A&FRC course helps with language barrier

Yokota Air Base, Japan --

Having a language barrier can be challenging for service members while being stationed in a foreign country. Fortunately, Yokota’s Airman and Family Readiness Center is here to help its members overcome this barrier by creating the Survival Japanese Course.

The six-day course covers a multitude of useful words and expressions to use at local restaurants, stores, train stations and in other various locations throughout Japan. The course takes place every Tuesday from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

“I want to help people from other countries learn our culture and how to properly interact with us,” said Kenny Fukuoka, Survival Japanese Course instructor. “It’s very important for us, Japanese and foreigners, to understand each other when we come together, and I hope this class will help us better interact.”

On the first day of class, attendees will learn how to greet people and what to say when calling or visiting someone. The class instructor will cover how to order food and pay at a restaurant on the second and third day. Participants will learn words to say when shopping on the fourth day. Then, on the fifth and sixth day people will learn directions and how to ask about train stations.

“I took the course because I have been in Japan several times and have never had the opportunity to learn the language properly, and this course helped me learn more conversational phrases,” said Scott Murphy, course participant. “It’s important for us to learn the language of our host country while we are here. What I learned here will definitely help me interact with Japanese people while I am traveling around this country.”

There will be two more courses offered this year; the first session is from Aug. 29 to Oct. 10, and the second goes from Oct. 31 to Dec. 5. Contact the A&FRC at 225-8725 to sign up or receive more information.