Hiroshima Prefecture was more than happy to have local international kids, their parents and teachers march in the Flower Festival parade to promote its Peace Arch week of events. But when it comes to actually providing information to the local international community and visitors from abroad, it has completely failed.
With the annual A-bomb commemorations coming up, I wondered what was happening with the Peace Arch events as I hadn’t heard anything since the news that pop singer Avril Levigne had pulled out of one of the concerts. I headed to the website where I found out that the week of peace related events begins tomorrow, July 27. The Japanese site has a stream of news updates and information on the various events being held throughout the week.
Heading over to the English site, I found that the news feed has not been updated once since the site launched. They did a nice job of putting the brochure (PDF) for the event in English, a brochure which heavily features the smiling faces of people of various origin holding onto the pink McDonalds logo mark in places around the prefecture and beyond.
The Peace Arch catchphrase, the pamphlet tells us, is “The heart reaches everywhere. Feelings communicate everywhere.” Hard to disagree with such sentiments, but strong though the heart may be, it will have a tough time reaching everywhere if no one knows about it.