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On October 1 (Sat.) and 2 (Sun.), GLOBAL FESTA JAPAN 2011, the nation's largest event on the theme of international cooperation, takes place at the Hibiya Park. Since 1990, the event has been held annually to commemorate the International Cooperation Day (October 6). Participants of the event include international cooperation NGOs, government agencies, international organizations, embassies, and businesses, who will share information about their global activities and efforts and will also sell a variety of products from developing countries. In addition, the event features popular food booths serving dishes from around the world. Last year, the event was host to over 280 groups and organizations as exhibitors and attracted about 105,000 visitors during the two-day event period.

Marking its 21st year, the event this year aims to bring focus to the significance of the connection and bond between Japan and the world by reflecting on all of the support and assistance provided to Japan from the world, including many developing countries, following the Great East Japan Earthquake in March. While reaffirming the need of continued support for the ongoing recovery process from the disaster, the event also inspires visitors to realize that mutual cooperation is an important key to the solution of various other issues and difficulties that our world is facing, including global poverty. A display of supporting messages collected from around the world to victims of the disaster, and an exhibition of pictures drawn by children in the affected areas, are among many special programs of the event. The "Help Tohoku Corner" will also be set up to promote further support to the victims of the disaster for their recovery.

To promote a better understanding of the international cooperation in a fun and familiar way, the event also features various entertainment programs, including talk show events with actress Norika Fujiwara and other celebrities. Also scheduled is the UNHCR Refugee Film Festival, and live gospel performances. The event is free of admission and welcomes anyone who is interested in discovering the global connection and becoming part of the efforts to make our world better. For more details, visit the event's official website from the link below (the site is available in Japanese only).

GLOBAL FESTA JAPAN 2011 official website (in Japanese only)

Image credit:Executive committee of Global Festa JAPAN 2011