Yuka co-founded ACE in 1997 and gained experience in various international academic and advocacy roles since. She currently serves as a Board Member for the Japan Ethical Initiatives, as well as for JANIC (Japan NGO Center for International Coorperation). In 2019 she served as the C20 Chairwoman for the G20 Summit held in Osaka.
Tomoko co-founded ACE during her fourth year of university during which she conducted field work on child labour in India with her research group. She has strong expertise and experience in planning and managing field projects and consulting businesses in human rights issues in supply chains. She has also completed the SA8000 Social Audit training course.
MEET THE TEAM
PEACEFUL, PROSPEROUS & SUSTAINABLE WORLD
We live in a world where life is worth living and each life is valued.
We recognize humans have
unlimited potential and each person is different and unique.
By accepting our differences, and by living in harmony with nature, we can together unleash endless possibilities to create a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable world.
We envision a world in which every person can begin their journey as a child. Everyone enters the world as a child.
Children are the future whose needs are in the present. They are
immense sources of energy that can power the creation of a better world.
It is the responsibility of older generations to protect the rights and well-being of children and youths, as we would have wanted previous generations to protect us.
CHANGE STARTS FROM WITHIN
Every person has the power to
overcome challenges, every person has the power to change society.
Changing our behaviour comes from changing our mindset, from small change within comes systemic transformation.
Social issues are interconnected. Resolving them in the long-term requires us to look at the whole picture. Approaching problems systemically allows us to fix the root causes rather than just offer symptomatic relief.
We aim to resolves issues at a systemic level.
The rights based approach is the core and base of the systemic solutions we aim to achieve.
We encourage all stakeholders to respect and undertake their duties and responsibilities stated in the international conventions.
We aim to be a learning organization which constantly evolves and drives results. We learn from complexity, and overcome mental models to create innovative solutions. We believe that each person’s vision and growth is the origin of our organization’s
greater vision and development.
We continue to evolve together.
DIALOGUE, ENGAGEMENT & PARTNERSHIP
Dialogue and engagement are
crucial instruments to tackling
challenges together. It allows us to
understand our diverse interests
and work together towards our common goals, using our different strengths to uncover new solutions to old problems.
We form partnerships with organizations and individuals who share our purpose, working in solidarity to make the biggest impact.
DREAM, DISCOVER, BELIEVE, DO.
Dream big dreams. Discover your strengths. Believe in your potential. Seize opportunities and just Do.
Believing in your own power and that of others, and society can change. Celebrate small successes on the way to the big changes we seek.
Every step counts.
In 1997, we were 5 Japanese college students asking ourselves what we could do about the child poverty and exploitation we were seeing throughout our respective travels and research.
That was the year that Kailash Satyarthi (later a Nobel Peace Prize laureate) was architecting the Global March against Child Labour, the largest worldwide civil society movement standing up for the most exploited children across the globe. We wanted Japan to participate in the event that was to be held a year later in some 103 countries around the world.
We saw the march as our call to action and came together to establish ACE (Action against Child Exploitation).
At first, we were just a group of people with a common goal. After achieving our initial aim of organizing the march in Tokyo and Osaka in 1998, we realized this was just the beginning.
Back then, we didn't possess much know-how, we just knew we had to act. Quickly realizing that to achieve the biggest impact as a small organization we needed to understand and optimize our strengths, we decided to leverage our privileged position in Japan to connect consumers and
corporations to children and communities.
Over 20 years on, we have accumulated extensive field experience and professional expertise to resolve issues of child labour throughout global supply chains. We intend to continue to do so.
Participated in the Global March Against Child Labour (India and Switzerland)
Organized the Global March Against Child Labour in Japan (Tokyo and Osaka)
Began Child Friendly Village projects in India
Launched the World Cup Campaign 2002, KICK OUT CHILD LABOUR FROM THE WORLD
Started co-organizing the ILO World Day Against Child Labour Symposium
Established the Child Labour Network in Japan
Officially registered as a Non-Profit Organization in Japan
Completed the SA8000 basic auditor training course
Published our first book, "I am an 8 year old girl, Working on the Cacao Farm" (Japanese)
Certified as NPO Corporation by the National Tax Agency allowing corporate donors to receive tax incentives
Nominated for the US Department of Labour Iqbal Masih Award
Winner of the 10th Japan Partnership Awards,
Second Grand Prix and Alterna Award
First commercialization of chocolate using SMILE Child Labour-free cacao beans
Winner of the Consumer Education Material Award Excellence Award
Received the Appointment and Active Role of Female Staff Award at the NGO Organizational Strength Awards
ACE invited Kailash Satyarthi to hold events in Japan
Received the International Division Award at the Nikkei Social Initiative Awards
Signed the Global Compact and joined the Global Compact Network Japan
ACE President Yuka Iwatsuki chaired the C20
Summit ahead of the G20 Summit in Osaka, Japan 2019
Officially launched the Protocols and Guidelines of the Child Labour Free System in collaboration with the Ghanaian government