3rd Annual Arnold Maeda Manzanar Pilgrimage Grant Application Period Now Open

The following is a press release from the the Venice Japanese American Memorial Monument (VJAMM) Committee and the Manzanar Committee

Applications due January 6, 2023.

LOS ANGELES — The Venice Japanese American Memorial Monument (VJAMM) Committee and the Manzanar Committee have announced the Third Annual Arnold Maeda Manzanar Pilgrimage Grant for 2023.

Maeda, who passed on September 10, 2020, at the age of 94, inspired the Venice Japanese American Memorial Monument Committee on which he served as a charter member. Maeda proved to be a willing and articulate public speaker, and invaluable fundraiser. VJAMM dedicated the Venice Japanese American Memorial Monument on April 27, 2017, on the northwest corner of Venice and Lincoln Boulevards, in Venice, California. This marks the spot where some 1,000 persons of Japanese ancestry, forcibly removed from Venice, Santa Monica, and Malibu, lined up with only what they could carry, for their day-long bus ride to the American concentration camp at Manzanar.

Maeda remembered that day in his quote engraved on the monument:

“Instead of being worried about where we were going, I was obsessed with the fact that I had parted with my constant companion, my pet dog, Boy. For a fifteen-year old, that was unforgettably traumatic,” he said.

Despite that trauma of being forcibly uprooted from Santa Monica, and his family’s loss of their home and nursery business, Maeda distinguished himself at Manzanar. He participated in music and drama productions, lifted weights, worked as a kitchen helper and a hospital orderly, and became President of his Senior class of 1944 at Manzanar High School. After World War II, Maeda began to volunteer with the Manzanar Reunion Committee, the Santa Monica Nikkei Hall, and in 2010, with the Venice Japanese American Memorial Monument Committee.

Grant applicants will get to know Maeda by finding his many interviews and articles online, and will describe his life and legacy in an essay, short story, or poetry.

Applicants will address three or more areas of reflection: who Maeda was and how he became a role model for the Japanese American community; how Maeda’s legacy has influenced the applicant; how the applicant will apply the lessons learned from Maeda to his/her life today; how Maeda’s life in the American concentration camp at Manzanar compares/contrasts with the student’s life today; how collaboration and service to others have affected the applicant’s life; how and why working with the Manzanar Committee on the 2023 Manzanar Pilgrimage will help the applicant better understand Maeda’s life and legacy.

Each recipient of the 2023 Arnold Maeda Manzanar Pilgrimage Grant will receive a stipend of $500.00 for their attendance at planning meetings, and for their participation in the Manzanar Pilgrimage weekend of April 28 – 30, 2023.

The deadline for application submissions is January 6, 2023. All applicants will be notified of the judging results by the end of January, 2023.

To read the winning essays of previous Arnold Maeda Manzanar Pilgrimage Grant recipients, Leslie Aguilar (2021), Charlene Tonai Din and Terumi Tanisha Garcia (2022), please visit the VJAMM web site at https://venicejamm.org

To download the 2023 Information Packet and Application Form go to:

Questions may be e-mailed to: am-grant@manzanarcommittee.org


LEAD PHOTO: From left: Norman Toyoshige Maeda, Sasami Takeda Maeda, Arnold Tadao Maeda. Photo courtesy: Maeda Family.

The Manzanar Committee’s Official web site is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. You may copy, distribute and/or transmit any story or audio content published on this site under the terms of this license, but only if proper attribution is indicated. The full name of the author and a link back to the original article on this site are required. Photographs, graphic images, and other content not specified are subject to additional restrictions. Additional information is available at: Manzanar Committee Official web site – Licensing and Copyright Information.

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