In middle school, Anna found her passion in gender equality. She sought to expand her knowledge, learned about intersectional feminism and privilege, and decided to use the resources she has to empower others. Combining her passions in tinkering, education, and feminism, she began a project called Aidesign where she creates unconventionally-designed educational tools to empower socioeconomically disadvantaged students. Ultimately, she hopes to build a world in which anyone, regardless of their identity or status, is able to achieve their dreams through a high quality education.
In the ninth grade, Astrid was introduced to human trafficking through a guest speaker at her school in Singapore. After moving to Japan, she felt that she needed an outlet in order to do something about the issue. Needless to say, IMPACT became that outlet. Together with fellow activist Sylvan Lebrun, Astrid created the Listen to Freedom project. In this project, the pair wrote and composed five songs with the goal of selling them in an album that would raise both awareness and funds for anti-human trafficking efforts. Currently, they continue to sell the album at school events, and hope to expand the scope of their project.
Ever since the start of High school, Gabriel Chi had an interest in fashion. However, it was not until the 10th grade, where he and fellow student Tohma Kobayashi partnered to create their fashion brand, TOKYOUTH. TOKYOUTH represents the various subcultures in Japan, ranging from music to art, expressing such diversity through their clothing. Ultimately, Gabriel hopes to further branch out in the field of fashion, further progressing in the different aspects of fashion and business, using TOKYOUTH as a valuable experience to guide him into his future.
Millie became very passionate about community service when she was in fourth grade. In her class, she began a classroom “company” called Michlo with her friend. The simplicity of Michlo helped unify the class towards a common goal of making the community better, and gave joy to everyone involved. This experience led her to volunteer at a foster home by teaching English, and at that home, she learned about the hardships the children face when they leave foster homes at the age of 18. Millie started the SUDACHI Project in her school community to help the children with their financial burden by donating furniture and home appliances. Through this project, she is working on becoming a bridge between the expatriate and local Japanese communities, and hopes to be a catalyst for high school students to broaden their perspectives and make a better community.
Anybody can use fashion as a mode of expression, yet depending on what and how you wear an article of clothing, what you represent can have a different meaning. These subtleties are one of the many reasons Tohma Kobayashi loves fashion, like when he wears wide pants and pin roll the cuffs, to achieve a slimmer silhouette and a cleaner look. Utilizing these subtleties, Tohma realized that he could use clothes as a way to articulate his personality. This realization became the catalyst for Tohma and his partner Gabriel Chi to create Tokyouth, a clothing brand that would encapsulate and represent their values and identities through our designs.