Rohan D’Souza wins Japanese Speech Contest in America
Mangalorean’s are game changers in the world. Brilliant, Bajpe boy Rohan D’Souza wins the Grand Prize at 2019 Bluegrass Area Japanese Speech Contest held at Atherton High School, Louisville, Kentucky on February 24th. This prestigious award was presented by Honorable Itsuroh Abe, Consulate-General of Japan to Rohan D’Souza. The Japan America Society of Kentucky honored Rohan with a certificate and rewarded a free round trip, airline ticket from United Airlines for his sensational speech.
Established in 1987, the Japan/America Society of Kentucky (JASK) is a nonprofit, non-political membership organization dedicated to promoting a better understanding of the business, cultural and social practices and customs of Japan and Kentucky.
In olden days there was a saying, it takes an entire village to raise a child. Interestingly in today’s world it takes culture, diversity, languages, humanity and spirituality to raise a child.
Rohan D’Souza shared his subject, “Experiences from Studying Japanese” at the speech contest. Rohan’s life experiences as a child, struggling to sail smoothly in a rough storm left the audience with a mesmerizing insight into this young man’s existential struggle.
Synopsis of Rohan’s Japanese speech: “I want to share a story of how studying Japanese helped me. I moved to the US from India when I was 4 and was thrown off by America’s differences. When I entered school I was teased and felt I had to change myself to fit in. Once I entered 7th grade I decided to learn Japanese as my foreign language. It was nostalgic because I had grown up going to the library to read manga with my older brother. In Japanese class, I met people like me. They were interested in the same things and also enjoyed learning and talking about Japan. As I continued my study, I felt a connection between the culture I was learning about and the Indian culture I had grown up in. Ultimately, through learning Japanese, I was able to learn about myself and reconnect with my Indian culture”.
Turning obstacles into opportunities has been the motto of Rohan. This incredible, intelligent and inspiring Rohan is the son of Harold and Dancy D’Souza, native of Bajpe, Mangalore. Harold D’Souza says; “Survivors smiling does not mean the trauma never existed. It means the trauma no more controls our lives. As a child Rohan gave me the power, passion and purpose to transform our lives from surviving to thriving. Never be scared what the child speaks but be scared what the child sees or hears”.
Age is just a number. Making a mistake is not a mistake, making no mistake is a big mistake, repeating a mistake is a mistake. Parents engage, encourage, educate and empower your kids to live their dreams.