Okinawa Hands On NPO Group Bringing Language and Culture to Radio

IMG_0181A young group of Okinawans, directed by Mr. “Tuba Kachin” Agena, have been creating and working hard in Okinawa to promote Okinawan culture, language and history through the airwaves in Uchinaa.  “Okinawa Hands On” is a non-profit organization that first started out to give English language support to students that needed to study more for school or testing in Okinawa’s middle and high schools.  They have now grown to focus on the need to also educate the students in Okinawan language, culture and history while incorporating English and having the students get involved in radio program hosts and “kami shibai” or story plays.

The Ukwanshin tour met up with the leaders and some students, and we were also lucky to be hosted by them for a day with a Shimakutuba Tour.  This was one of our highlights to actually hear our native language being used live and for education.

Hands On hosts various radio programs such as Shimakutuba news and talk on FM Yomitan, FM Yambaru, FM Nirai, and a comparative cultural talk show on “The Roots”.  The organization is supported by sponsors and is always looking for help.  If you would like to support this great work please let us know.

Here is the schedule of radio programs.  If you would like to watch live, adjust the time and remember that we are 5 hours ahead, one day back.  You can also access their recorded programs if you can’t make the times.

Tuesday:10am-10:50 Yanbaru shimakutuba news at FM Yanbaru(nago:FM77.6Mhz)
(radio personalities are Paru”,Seibin shinsii, Jinkichi shinsii and Naoko shinsii)
※paru” is haru but nago area, some uchina-guchi sounds are changed.
ex:Hiijaa(goat in uchina-guchi)→Piijaa. Hago-san(dirty in uchina-guchi)→Pago-san.

Tuesday:6pm-7pm Chimuganasa shimakutuba news at FM Nirai(chatan:FM79.2Mhz)
(radio personalities are taruga-ni Kishimoto , Nakamura nu Yocchan ba-chan and Fumiko shinsii)

Thursday:2pm-2:45pm Yuntanza shimakutuba news at FM Yomitan (Yomitan:FM78.6Mhz)
2:45-2:55pm Sadako Tamaki’s Iyasassa Kurashiki kara (coordinate okinawan folk singer)
(radio personalities are Haru”, and Yoshiko sinshii or Sei-san or Yomitan’s guest)

Friday:4pm-5pm The roots at FM Nirai(chatan:FM79.2Mhz)
(radio personalities are Maki Nakamura, Tuba Kacchin(Mr.Red Agena) and kathryn)
※tuba kacchin is Mr.Agena’s grand’pa’s nick name.
Maki-san exprain in Japanese, Mr.Agena using uchina-guchi, and Kathryn speaks in English.