Go For Broke National Education Center Awarded $193,080 Grant From National Endowment for the Humanities

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Funding to Digitize 800 Japanese American WWII Veterans’ Oral Histories from Hanashi Project.

Japanese American veterans salute the flag at Go For Broke monument in Los Angeles, CA.

"These stories speak to the courage, selflessness and patriotism of our Nisei vets in helping to protect our democracy."

Go For Broke National Education Center (GFBNEC) today announced the awarding of a $193,080 grant by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to help preserve, restore and digitize 800 oral histories of WWII Japanese American veterans contained in GFBNEC’s Hanashi Oral History program.

The 800 oral histories, which represent about 2,000 hours of moving-image playback, will be selected from nearly 1,200 interviews in the Hanashi archives. The histories chronicle the experiences of Japanese American veterans who served in segregated units during WWII, many of whom had families imprisoned in U.S. incarceration camps. The Hanashi program represents the largest compilation of such Nisei veteran interviews, and includes stories from those who served in combat and intelligence units in the European and Pacific Theatres.

“This grant from NEH will allow us to preserve these priceless histories of our Nisei veterans, and to better organize and index them so that they can be shared with scholars, researchers and the public for years to come,” Dr. Mitchell T. Maki, GFBNEC’s President and Chief Executive Officer, said. “These stories speak to the courage, selflessness and patriotism of our Nisei vets in helping to protect our democracy. Today, their examples can be used to inform public debate and policy as we discuss important issues such as tolerance, social justice and equal protection under the law.”

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation.

Note to Media: “Go For Broke” was the motto of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, a segregated Army unit composed of Japanese Americans from Hawai’i and the mainland. The term was Hawaiian slang for “shooting the works,” or risking everything for the big win in gambling—as the Nisei soldiers did while fighting in the field in WWII and facing prejudice at home in the U.S.

About Go For Broke National Education Center
Go For Broke National Education Center (GFBNEC) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit foundation that educates the public on the valor of Japanese American veterans of World War II and their contributions to democracy. Our goal is to inspire new generations to embody the Nisei veterans’ core values of courage, sacrifice, equality, humility and patriotism. Founded in 1989, GFBNEC maintains the Go For Broke monument and the interactive “Defining Courage” exhibition in downtown Los Angeles, as well as extensive oral histories and archives, education and training programs, and other initiatives. For more information, please visit http://www.goforbroke.org.

Media Contact:
Pauline Yoshihashi
Strategic Communications
For GFBNEC
323/683-8191 Direct
pyoshihashi(at)earthlink.net

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