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Japanese Cultural Center Of Hawaii (JCCH)

What’s Happening at the JCCH

Hoʻohana Cohort Program

The JCCH’s
Hoʻohana Cohort Program aims to engage, connect, and equip the next generation of community activators to create long-term sustainability in aging grassroots organizations. Once selected, participants will engage in once-a-month training to progressively strengthen their self-identity and deepen their understanding of the tenets of Aloha. Applications are now being accepted for this year’s cohort.

Learn More

Applications due by Friday, February 23, 2024 at 11:55 PM HST

Applications Due This Friday!

Kibou for Maui is a new program in partnership with the TOMODACHI Initiative and Odyssey Japan to engage, inspire, and empower high school juniors and seniors impacted by the Lahaina wildfires. Applications are due by January 26, 2024 (11:59 PM HST). Contact for more information.

Apply Here

Training Dates (on Maui): March 1 and 2, 2024
Travel Dates: March 17 - 24, 2024
JCCH Craft & Collectibles Fair

Save the date for the return of the monthly
JCCH Craft & Collectibles Fair! Shop with local small business vendors that will feature Japanese and Japanese-inspired goods. The JCCH Gift Shop and Historical Gallery will also be open. More information about a special Gift Shop sale will be announced soon!

Saturday, February 10, 2024 | 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM
JCCH Office Featured Ikebana

Each week, our ikebana volunteers generously donate an ikebana arrangement to display in our administrative office lobby. We hope you enjoy this special design!

Ikebana by:
Irene Nakamoto

感謝 - With Gratitude
2024 New Year's ʻOhana Festival Recap

Community and culture are at the heart of everything we do. Hear from community members that attended this year's festival as they share their reasons why cultural events are a vital part of our community. This video was filmed and produced by Ricky-Thomas Serikawa with support from the Hawaiʻi State Foundation on Culture and the Arts (SFCA) through appropriations from the Legislature of the State of Hawai‘i or grants from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).
Mahalo to Our Festival Supporters!

Community Announcements
PBS Hawaiʻi Upcoming Viewing Opportunities

PBS Hawaiʻi will air Voices Behind Barbed Wire: Stories from Hawaiʻi on Sunday, February 4, 2024 at 1:00 PM and Thursday February 8, 2024 at 8:30 PM. This film will also be available online for two weeks beginning on Thursday, February 1, 2024.

Learn More

Image: East-West Center
Exhibition Opening Reception

Join the
East-West Center at UH Mānoa for the opening of Kabuki in Hawai‘i: Connections through Time and Space at the East-West Center Gallery. The reception will include a performance and guided tour with guest curator Julie A. Iezzi. The gallery exhibition is on display until Sunday, May 5, 2024. Admission is free.

Learn More

Sunday, January 28, 2024
1:00 - 2:30 PM

Remembering Our History

38 Years Ago: Challenger Disaster

This Sunday, we will take a moment to remember the Challenger disaster that occured on January 28, 1986. Seven crew members, including
Astronaut Ellison S. Onizuka of Kealakekua (Kona), were aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger when it malfunctioned and exploded 73 seconds after liftoff, tragically taking the lives of all crew members.

JCCH Historical Gallery contains a small exhibit dedicated to Ellison and the Space Shuttle Challenger.

Image: NASA
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Copyright (C) 2024 Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii. All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii
2454 South Beretania Street
Honolulu, HI 96826

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The Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i (JCCH), a non-profit organization, strives to share the history, heritage and culture of the evolving Japanese American experience in Hawai‘i. Located at 2454 South Beretania Street in Mō‘ili‘ili, the Cultural Center features a Community and Historical Gallery, Resource Center, Kenshikan martial arts dōjō, Seikōan Japanese teahouse and Gift Shop. The Cultural Center presents various programs, festivals and exhibitions throughout the year.


Honoring our heritage. Embracing our diversity. Sharing our future.


We aspire to co-create a society where a deeper knowledge of one's heritage and a profound understanding of oneself will enable enlightened connections among all people.

Mission Statement

To be a vibrant resource, strengthening our diverse community by educating present and future generations in the evolving Japanese American experience in Hawai‘i. We do this through relevant programming, meaningful community service and innovative partnerships that enhance the understanding and celebration of our heritage, culture and love of the land. To guide us in this work we draw from the values found in our Japanese American traditions and the spirit of Aloha.


The seeds of thought and planning which had since developed into the solid concrete of Phase I and the working committees of the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i were sown over two generations ago. Minds and hearts of Issei and Nisei (first and second generations) forebearers set themselves to the tasks of survival, later to national heroism, and later still to the responsibility of restoring the concept of cultural pride in themselves and their community. Emotions generated by the Kanyaku Imin (125 Years of Japanese In Hawai‘i) celebration in February of 1985 spurred the devotion of major Japanese groups in the community to initially conceptualize the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai'i.

In 1986, The Honolulu Japanese Chamber of Commerce (HJCC) initiated the Japan-Hawaii Cultural Center project, "The Dream," for the purpose of bringing together related organizations in Hawai‘i to work in a common effort to preserve the legacy and history of the pioneers who came to Hawaii from Japan, and whose sacrifices and contributions made it possible for the younger generations to become integral members of American society. It was planned to be a legacy where future members of our community could look back and be fully conscious of their roots. The Center would also foster relations by promoting harmony and mutual understanding between Japan, Hawai‘i, and the United States.

The Honolulu Japanese Chamber of Commerce was willing to accept the enormous responsibility of immortalizing and cultivating the legacy of the Japanese in Hawai‘i by making a commitment to plant and nourish the seedling. Many community organizations supported the creation of a Japanese cultural center, as indicated by a survey to assess the need and expectations for a center.

Courses of action plans were implemented to create Ad Hoc Committees composed of the various Japan related organizations, and to organize a fund-raising organization to raise funds from the community within the State of Hawai‘i as well as in Japan. Committees set in motion to carefully plan, develop, and research in establishing the Cultural Center. The inception of some committees were: Steering, Planning, Public Relations, Historical Research Program, Program, Membership and Property Management. A schedule of "Milestone" tasks for these committees were implemented to prepare for the tremendous work that lay ahead in the formation of the Cultural Center.

On May, 28, 1987, the birth of a new direction and a new step toward the dreams of our forefathers emerged as the Cultural Center was incorporated under the laws of the State of Hawai‘i as a non-profit corporation to develop, own, maintain, and operate a Japanese cultural center in Hawai‘i. As an independent entity, the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i would play a most crucial role in perpetuating the cultural heritage we inherited from our Issei forefathers into the lifestyles and values of our children's children.

Revamped, Revved and Ready... the Cultural Center Boards and staff moves forward with great aspirations

The Board of Directors consists of 15 community leaders from O‘ahu, Maui, Kaua‘i and Hawai‘i counties who lead the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i by establishing policies and strategic direction. Each Director either chairs and /or is a member of the Executive Committee, Governance Committee, Membership Development Committee, Fundraising Committee, Facilities & Operations Committee, and Budget & Finance Committee. The Board members are elected by the membership as a whole.

The Board of Governors currently has forty (40) members who advise and make recommendations to the Board of Directors, and oversee the implementation of programs and activities of the Cultural Center. The Board of Governors also assist and maintain the fiscal well-being of the Center by supporting its fundraising activities. The Board of Governors are appointed by the Board of Directors.

The staff of nine full-time and two part-time employees is led by the President & Executive Director who administers the day-to-day operations of the Cultural Center.

The Board of Directors, Board of Governors and the staff, and volunteers work in unison to carry out the many exciting plans at the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i. When put together these individuals, though all unique in their background, create a dynamic, capable and passionate group who are dedicated to the Cultural Center's mission of sharing the history, heritage and culture of the evolving Japanese American experience in Hawai‘i.


Historical Gallery & Gift Shop: Thursday, Friday, Saturday, 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM

Resource Center: By Appointment Only

Administrative Office: By Appointment Only

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