Association of Foreign Wives of Japanese

Supporting Women since 1969

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With nearly 500 members in Japan and around the world, AFWJ inspires women from all walks of life who are in an intercultural relationship with a Japanese partner to discover her true potential though friendship, networking, support and fun!

In 1969, a foreign woman married to a Japanese, Joan Itoh, was looking for other foreign wives of Japanese. A JapanTimes newspaper columnist, Jean Pearce, became instrumental in the creation of AFWJ when she mentioned two separate times in her column about the first get together on September 7, 1969 at the Tokyo American Club. Her third column announced that the meeting was a success.

From the first meeting to the present day, AFWJ has been a source of friendship and support for its members. The Association of Foreign Wives of Japanese currently has almost 500 members from more than 50 countries. Members are located in National Districts throughout Japan and Overseas. There are active members in the following Districts: Hokkaido, Tohoku, Kanto/Koshinetsu, Chubu-Tokai & Hokuriku, Kansai & Chugoku, Shikoku, Kyushu & Okinawa, and Overseas. Throughout the year, all Districts hold a variety of activities. Some National Districts hold meetings in Local Chapters.

You can find an article in the Japan Times about our 50th Anniversary Celebration here.

A letter from the AFWJ President


Thank you for checking out the AFWJ website. We are a diverse group of women living all over Japan, as well as some overseas. Now celebrating our 51st year as an organization, AFWJ has changed and grown over the years, but the core reason for our existence is the same: Offering friendship and support to international women in long-term relationships with Japanese nationals.


The rise of the Internet and social media makes it easier than ever to reach out to others, and AFWJ has a wide array of e-groups to suit the needs of members. However, being able to meet in person—whether at the local level, or at the annual National Convention—adds a whole new dimension to relationships. I can travel practically anywhere in Japan, and be sure of a warm welcome from local members. The connections we build lead to long-term, lasting friendships. Moreover, the wide range of backgrounds offers a chance to forge bonds with women of various ages and nationalities, and to benefit from the collective knowledge and wisdom of the group, whether the topic is relationships, childrearing, professional networking, legal advice or simply daily life in Japan. AFWJ members become like family, and we are there to share the good times and help each other through the hard times.


Louise George Kittaka,

AFWJ President, 2020-2022

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