CSR Relay Column Vol.4 "Conveying the message of social responsibility" - Committee for Social Responsibility Member AKABANE Makiko
16 October 2019
As the sole organisation that presides over the sport of football in Japan, the JFA has established their principle as follows: "Through football, we realise the full benefits that sports can bring to our lives the soundness of our bodies, the expansion of our minds, and the enrichment of our societies." Consisted by five experts in the field of corporate social responsibility (CSR), the Committee for Social Responsibility is one of JFA's Expert Committees that covers “how" the JFA can contribute to the society.
In order to share the activities carried out by the Committee for Social Responsibility, we have started a relay column by the members of the committee. As our fourth relay column, we will share the article on “Conveying the message of social responsibility," written by our fellow member AKABANE Makiko, who is the Director of CSR Asia Japan office.
Vol.4: Committee for Social Responsibility Member AKABANE Makiko
JFA and “Social Contribution Activity”
JFA is a public interest incorporated foundation who shares the following principle, "Through football, we realise the full benefits that sports can bring to our lives the soundness of our bodies, the expansion of our minds, and the enrichment of our societies." Therefore, the JFA’s social contribution activities carried out through football embodies their principle and their existence as a legal entity.
In order to incorporate the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations, the social contribution activities carried out by the JFA are constructed based on three basic principles. The first principle is to “Embrace diversity.” The JFA’s mission is to spread the message that football is a sport for everyone, regardless of their age, gender, race, nationality, whether they are with or without disabilities. To accomplish their mission, the JFA has been involved to develop and spread inclusive football and women’s football, while holding tournaments for the senior generations. The second principle is to “Develop the next generation,” as the JFA has conducted various programmes to develop young children and youth players, while getting involved in international exchange and social action programmes in Asia. The third principle is to “Create a comfortable community for everyone.” For an example, the “JFA Green Project” is a project that encourages kids to play outside, while promoting the development of natural turf fields, which can be the central piece of the community where the people can gather. Also, in efforts to fight against child poverty, the JFA has supported the Bunkyo-ward’s “Kids eating at home project” to provide support for families living in poverty.
The International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) and Asian Football Confederation (AFC) have also been putting tireless efforts in their social contribution activities through football. Their activities are focused to respect diversity while supporting grassroots activities, so that anyone can enjoy football and nurture self-respect through the sport, wherever they live.
The JFA has held many social contribution activities including the “JFA Nadeshiko Hiroba,” which is a project launched to promote women’s football in Japan.
The Importance to “Spread the Information”
While organisations like the JFA and FIFA have conducted various social contribution activities, there is something that is almost as important as “conducting” these activities, and that is “spreading the information.” Some may say that social contribution activities should be carried out solemnity, but that is not always the case. By spreading the word, we can put the spotlight on a particular social issue and allow people to acknowledge that there are people suffering from that issue. Being quite and modest is a well-respected virtue in Japan, but by being outspoken, we can get evaluated from others and gain precious opportunities to improve ourselves.
FIFA referee SATO Ryuji giving a lecture at JFA Kokoro Project "Dream Class." The activities carried out by the JFA are constantly being posted on the official website of JFA.
Treasuring the Opinions from the Stakeholders
By conducting social contribution activities, it is easy for an organisation to slip into self-complacency. That is why it is important to listen to the opinions of the stakeholders and take action to address the demands. The JFA has conducted various surveys, including the “Grassroots survey,” to listen to the voices of the actual people involved in each activity. The official website of the JFA has also listed comments from the participants of each event, giving an insight on the direction for the organisation’s future.
The 1st JFA Grassroots Promotion Partner Conference was held on Sunday 20 May 2018
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