Prensa Nikkei newspaper readers visited the Gardena Valley Cultural Institute to promote international dialogue between Japanese Peruvians and Japanese Americans.Photo: Michelle Yamashiro

By P.C. Staff

Prensa Nikkei, one of two major Japanese Peruvian newspapers, visited the Gardena Valley Cultural Institute on May 22, hoping to learn about the Japanese American experience.

Prensa Nikkei Director Manuel Tsuneo Higo and Program Leader Enrique Yamashiro coordinated the visit for newspaper subscribers. The group toured the GVJCI campus, the community library and the JCI Gardens Apartments.

The visit also included a ukulele concert held by Chika Nagata, and a hula performance led by teacher Harriet Nagata.

During lunch, a stories exchange occurred, where both Japanese Peruvians and Japanese Americans had an opportunity to share wartime narratives. Stories about incarceration during World War II as well as experiences from Lima were among the few that were shared.

Julio Ishizawa Ohba described how Japanese families lived in fear of being “blacklisted in Lima, Peru, during WWII. Ohba’s family was forced to leave Lima in fear of being “blacklisted” during this time.

GVJCI and groups like Prensa Nikkei hope to continue relations and exchange stories in future events.