During 2004-05, we enjoyed ten programs. Highlights of the year included a special discussion on, “Children in War.” We had a fellowship luncheon to attract new members, including a glimpse into the history and culture of our newest member association, Sri Lanka. Our Program Chair, Jerilyn Meripol gave a special presentation on “Self-Discovery through Creative Writing,” drawing on many examples within Japanese fiction. A visiting scholar at Northwestern University spoke about the Chettiars, a traditional community in Tamil Nadu, India. An art historian brought her collection of tiny 3-inch long shoes, called “lotus shoes,” and told us about foot binding in China.
We contributed to two ongoing philanthropies: the scholarship fund at Oglala Lakota College on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota and the Jyoti Children’s Development Fund which provides tuition and board for a hearing-impaired girl in Kanpur, India. After the tsunami disaster, individual members of the Chicago Chapter raised over $600 for the PPSEAWA-USA Relief Fund.
There are 35 members in the Chicago chapter. Our current officers are: President: Anita Yamada, 1st VP: Akari Yamada, 2nd VP: Jerilyn Meripol, Corresponding Secretary: Royal Buscombe, Recording Secretary: Diane Singh, Treasurer: Martha Mackin, and Chapter Representative: Teresa Hintzke.