Disaster support activities(Great East Japan Earthquake/Kumamoto earthquakes/relief efforts)
With the aim of providing support for reconstruction of areas affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake, Honda has been implementing the ASIMO Special Class and TOMODACHI Honda Cultural Exchange Program.
The ASIMO Special Class, launched in 2011, introduces the performance and functions of the ASIMO humanoid robot mainly to children in elementary schools in the disaster-affected areas of Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures in order to highlight the importance of having a dream and taking on new challenges. Activities were undertaken at 19 schools in 2016, the final year of the program. Since the launch, classes have been held at a total of 130 schools, with around 21,000 children participating.
The TOMODACHI Honda Cultural Exchange Program trains young people to take leadership for their own development. Bringing together high school students from the affected areas for cultural exchanges with students from the United States provides students with a global perspective of the future so they can use their hopes and dreams to boldly take on challenges and make the world their stage. In keeping with the spirit of the TOMODACHI Initiative sponsored by the U.S. Embassy and U.S.- Japan Council, in conjunction with American Honda Motor Co., Inc., Honda has provided students with the opportunity to experience U.S. traditions and culture, including participating in the Rose Parade, for three years beginning in 2015.
The first program focused on students from Miyagi Prefecture, the second from Iwate Prefecture, and in 2016 some 20 high school students from Fukushima Prefecture took part in the program.
Honda donated 50 million yen to Kumamoto Prefecture as relief aid following the earthquakes in 2016 plus 110 motorcycles, 127 Enepo generators powered by butane gas canisters and daily necessities. Some 40 vehicles were also loaned free of charge to areas affected by the earthquakes. Honda also opened up part of the Kumamoto Factory premises to be used as an evacuation center as part of efforts to contribute to the earliest possible relief and recovery of affected areas.
In addition, Honda donated four high pressure washers to Hokkaido and five to Iwate Prefecture, where it also loaned four mini-vehicles, as relief support after these areas were hit by Typhoon No. 10.
Contributing to society with the Honda C-card
Honda issues the Honda C-card to provide optimal service for its domestic customers. In addition to its credit card function, the Honda C-card provides a cash-back points system, membersonly preferential service and a charity (social contribution) function for donations to the Red Cross and UNICEF, all services that began in October 1995. As of March 31, 2017, some 690,000 cards have been issued.
The Honda C-card charity award ceremony was held at the Japanese Red Cross Society and Japan Committee for UNICEF in June 2017. With this charity, Honda donates* a fixed percentage of total Honda C-card use for the year to the Red Cross and UNICEF.
This was the 22nd time the donation was made, with a cumulative total of approximately 902 million yen being donated so far.
*Customers bear no burden for these donations.
Environmental education programs Nature Wagon and Dream Hands
Honda conducts the delivery-style environmental education programs Nature Wagon and Dream Hands, which are mainly offered to local elementary schools and municipalities near Honda worksites around Japan. Nature Wagon uses wood from tree thinning, stone and other natural materials, providing students with an opportunity to think about the importance of environmental conservation and to experience the fun of making things. Dream Hands refers to activities to spread the joy of making things using original Honda cardboard crafts. In FY2017, these programs were held a total of 465 times, with around 20,000 students and 4,500 volunteers taking part.
Children’s Idea Contest SDG 4 : Quality Education
The concept behind the Children’s Idea Contest is to enable children to experience the importance and joy of creation, and help them grow socially, giving shape to their ideas through the act of drawing their dreams and taking on new challenges. In 2017, the contest was held for the 15th time, with a cumulative total of 41,120 groups of children providing 10,405 works over the past seven years. In addition, since 2005, Thai children who had taken part in a similar contest in Thailand were invited, and children in Vietnam participated for the first time to join an international exchange event held at the Twin Ring Motegi racetrack in Tochigi Prefecture. Together with Japanese children, they talked about their future dreams and their country’s cultures, introduced each other’s work, and engaged in a variety of other exchanges.
Honda Children’s Idea Contest, in Thailand, Vietnam and Japan, had 520,000 applications in 2017, and the number of applicants from the start date in each country up to 2017 comes to over 3,080,000. This contest gives us access to promising next generation who can become future customers in major Asian markets, and contributes to the image improvement of the Honda brand.
Honda Beach Cleanup Project SDG 14 : Life below water
Honda is carrying out the Honda Beach Cleanup Project based on the desire to ensure that the next generation will be able to experience the joy of walking barefoot on sandy beaches.
During the cleanup activities, large pieces of garbage are picked up by hand, with smaller items then efficiently recovered by Honda’s proprietary towed Beach Cleaner*. Environmental education classes are also held for children, stressing the importance of environmental conservation.
In addition to a 90cc ATV towed beach cleaner, since 2016, Honda has introduced a Beach Monpal electric cart for use exclusively on the beach in an effort to show how fun cleanups can be to as many people as possible. The machines were a hit with everyone, from children to the elderly, for their ability to make beach cleaning so enjoyable.
Cleanup activities were held 32 times in FY 2018, the largest number in the past 7 years, with 2,013 associates from 474 Group companies taking part together with people from the local communities. In FY 2018, about 50 tons of litter was collected through this activity - the largest amount in the last 10 years. The total volume collected since 2006, when we started these activities, was about 400 tons. This activity contributes to maintaining beach environments nationwide.
* Honda’s exclusive system for the efficient collection of garbage uses an all-terrain vehicle (ATV), ideal for driving on sand, towing a cleaner unit.
Conservation activities for forest watersheds
Forests, also known as “green dams,” are places that store water over long periods of time and not only support good water flow in rivers but also create clean air. They also play a role in preventing disasters by stabilizing the ground and providing other benefits in the surrounding area. To help ensure this important water source continues into the future, Honda associates and their families from business sites around the country, along with retirees, volunteer for ongoing forest conservation activities. In FY2017, 15 conservation activities were conducted in nine locations around Japan. A total of 400 participants took part in the planting, weeding and thinning of seedlings, splitting the jobs between them.
Honda has also started activities in a forest conservation area in Chichibu, making it easy for associates to participate.
Development of new educational program for children
Honda is working for the safety of all people through a variety of initiatives. In 2016, as part of efforts to spread traffic safety education befitting people of all ages, from children to the elderly, and with the needs of the times, Honda focused on developing traffic safety materials for young children.
A new educational program for young children completed in September 2016 aimed at teaching about traffic safety combines original animation with physical exercise choreographed to make it easy for children to learn the key gestures for stop, look and wait in order to avoid traffic accidents. The program includes conversation with instructors directed toward encouraging safe behavior. Honda sought the advice of various local traffic safety instructors in developing the program and aimed to make it as easy to use on-site and effective as possible for children.