Intercultural Communication Center(ICC)Waseda University

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ICC Event Planner’s Report: Let’s Learn to Write Arabic Calligraphy!

N.M. (Student Staff Leader)

Last month, on June 25th, ICC held an event called, “Let’s Learn to Write Arabic Calligraphy!” As the title already says, the main part of the event was Arabic calligraphy workshop. There were two people who mainly organized the event, me and another SSL. For me personally, I wanted to do this event because I want to introduce both Islamic and Arab culture. I found Arabic calligraphy as a good media to do that because Arabic calligraphy is a form of art which in my opinion, art tells a lot about a country’s culture. Moreover, I thought this is a nice event especially for people who simply just want to experience writing in Arabic using calligraphy style……

Preparation

To conduct such event, the first problem that we encountered was who we should invite as the instructor. We gathered information and were surprised to find out about Arabic Calligraphy Association. I did not know that people in Japan has a keen interest on Arabic calligraphy to the point that there is an association about it! It was beyond my expectation but I was delighted to stumble upon it and decided to ask for their cooperation to support the event. Thankfully, the Secretary General of the association, Mr. Yamaoka Koichi, kindly agreed to be the guest of our event!
Just like any other events hold by ICC, we prepared a lot of things such as posters, flyers, the venue etc. When we finalized the design of the poster and the website page for the event, we intended to publish both around the same time, but due to the abundant number of events during that time, we decided to publish the website first then print and distribute the poster and flyers later. However to my surprise, during the first few weeks after we published the website, there were already quite a lot of people who registered themselves. The sincere support that people gave to the event was the source of our strength. We got even more motivated to make sure the event goes well and nobody is disappointed.

D-Day

After weeks of preparation, finally the day comes! Even though I could not participate in setting up the venue, thanks to good communication and active cooperation from our team, especially the full time staff, we were able to prepare the event pretty smoothly. There were several things that happened but thankfully, we were able to solve those problems. Through this event, I learned a lot about the importance of imagining the worst scenarios before the day of the event so that things can still go under our control.
Done with the preparation, now it’s waiting time! I was nervous but at the same time so excited to meet the people who registered to our event in person, which in my personal opinion, is one of the best parts of organizing an event. After a while, people came one by one. On the registration desk, we gave out a special gift; a paper with the participant’s name written in Arabic calligraphy by Mr. Yamaoka himself. Everyone was so surprised and happy.

 

Mr. Yamaoka started the event with a short presentation about Arabic calligraphy. Then, the fun session starts; Arabic calligraphy workshop! During the workshop, Mr. Yamaoka was assisted by his students who kindly came to our event. The event went on with the sound of people squeaking after making a mistake and laughing.

 

Last but not least

The event ended successfully despite several obstacles. I felt happy as I saw people leaving with a smile on their face. There were a lot of things that I learned from this event and also a lot of things to improve. For next semester, I hope that I can organize another event that hopefully, put a smile on people’s face.

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