The ANZCCJ Shinnenkai was held on Wednesday, January 29th, 2020, in the Hamarikyu Ballroom of the Conrad Hotel Tokyo. This year, in an effort to raise funds for the Australian bushfire crisis, we turned the event into the “ANZCCJ Charity Shinnenkai.” While marking the beginning of 2020 and recognising our successes in 2019, it was also necessary for us to express our condolences toward Australia; to the people that have lost their homes, their loved ones, their precious animals and the bushland. We are proud to announce that we have raised ¥1,500,000; and we would like to extend our deepest thanks to everyone who participated in the raffle and auction, as well as everyone who donated items for both events.
The Shinnenkai commenced at 6:30 pm, with free-flowing drinks and our MC, Chair Emiratis Melanie Brock’s welcome. Melanie then welcomed our special guests; Australian Ambassador to Japan HE Richard Court, New Zealand Ambassador to Japan HE Hamish Cooper, JCCI and TCCI Chair Dr Akio Mimura, Odawara Chamber Chair Teisuke Suzuki and Chair of the Chamber, Sally Townsend. Sally spoke about the Australian bushfires, expressing her pain for Australia while encouraging people to maintain their hope and positivity in relation to Australian business continuity.
Ambassador Court expressed his thanks for the donations flowing in to help Australia get back on its feet. He outlined that Australia still aims to accommodate tourists, send Australian produce across the world and continue to encourage student exchanges. He highlighted successes that mark Japan and Australia furthering their connection, including new air links and the forthcoming JCCI Delegation’s mission to Australia. The Australian Embassy Tokyo kindly donated a rugby jersey signed by the Wallabies national team for the Charity Auction.
Ambassador Cooper expressed his sympathy for the Australian bushfires and outlined how New Zealand has been eager to support their neighbour. New Zealand has sent 170 firefighters to Australia, along with defense force assets. Ambassador Cooper expressed his hope for Australia’s future and renewal. He outlined successes in New Zealand Japan relations, such as the JCCI Delegation also visiting New Zealand and the opportunities arising from the CPTPP agreement. The New Zealand Embassy Tokyo also donated a dinner for six with Ambassador Hamish Cooper and Trade Commissioner Craig Pettigrew to the Charity Auction.
Dr. Mimura began with a reflection on the successes of the 2019 Rugby World Cup. He also expressed his support for Australia during this time of hardship and emphasised the importance of further cooperation between Japan, Australia and New Zealand as like-minded countries. He drew particular attention to the forthcoming inaugural JCCI Delegation to Australia and its increased importance in this time of critical need. Thank you, Dr Mimura, for attending and speaking at the Shinnenkai.
Other items donated to the Charity Auction included a Champagne Diamond from Rio Tinto, a signed shirt from the 2016 All Blacks International Rugby Championship Squad, a signed All Blacks 2019 Rugby World Cup shirt from AIG Holdings, two soccer uniforms (one signed by Kagawa Shinji), three baseball gloves donated by Adidas and a John Wilson voucher for creative consulting donated by John Wilson.
Thank you to those who donated time, money and items to the ANZCCJ Charity Shinnenkai 2020. We hope to see you all again soon.