Prefectural Advisors (PAs) are appointed in each prefecture and designated city throughout Japan. The PA role is to provide support to JET participants and contracting organizations (COs), as well as useful information to JET participants about everyday life in Japan.
In Saga Prefecture we have three PAs:
- CIR PA – Works for the Saga Prefectural Government International Affairs Division and the PA role is built into their CIR role. They are PA from August-July
- ALT PA – A Prefectural ALT who volunteers to take on the role and continues to work as an ALT as well as a PA. They are PA from April-March
- Japanese PA – Works for the Saga Prefectural Government International Affairs Division, usually the supervisor of the CIR PA.
Current Saga Prefectural Advisors
Maarten – CIR PA
Maarten is from the Zoetermeer, the Netherlands, and currently works at the Saga Prefectural Office. He proclaims to have a great love for the outdoors, escpecially the sea, but in fact he spends most weekday nights at home looking for cool music or bingewatching Netflix. On weekends, he likes to go to local events, or head out to bustling Fukuoka. Majoring in Japanese has turned him into much more of a geek than he likes to admit. However, thanks to his studies, he’s now quite capable in Japanese and is always happy to help people out, be it about language or not.
Ellisa – ALT PA
Climbing the spiraling corporate ladder of success, Ellisa is doing Dolly Parton proud working 9-5 (actual contract hours may differ). From the emerald city of Seattle, USA, Ellisa is dedicated to a life of service and prestige. Her main interests include cooking, going to the beach, and spending time with friends. These days you can catch her on the streets of Imari inspiring the children, or as she calls them, the leaders of tomorrow. As an Aries, she identifies most closely with the Ton Ten Ton float Aramikoshi out of the two floats. As Prefectural Advisor, Ellisa hopes to be a help to anyone who needs it and a source of good advice, or at the very least, serve as a grave warning.
Profile coming soon!
Considerations when using the PA System
- Mediation: Legally, PAs cannot become involved in disputes or issues between JETs and their contracting organizations. A JET should first speak directly to their CO before contacting a PA about a work-related issue. PAs may be contacted for advice if both the JET and their CO agree that discussion with a PA would benefit the situation. When deemed necessary by all parties, the CIR PA and J PA can be requested to interpret and mediate discussions between JETs and their COs from a neutral standpoint.
- Counseling: Of course your PAs will do their best to support you in your life in Japan and are very open to listening to the worries and concerns of JETs and offering advice. However, please understand that they are not professional counselors, and as such cannot offer direct mental health support.
JET participants who would like to receive counseling have a number of options, including counseling subsidies from CLAIR and the JET online counseling system. Look here or more information on these options and more.
Any information PAs are told by JETs is kept confidential between PAs, who may consult with each other about an incident unless otherwise specified by the JET. If the JET wishes to keep their identity secret, the PAs may discuss the incident without disclosing personal details. PAs reserve the right to contact emergency services, etc., in the event there is cause to believe a JET will do harm to themselves or to someone else, or is doing something illegal.
To reach a PA please call 0952-25-7328. You can also email the CIR PA.
(**PA contact information is for use by incoming, current, and former Saga JETs only. Contact from unaffiliated bodies will be deleted.)
CIR PA office hours are Monday – Friday 8:30-4:30 and ALT PA office hours are Mondays 9:00-4:30.
Alternatively, if you have a question that you think could benefit other JETs too, you could submit it here (anonymously) and the answer will be made available online.