Moving to new city or country can be an exhilarating, rewarding experience. People will have the opportunity to explore new places and enjoy new lifestyle. However, one of the hardest parts of moving to a new city can be making new friends especially in Japan. It is more difficult to make friends when people are older and have their own family. Many Japanese families seem to be busy with their own schedule and they are less likely to open themselves up to anybody due to social pressures and norms.
Nature workshop is one of the methods used by some women groups in Yokohama to reconnect both Japanese and international families living in the same area. Children and their parents were invited to play outside and experience the nearby nature. The workshops were held in local urban parks and conducted in both English and Japanese. Loose materials were used to enhance children's play and promote parents participation. After the session, the participants were given the chance to have picnic and enjoy lunch with other families. Some participants exchanged their numbers after realizing that they live in the same neighborhood. During lunch time, the participants were asked to provide feedback on the workshops. Feedback from the participants indicated high demands for such programs and more opportunities to connect with local people. The feedback also highlighted the demands to overcome people's loneliness in a city. (21/07)