More and more Japanese parents are attending matchmaking parties in an effort to marry off their children, worried that they will be part of the growing segment of the population that never ties the knot.

Although matchmaking for political or financial reasons was common in the past, with couples brought together via the services of intermediaries, these days parents are doing the legwork themselves to find someone their sons or daughters may genuinely love.

Armed with profiles of their offspring, more than 60 parents joined a matchmaking party at a Tokyo hotel in mid-January organized by matchmaking business provider Living Mariage. After carefully browsing through the details, they spent time talking to the parents of potential matches — sometimes waiting in line to do so. Sachiko Fukazawa, 64, who came to look for a partner for her 38-year-old daughter, said, "I want my daughter to find someone with whom she can live in a mutually supportive relationship. She herself is busy working so I came here to boost her chances."