Arigatou International’s history began in 1990, when the leader of the Japanese Buddhist organization Myochikai, Rev. Takeyasu Miyamoto, established the Arigatou Foundation.
Building upon his many years of work to contribute to world peace, he gave Arigatou the mission of creating a better environment for children, where they can all grow up safe and sound physically, mentally and spiritually. Beginning with providing humanitarian and educational assistance for suffering children around the world, Arigatou has over the years expanded its work significantly by promoting interfaith cooperation for children, working with United Nations agencies, NGOs, grassroots child rights workers, and children themselves. Here are a few of the major milestones in the Arigatou story since then.
Arigatou Foundation established by Rev. Takeyasu Miyamoto, Leader of Myochikai, with the mission of creating a better environment for children.
1990 ~ Present
Arigatou has contributed to projects of UNICEF, UNHCR, Médecins Sans Frontières, Red Cross/Crescent Societies, and other such organizations to provide humanitarian aid, emergency assistance, educational support, and child protection in 52 countries.
At the invitation of the Arigatou Foundation, 294 participants representing 7 major religions, from 33 countries and regions, gather in Tokyo to inaugurate the Global Network of Religions for Children (GNRC).
Conference of Children for the Coming Generation (CCG) held in Chiba, Japan, bringing together 213 children from 40 countries and regions to discuss their own future. CCG Message is created and sent to world leaders.
Rev. Takeyasu Miyamoto, President of the Arigatou Foundation, addresses the United Nations General Assembly during the Special Session on Children, speaking on behalf of the Global Network of Religions for Children (GNRC).
Children’s Conference in New York held as official side event of the Special Session on Children, with 44 children from 17 countries, followed by GNRC Special Session Follow-up Conference at Maryknoll, New York, with 95 participants from 33 countries, including 11 children.
Geneva Office established.
Formally recognized as a member of the NGO Group for the Convention on the Rights of the Child at its General Assembly held in Geneva.
Granted special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.
GNRC Second Forum held in Geneva, Switzerland in May 2004, bringing together 359 people, including 38 children and young people, from 68 countries and 7 major religions.
Arigatou establishes Interfaith Council on Ethics Education for Children, launching its second global initiative after the GNRC, Ethics Education for Children.
GNRC Third Forum held in Hiroshima, Japan, with 478 religious leaders and others from 63 countries and 8 world religions, including 42 children and young people. Also present were top United Nations officials, including Ms. Asha-Rose Migiro, UN Deputy Secretary General, and Ms. Ann Veneman, Executive Director of UNICEF.
At GNRC Third Forum, Arigatou, together with UNICEF and UNESCO, formally launches Learning to Live Together: An Intercultural and Interfaith Programme for Ethics Education.
At GNRC Third Forum, Arigatou proposes the World Day of Prayer and Action for Children, and launches its third global initiative, Prayer and Action for Children.
First World Day of Prayer and Action for Children celebrated on November 20.
New York office established.
GNRC Fourth Forum held in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, bringing together 470 participants from 64 countries, including President Jakaya M. Kikwete of Tanzania.
Name changed to Arigatou International. Rev. Keishi Miyamoto becomes President of Arigatou International.
Nairobi office established. GNRC Secretariat relocated from Tokyo to Nairobi.
Rev. Takeyasu Miyamoto, founder of Arigatou International, passes away.
GNRC Fifth Forum held in Panama City, bringing together 526 people from 70 countries, and adopting the Panama Declaration of Ending Violence Against Children, including the 10 Panama Commitments to End Violence against Children.
Faith and Children’s Rights: A Multi-religious Study on the Convention on the Rights of the Child carried out and published, to mark the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the CRC in 2019.
2017 ~ 2019
To fulfill the Panama Commitments to end violence against children, 122 follow-up programs, activities and events held in 38 countries by 63 organizations.