Founded in 2011, Nagomi Visit is an NPO that brings together local hosts and international guests through the experience of cooking and eating at the hosts’ homes. Run by founder and CEO Megumi Kusunoki and COO Alisa Sanada, the program was recently awarded the Japan Foundation Prize for Global Citizenship, and has exceeded expectations in terms of its growth and popularity.
Their goal is to be a cultural exchange program that is accessible to everyone, easy to use, and where real friendships form. Cooking together is always a great ice breaker, so we decided to focus the project around going to a local home somewhere in Japan and cooking and eating together. If you just moved to Japan or are traveling around Japan while living in Tokyo, we want to provide the opportunity to meet new locals through a Nagomi Visit.
All hosts are volunteers. They thought the host and guest dynamic might change if money was exchanged, so the fixed participation fee that guests pay (¥3,500) is just enough to cover the costs of ingredients to make the meal, and to support our operational costs. We wanted to be mindful with our approach to cultural understanding so we decided to be a non-profit organization to construct a program where hospitality can stay genuine.