonkai / UK Tomonkai Tokyo Branch