Club Services: Women's Group

Women's Group

The Women's Group enhances the lives of Members and their families through social connections, enrichment and cultural programs and charitable activities.

Founded in 1949, the Women's Group is a network and conduit for its members to forge friendships, deepen their appreciation of Japan, pick up a hobby and put their professional skills to use as volunteers.

For an annual fee of ¥7,000, Women's Group members also enjoy discounts on monthly programs, classes and tours, and on childcare while attending Women's Group-sponsored events.

Not yet a Women's Group member? Join online today, contact the Women's Group Office or visit the group's Facebook page for a taste of Women's Group life.

There are a plethora of regular events to help members meet, mingle and learn.

Monthly Programs
The Women's Group hosts engaging speakers for informative, fun luncheons or events between September and May.

Connections
Three forums for meeting and mingling:

  • Coffee Connections
    Typically held on the final Monday of the month, this relaxed gathering allows Tokyo newcomers and longtime residents to meet and bond.
  • Language Connections
    Mingle with friends and new acquaintances while practicing your language skills in a welcoming environment. Typically held on the third Tuesday of the month.
  • Cocktail Connections
    Held each second Tuesday of the month, this is a fun, informal happy hour at CHOP Bar. Women’s Group members celebrating their birthday during the month receive a free glass of wine or beer.

Contact the Women’s Group Office to arrange for free childcare for Coffee Connections or Language Connections.

Tokyo: Here & Now
A two-day orientation program held each spring and fall, Tokyo: Here & Now features explanations on dealing with healthcare and emergencies, adjusting to a new culture, appreciating Japanese customs and cuisine, and more. The perfect primer for new arrivals.


Pick up a hobby or hone a skill while making friends through the Women's Group's impressive array of enrichment programs.

Experienced instructors offer classes in a variety of areas, from art and flower arrangement to culture and cooking. There are two semesters, spring and fall, a year.

The ¥3,000 class registration fee is waived for Women's Group members.


The Women's Group organizes an annual calendar of fun and educational tours, from day trips to local cultural spots to multiday excursions farther afield.

Women's Group members enjoy advanced registration and discounted tour fees.


Through its various annual sales and fundraising efforts, the Women's Group raises millions of yen for charities each year.

Sales
The International Bazaar and Asian Home and Furnishings Sale bring together dozens of vendors and specialists for shopping extravaganzas. Net proceeds benefit charities.

Carpet Auction
Carpet dealer Eastern Carpets of Singapore hosts an evening of carpet appreciation and bidding. Net proceeds go to support the CWAJ-Women's Group non-Japanese graduate scholarship program.

Charity Drives
During the Salvation Army Charity Drive and Sanyukai Charity Drive, the Women's Group collects used clothes and other items for donation to two worthy local charities.

Donations
The Women’s Group supports a number of Japan-based charities that often do not have significant fundraising resources or government support. Occasionally, funds are used for international disaster relief efforts.

Donations of ¥8.8 million were approved in fiscal 2017. The donation recipients and approved funds are listed below:

A Dream A Day in Tokyo
Provides support for children with incurable diseases and their families: ¥500,000

Asian Rural Institute
Facilitates the self-development of rural people from the developing world: ¥1 million

College Women's Association of Japan
Supports higher education and nurtures future leaders: ¥2 million

Family House
Provides temporary housing for families of children with cancer and other serious illnesses: ¥1 million

HELP Women’s Shelter
Provides refuge, counseling and legal services to victims of exploitation and abuse: ¥1 million

Japan Association for UNHCR
Provides essentials like shelter, water, health and education to refugees and asylum-seekers: ¥200,000

Sanyukai
Provides various medical, food, clothing, hospice and other services to the homeless in Tokyo: ¥2 million

Second Harvest Japan
Japan's largest food bank that works to improve food security: ¥1 million


The Women's Group board oversees the activities of the organization and is elected each year.

President
Chalice Markowitz

Vice President
Karen Thomas

Director at Large
Gabriela Mandrea

Director of Administration
Michele Wyes

Director of Charities
Tomomi Fujita

Director of Communications
Clarissa Dimacali

Director of Community Events
Debra Wetherell

Director of Finance
Deborah Farrar

Director of Membership
Cathie Driscoll

Director of Monthly Programs
Shamim Daniels

Director of Programs for Enrichment Programs
Reiko Saito

Director of Programs for Fundraising/Carpet Auction Chair
Christa Wallington

Director of Programs for Fundraising/International Bazaar & Asian Home Furnishings Sale Chair
Michelle Blue

Directors of Programs for Tokyo: Here & Now/Tokyo: Here & Now Co-Chairs
Paula Marcy & Heidi Regent

Directors of Programs for Tours/Tours Co-Chairs
Alaine Lee & Kazuko Morio