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Grants to USA and Japan Nonprofits for Collaborative K-12 Educational Programs

Pre-College Education Grant


GrantWatch ID#

Funding Source
Array ( )

Geographic Focus

Important Dates
LOI Date: 06/30/23
Deadline: 08/10/23 Save

Grant Description
Grants to USA and Japan nonprofit organizations for educational projects that enable K-12 youth to learn about each other’s culture, country, and society. Applicants must submit a letter of inquiry prior to submitting a full application. Funding is for pre-college educational projects and programs that train teachers, work directly with students, connect schools in the two countries, produce curriculum materials, and improve language instruction.

The United States-Japan Foundation supports innovative education projects that help young Americans and Japanese learn about each other’s society, culture, and country as well as learn to work together on issues of common concern. The Foundation focuses on K-12 education and throughout its history has been at the forefront of supporting teacher professional development projects that train US teachers to teach about Japan and Japanese teachers to teach about the United States. In addition, the Foundation funds projects that work directly with students, that develop top quality curriculum materials on America or Japan for educational audiences in the other country, that connect schools and classrooms in the US and Japan, and that develop and improve instruction in Japanese language.

The Foundation seeks to respond to needs at the pre-college level as identified by experts in US-Japan education and practitioners in the field. We are open to diverse methodologies for engaging teachers and students in the study of Japan and the United States that range from history, art, and music to science and society (please see our recent grants section for examples of projects we have funded). The Foundation also proactively leads efforts to develop educational programs and projects when a significant need is discerned.

USJF seeks to support programs that:

  • Build human networks among teachers on both sides of the Pacific with a mutual interest in teaching and learning about Japan, the US, and US-Japan relations, particularly in the fields of social studies, science, and Japanese language instruction (support for language instruction is currently limited to Japanese-language programs in the United States)
  • Invest in programs in regions in both countries that have been underserved in terms of exposure to and resources for learning about the other country
  • Take advantage of new technology to bring Japanese and American teachers and students together
  • Enlist the expertise residing at institutions of higher learning and other NGOs in support of US-Japan studies programs at the elementary, middle and high school levels in both countries
  • Present the products of research and policy studies and media programs on US-Japan issues to an audience of pre-college students and their teachers, with the aim of fostering mutual learning and understanding among the young people who will be the future leaders in both countries, forced to come to terms with making policy and responding to the changing nature of the US-Japan relationship
  • Enhance, expand and preserve the study of the Japanese language at the pre-college level in the United States through teacher professional development opportunities, national standards, and performance assessments
  • Develop curricula and other products focused on Japan and/or the United States that are immediately relevant to and useful in meeting the demands faced by teachers at the pre-college level
  • Continue to support and enhance the US-Japan knowledge of the vast network of teachers and students who have been exposed to US-Japan studies over the years through USJF-sponsored programs.

Proposed projects should seek to incorporate one or more of these elements in a way that is particularly suited to the need(s) in pre-college education they seek to address. However, the above guidelines should not be seen as a deterrent to innovative new proposals and concepts. 


Additional Eligibility Criteria
Grants can only be made to organizations holding non-profit status.

Foundation grants may not be used for lobbying or to support election to public offices. The Foundation does not award grants as contributions to capital campaigns, endowment funds, deficit operations or for the construction or maintenance of buildings or other physical premises.

The Foundation does not make grants to individuals, nor for profit organizations.

Pre-Application Information
- June 30: Suggested submission date for Letters of Inquiry. Please note that in spite of this deadline, submission should be as early as possible for review. Please attach the Letter of Inquiry “Cover Sheet” along with your LOI.
- July 1-15: Letters of Inquiry will be reviewed and responses sent via email
- August 10: Deadline for receipt of Full Proposal (only invited Full Proposals will be considered)
- August 10 – September: Internal / External review of Full Proposals
- October: USJF Board of Trustees meet to review Full Proposals, make funding decisions
- November: Funding decisions announced

Applicants are encouraged to contact the staff of the Foundation early on in the proposal development process for feedback and guidance.

As communicated in the December 2021 announcement, there will no longer be a Spring cycle.

Letters of Inquiry may be written in either Japanese or English.

The final proposal must be written in English.

Application process:

Proposal guidelines:


Term of Contract
The Foundation only makes grants on an annual basis. Proposals can indicate an interest in multi-year funding, but should focus on one year at a time. Approved projects that initially indicated an interest in multi-year support would need to submit renewal proposals for future support.

Contact Information
Submit LOI Cover Sheet and Letter of Inquiry:

For more information regarding the Pre-college Education Grant Programs at the United States-Japan Foundation, please contact the funding source at the above email address or via phone at (212) 481-8753.


Tel: (03) 3586-0541

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