President’s Message

I hope everyone is staying safe and healthy despite the several heavy snowstorms since the start this year. In Japan, I hear that plum and peach blossoms are in full bloom. Spring in Toronto is just around the corner too. Isn’t it exciting to be waiting for spring?

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their support over the past year. Thank you to everyone who supported JSS in so many ways, whether through membership, fundraising, volunteering, donations, programs and services, or by spreading the word about our activities through your networks.

Now, I would like to briefly report on the fundraising events that took place in the second half of 2022.

First, in October, we held a walk/fundraiser “June Yamamoto memorial walk” named after the late Mrs. Junko Yamamoto, our first fundraising chair. We enjoyed walking along the trail near JCCC while enjoying the autumn leaves. The staff and board members had a great time walking with the community members and light lunch. We would like to express our heartfelt thanks to all who participated and donated, and to Mr. Sam Yamamoto, who graciously allowed us to use his late wife’s name.

I would also like to report that the annual JSS Holiday Drive was held at the end of the year and was a great success. Thanks to the many volunteers and supporters, we were able to make this the largest mutual aid drive ever. We would also like to thank Mr. Marty Kobayashi for his generous donation, and the Consulate-General of Japan in Toronto and other community organizations for publicizing the event. For more information about the outcome of the event, please click here.

This year, we have received warm support from the Toronto Buddhist Church Sangha. We were very pleased to hear that they have resumed their face-to-face activities after a long pandemic.

Finally, I would like to provide an update on JSS’s upcoming events.

In June, JSS will hold its third annual JSS Challenge, a fundraising walkathon event. JSS Challenge began in 2021 as a fundraising walkathon event to replace the Toronto Challenge, in which JSS has participated for many years under tireless leadership of Mr. Tokugi Suyama, honorary board member of JSS. Due to the pandemic and weather conditions, the past two events have been virtual walkathons using ZOOM, but this year we hope to make it a hybrid event, both in-person and remotely. We hope you will all join us!

Also in late June, we will be holding our Annual General Meeting, which will be a valuable opportunity to report on our activities in 2022 and to discuss the future of JSS with our members and the community. We look forward to seeing you there.