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"Shine Your Life
For Tomorrow"
Book of Speeches

Chiran Speech Contest
High School Division

High school students have participated in the Chiran Speech Contest since its beginning in 1990. Over 1,200 students entered the contest in 2004. Students apply from all over Japan, but about ninety percent of the entrants live in Kagoshima Prefecture, where Chiran Town is located.

The Japanese Army used Chiran Air Base for planes departing to make kamikaze attacks on Allied ships near Okinawa. The residents of Chiran strongly feel they must work toward realization of a society that loves peace and that respects each and every life. Chiran Town established an annual speech contest with this goal in mind.

High school students submit draft speeches on topics related to the preciousness of life and the importance of peace. A selection committee then reviews the speeches to select four students who will travel to Chiran Town with all expenses paid in order to give their speeches on August 15, the date of Japan's surrender in World War II. The first-prize winner in the high school division receives a prize of 200 thousand yen (US$1,800). The second-prize and two third-prize winners receive 150 thousand yen and 100 thousand yen, respectively. Each winner also gets a certificate of commendation and a bronze trophy.

This web site presents English translations of selected winning speeches from prior years: