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Message from Embassy of Panama in Japan

“The Embassy of Panamá in Japan is honored to be part of Karuta 2020 project, it gives children all over the world the opportunity to learn more about different countries including Panama in a very didactic way. Thank you to all the team of Karuta for making this project come true after 5 years of work,  more than 5,000 participants from 83 countries. Gracias!”

Embassy of Panama in Japan

Words from Margaret, Winner(受賞者)

I am greatly honored to have my work selected for the 2020 Karuta card contest. That project unites people around the world which is especially important now when it is not the time to travel and experience different cultures.

Karuta 2020 かるたコンテストで、私の作品が選ばれたことを大変光栄に思います。このプロジェクトを通じ、世界中の人々がつながることができます。旅行や異文化体験の機会がない今、とても大切なことだと思います。


Words from Diana, winner(受賞者)

This is Diana from Bulgaria! I am writing to you to express my gratitude and thank you again for choosing my work as a country category winner! It makes me very proud to be able to represent my country through your project and this wonderful card game! I would also like to greet all the other participants and winners who have worked hard to create something unique! Stay safe and healthy!



Message from Embassy of Thailand, Tokyo(タイ王国大使館)

We would like to congratulate on the success of “Karuta 2020” Project. Your efforts in organizing such a project during this challenging pandemic with a will to promote youth inclusiveness to share cultural diversity and creativity from different corners of the world is highly commendable.

We would also like to congratulate the winner of ‘Wat Arun’ card. We are thankful to be a part of the judging team and send our appreciation to the winners from Thailand from all over the world. The painting on the card is stunning and excellently shows the beauty of Thailand’s landmark.

To this end, we wish to extend the Project our continued support to this valuable project, which helps connect the world through art and imaginations.



また、「Wat Arun」カードの受賞者を祝福したいと思います。審査チームの一員として参加できたことに感謝するとともに、世界各地のタイの受賞者に感謝の気持ちを送ります。カードに描かれた絵は見事で、タイのランドマークの美しさを見事に表現しています。


The right mascot is named ‘Happy-chan’. Happy-chan is the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s mascot. It’s a ghost.

Message from Embassy of Oman, Tokyo(オマーン大使館)



Message from Embassy of the Dominican Republic (ドミニカ共和国大使館)

“This year I had the honor to collaborate with Karuta Project as a juror for Dominican Republic’s drawings. Then I had the opportunity to get to know this amazing initiative that brings education to children around the world through art and culture. Despise the unfortunate appearance of the COVID-19 pandemic worldwide and not being able to connect physically, Karuta Project has made children of all continents to connect in a deeper level, through their imagination.

I wish the best to Karuta Project organizers so they continue their amazing work for years to come.”

Joselyn Saladin
Ministra Consejera

「今年、ドミニカ共和国の絵画審査員として、Karuta Projectとコラボレーションするという栄誉を得ました。そして、芸術文化を通じ世界中の子どもたちに教育を提供する、この素晴らしい活動を知る機会を得ました。世界的にCOVID-19が流行し、物理的につながることができない不幸な状況にも関わらず、かるたプロジェクトは、すべての大陸の子供たちが想像力を通じて、より深いレベルでつながることを可能にしました。


ジョセリン サラディン

Bachata, alongside with Merengue, is one of the two typical latin rythms originals from the Dominican Republic. It has been declared as “Intangible World Heritage by UNESCO”.


Photo from Erdelyi, winner (受賞者)

Message from her teacher

“I inform you that the award for Lara Erdelja Pataki has arrived. I AM VERY HAPPY AND PROUD OF MY STUDENT !!!
I presented her with the award today. Her photo is attached. Thank you for everything!
I hope that there will be such a competition in the future as well.

I wish you all the best!”

Photo from the Embassy of Togo(駐日トーゴ大使館)


Video message from Embassy of Romania in Japan(駐日ルーマニア大使館)


Thank you very much for making karuta cards of Romania. We are sure that karuta will be an opportunity to deepen the cultural exchange between Romania and Japan. Let’s enjoy playing karuta together.


Words from Matt, winner(受賞者)

A few years ago, I went to Japan for the first time, at that time I had the chance to go to Toyo university for a summer cultural bootcamp if I may say. While studying Japanese language and culture we had the chance to participate in a Karuta workshop. I only knew this game from anime and it was really niche for me. For people who don’t know what is “Karuta” it’s a traditional Japanese game where you need to be the fastest to find the card with the illustration tied to the poetry the referee is reading. It’s quite fun but can be really hard. It’s a game of memory, speed and knowledge.

Anyway, after a few years I got my first game sent by the Karuta 2020 organisation and it was kind of a prototype with the cards we created at that workshop. And a few years later, this year to be exact, the official game is out, this is supposed to be used in the Olympics to promote Karuta as an Olympic sport and cultural treasure. My card is officially the one representing Belgium and I’m proud of it (even tho my drawing skills are awful, I’m sorry). This is the one you can see on the picture.Thank you again for this opportunity and for your gift.


Words from Evelyn, winner(受賞者)

Thank you very much for organizing Karuta Art Competition. I am grateful for being selected as one of the winners of the “Creative Karuta Award”.


Message from Embassy of Switzerland, Japan(駐日スイス大使館)


“We would like to congratulate you on the success of the “Karuta 2020” project. We are very happy to see the “L”/”き” cards of the painting, which shows the beautiful and quiet winter scenery of Switzerland in contrast with the colourful balloons. Thank you very much for adding such a beautiful view of Switzerland to a big project with more than 5000 participants. We would like to express our sincere thanks to Mr Wu and the project team. “
(translated by the project team)

Photos from Embassy of Malaysia, Japan(駐日マレーシア大使館)

The Embassy of Malaysia in Japan kindly sent us photos to celebrate the completion of the Karuta 200 cards. They are in a traditional dress called Baju Kurung.


The picture “illustrated the cultural diversity that Malaysia is proud of – this was seen in the different kinds of food that were displayed and enjoyed by Malaysians who are from different cultural backgrounds, living in harmony. The strong color choices and shading technique were also admirable.”


Words from Siyona, winner(受賞者)

“Thank you so much for this award for which I am extremely happy. It’s a great opportunity given to be creative and at same time learn about various countries and the cultures. I am very proud to be part of global Karuta 2020 projects! Regards and best wishes for future projects.”


Message from the Philippine Ambassador to Japan(駐日フィリピン大使メッセージ)


「Karuta 2020」に受賞された皆様、心よりお祝い申し上げます。また、フィリピンを題材にした作品「Street Vendors」で受賞された、オーストラリアのYesha Youngさんにもお祝いを申し上げます。子供たちがアイスクリームを食べて喜んでいる様子を描いたヤングさんの作品は、フィリピン訪問時に感じる、地域社会の温かい歓迎の気持ちを表現してくれています。



Words from Chris, winner(受賞者メッセージ)

“When I received word that I had won the contest, I couldn’t believe my ears. Thank you so much Karuta Project Team!”


Message from Embassy of Bulgaria in Japan(駐日ブルガリア大使館)

I am so happy to see so many children from all over the world take part in this wonderful project. The Olympic Games are a great opportunity for people from different cultures and beliefs to connect on a global level and feel that we are all one family.

The children’s drawings for the Karuta 2020 Project are all very unique and illustrate something interesting from their country. It is quite fun to look at them all and get to know these children through the cards. I cannot wait to play the Karuta game with friends.

I hope that in the future children will continue to connect the world by participating in such activities. I wish everybody to stay healthy and happy during these difficult times. And also the best of luck to all athletes at the Tokyo Olympic Games!

Elena Kutsarova
Interpreter, Culture
Embassy of the Republic of Bulgaria in Japan





Words from Mau, winner(受賞者メッセージ)


“I was surprised because I didn’t think I would win a prize, but I was really happy.”

Words from Naoya, winner(受賞者)


“I am very happy that my work was chosen from so many entries. I think I was able to express what I thought in my karuta.”

Photo from the Eritrean Embassy

We received a photo from the Eritrean Embassy in Tokyo, celebrating the completion of the “Karuta 200” cards. Eritrea’s official character Berebere-kun (camel) is in the picture holding a picture card of the Eritrean railway.

Eritrea is located in the north-east of Africa and has a population of about 5 million. There are not only deserts, but also mountains over 3000 metres high. The view from the window of the steam locomotive running through the mountains is magnificent and popular with tourists and railway fans from all over the world.

BereBereKun (Eritrea’s official character)

Words from Barbara, winner(受賞者メッセージ)

Hello! I’ve just received the cards and the certificate, I’m so happy!! Thank you so much for your hard work, I absolutely loved it and can’t wait to play karuta!


Words from Ryan, winner(受賞者)

I was lucky enough to have he  opportunity to travel to Scandinavia and was impressed by the ships they  built during the Viking Age, which provided a lot of inspiration for my  artwork.

Words from Elizabeth, winner(受賞者メッセージ)

“For my painting of Slovakia, I have painted Bojnice Castle. I have chosen it because I have
felt that it represents Slovakia really well. It’s one of the most beautiful castles in Slovakia
and I have been lucky enough to visit Bojnice castle!

Slovakia is famous for its natural landscapes and wildlife, so I wanted to include that As well!
On the left-hand side, there is a Slovakian dancer in a Slovak folk costume, and the patterned
sun is a folklore pattern to represent the heart of Slovakia.

I love colours , so I have made it very flamboyant. I used different art mediums
such as: watercolour, marker pens, watercolour pencils and a black gel pen.

When painting this picture, I have learned many new things like art techniques, and making
sure the different parts and colours work together in this picture. When deciding what to paint,
I’ve also learned lots of new facts about Bojnice castle and the varied folk costumes all across Slovakia!

Karuta is such an amazing game. Before I painted my Slovakia picture for the Karuta game,
I had never heard about Karuta game. But it is actually really fun! I think more people should
play Karuta and this project is helping really well to share this amazing game.

All of the cards are colourful and detailed and very beautiful! This contributes to the game so it
is really pretty to look at all cards. And interesting to learn about new cultures and traditions.
The Karuta 2020 project, Japan- is fun and exciting!”






Words from Angammana, winner(受賞者メッセージ)

“This is a beautiful religious place that is worshipped by most people in Sri Lanka. I visited this place with my parents in the evening as it is very easy to climb to the top of the mountain. I saw the beauty of this mountain at night-time and the beauty of the sun rising the next morning. When I was on the top of the mountain, I drew my sweet memories of these places as a picture.”

“Thank you for sending the prize of Creative Karuta Award: certificate and Karuta. I am very happy and proud of myself to see my picture on the ” Karuta card ” and a sweet description of my picture.”



Words from Lucas, winner(受賞者メッセージ)

“I created my piece using ink pen and a light wash of water color. I learned how to shade better and create deeper shadows with ink pen. “The lion is a memorial, it gives off a sad feeling for those soldiers died in war. I decided to paint this because I wanted to bring attention to this wonderful sculpture, as it seems unrecognized to most. ”

“I feel that the cards are an excellent way to express Japanese culture and games. I find Karuta is fun to play. I am proud of joining the competition and have my piece as one of the Karuta cards.”




Words from Thanumi, winner(受賞者メッセージ)

“I like this dancers’ make up and costumes with bright colours. It is very different and attractive.”

“We just received the certificate and cards. Thanks a lot and wish you all the best for the future activities.”



Words from Kate, winner(受賞者)

“This bird is beautiful and famous in Singapore. Just like Singapore on the world map, this bird is small but strong and pretty.” “Thanks for sending the Jury Award certificate. ”

「この鳥は美しく、シンガポールで有名です。世界地図上のシンガポールと同じように、この鳥は小さくても、強く美しいです。」 「審査員賞の賞状、ありがとう。」

Words from Haoshiuan, winner(受賞者メッセージ)

“Oil paper umbrella is famous and traditional. It is the hand-made umbrella in Taiwan. I like the umbrella and want everyone to come to see this traditional hand-made art. ” “We received the certificate this week. Thanks for your endeavour to promote this meaningful event!”


Words from SIYONA, winner(受賞者メッセージ)

“The port is in the island of Capri, Italy. I chose this island as is famous for its beauty, landscape, caves, seawater, hotels, shopping etc.”

“Hello from United Kingdom. Thank you for sending the prize of Creative Karuta Award : certificate and Karuta cards. They are very nice.”

「この港はイタリアのカプリ島にあります。この島はその美しさ、風景、洞窟、海、ホテルやショッピング等で、知られています。」 「こんにちは、イギリスからです。創作かるた賞の賞品と賞状、ありがとうございます。とても素敵です。」

Words from Giana, winner(受賞者メッセージ)

I am really proud to be a winner of the “Creative Karuta Award 2018”. I would like to promote Karuta in my country and serve your team as a Karuta Ambassador. It’s a great achievement which I got. I am herewith sending my photo with Karuta Certificate, and I took another photo with my art teacher Mr S Bogahawatte.  I would like to thank your team from the bottom of my heart. 

Words from Kana, winner(受賞者メッセージ)


「受賞した生徒は頑張った甲斐があったと、 とても喜んでおりました。かるた取りの様子ですが、受賞者本人と友人によって遊ぶことができましたので、 写真の一部を添付いたします。 日本語読み句と英語読み句では難易度が変わる! 日本語で分からない時は、英語読み句がヒントになった! と、楽しんでおりました。ステキな機会とステキな賞の受賞に感謝いたします。」

Words from Mai, winner(受賞者メッセージ)



Words from Ananya, winner(受賞者メッセージ)

myself and Ananya share a common interest of watchin cartoon SHINCHAN, we love it. 
When we inform her of Karuta awards she is very happy and always says that she will go to japan to play and watch shinchan.

Even though she is around 6.5 years old she is very innocent and we love that innocency. my husband always use to say i do not need a kid to be very matured like other kids at this age and he is very happy for this achievement of hers indeed we all. We thank you very much for your support.

Hope some day we meet either in Japn or in India.