Hiroshima University freshmen learn about A-bomb exhibitions held in Honduras

by Akira Koyama

On May 7, 2008, freshmen in the Faculty of Applied Biological Science at Hiroshima University listened to a talk given by a former Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteer (JOCV) who held A-bomb exhibitions in Honduras, located in Central America. The session was part of a new program in peace education that the university has begun to implement since this spring.

Fifty-three students attended the presentation which was held at the Chugoku International Center of the Japan International Cooperation Agency, near the university campus. Tetsuya Kimura, 32, who spent two years in Honduras and returned to Japan this past March, spoke about his experience of organizing A-bomb exhibitions in three cities.

At the exhibitions, Mr. Kimura conveyed A-bomb survivors' testimonies and displayed photos of Hiroshima after the bombing. He also showed visitors how to fold paper cranes. One of the questions asked by local residents was “Is Hiroshima still a burnt plain?”

Kohei Shintaku, 18, one of the students who listened to Mr. Kimura's talk, said, “I'm eager to learn more about the world and see it from different perspectives.”

The motto of Hiroshima University is “A single unified university, free and pursuing peace.” Based on this motto, starting this spring, all freshmen are required to visit five peace-related facilities in Hiroshima, such as Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum.