Philanthropic Initiatives in
Instead of surrounding themselves with concrete walls, Honda factories throughout Japan create community forests, planting local tree species in their precincts and allowing them to grow naturally. Implemented in 1976, this initiative is designed to revive and preserve local ecosystems, and achieve a harmonious balance of the facilities with nature.
Hamamatsu Factory has added a new local communication program to its Community Forest initiatives, offering local residents the opportunity to experience nature and better understand the importance of environmental protection. Environmental learning areas have been created to encourage visiting children to observe and explore nature and make independent discoveries.
In accordance with the emphasis on initiative, equality and trust that emerges from our basic principle of respect for the individual, Honda believes that human beings are born to think, create and express their individuality freely, thus realizing their hopes and dreams. We strive to attract individuals who share this belief and who will respect each other's individuality. We seek to foster an atmosphere of mutual trust and fairness in which our associates are able to realize their potential and share in the joy of creating new value for society.
Like Honda's facilities, special affiliates Honda Sun Co., Ltd., Honda R&D Sun Co., Ltd., and Kibounosato Honda Co., Ltd. seek proactively to create employment for individuals with disabilities.
An event that conveys the joy of dreaming and the delight of creating, the Children's Idea Contest asks entrants to draw a picture of something they imagine would be really cool and send it to Honda. In FY2009, for the seventh such contest, 5,549 entries were received from elementary school children all over Japan. A panel of judges selected the top entries, which were created by 32 groups of students (39 children). The children were invited to make models of their ideas and present them for final review. After completing their projects through a process of trial and error, the children earnestly presented their projects before a large audience.
The Society of Automotive Engineers of Japan (JSAE) seeks to foster tomorrow's engineering talent through the Student Formula SAE Competition of Japan, in which teams of college students spend a year designing and building their own scaled-down formula race cars. Judging criteria include not only vehicle performance but also planning, costing and presentation. In addition to sponsoring the program, Honda offers Student Formula Challenge Seminars taught by members of the Honda Meister Klub, a volunteer group of retired Honda engineers. Exploring such practical car-making skills as welding, processing, and tuning engines and suspensions, seminar participants experience the challenges, excitement and joy of making things.
The Honda Team-Based Program is a hands-on and experiential live-in research study program for junior and senior high school students at Twin Ring Motegi, in which Honda's experience and expertise in business is applied in support of education. The two-night, three-day program focuses on stimulating the students' imagination and creativity. On the first day, the children explore each of the facilities at Twin Ring Motegi and experience some educational adventure. Then they break into teams of about ten and choose a research topic. On the second day, the teams have free run of the facilities to gather information based on their topics. The teams discuss the observations and discoveries gleaned through these experiences and come up with a proposal for a future creation. On the third day, the teams use a projector and microphone to present their materials to the entire group. Through this process, participants have a chance to develop their imagination and creativity in just three days.
We want children to experience the fun and excitement of making things with their own hands. That's why Honda started offering the Dream Hands program at community centers and event spaces in areas in Japan where Honda facilities are located. Dream Hands is an introductory handicraft program combining original Honda cardboard crafts and other simple materials. The program gives kids firsthand experience of the fun of making things. Current and retired Honda associates volunteer their time to assist and guide the children. Honda hopes that participation in this program will help children discover the joy of making things.
Trees, grass, flowers, seawater, river rocks— everywhere we turn, nature offers us new and wonderful experiences. By working with natural materials, children discover these wonders and learn to think for themselves about nature. To encourage these explorations, Honda created the Nature Wagon, an environmental education program on wheels. A Honda van filled with natural objects from the ocean and the forest, the Nature Wagon travels to elementary schools, community centers and other places kids gather in Japan, bringing nature to the city. Retired Honda associates staff the program, talking with the children about the environment and encouraging them to explore it independently. They offer talks about the workings of nature and the importance of environmental conservation, and teach handicrafts, giving children the chance to create things with natural materials.
Honda's Beach Cleaner was designed to fulfill a dream of preserving pristine beaches for future generations. Applying its own innovative technology, Honda engineers worked through a process of trial and error to create the towable Beach Cleaner. Paired with a Honda ATV, the Beach Cleaner was ready to go to work in 2006. A volunteer team of current and retired Honda associates formed a caravan that visits beaches throughout Japan at the request of local municipalities, and in FY2009 they beautified 14 beaches.
In FY2008 Honda Group companies started to take part in the caravan.
The fresh water we need finds its sources in alpine forests, which collect and retain water over long periods of time before releasing it to us via rivers. These forest watersheds preserve the water we drink and the air we breathe. They also stabilize the ground, helping prevent natural disasters. To help preserve these precious watersheds for future generations, current and retired Honda associates throughout Japan are hard at work on forest conservation projects.
For the purpose of preserving flora and fauna confirmed to exist at Honda's new test course project site in Sakura City and adjacent areas, a committee was established to investigate the areas and make suggestions on the environmental policies to the local government and Honda.