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The government might begin formulating measures to help find employment for those who have served as members of the Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers after they return to Japan.

During an informal meeting of Cabinet members on July 29, Health and Welfare Minister Junichiro Koizumi stressed the need to help JOCV members find jobs when they return from serving in developing countries. “I think that they have done very well and their work has been evaluated highly by people they worked for,” Koizumi said during the meeting. “It is regrettable that the volunteers find it difficult to find jobs when they return to Japan.”

He and Labor Minister Yutaka Okano agreed during the meeting to jointly draft measures to assist JOCV members find jobs. The health minister met with JOCV members during his recent visit to Africa. As of July 1, 2,234 Japanese between 20 and 39 were working in 56 countries as members of the JOCV, according to the secretariat of the organization. So far, 16,955 volunteers have participated in the program, the secretariat said.

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