The Kyoto Student Guide was first created by Ritsumeikan University Students to help Ritsumeikan foreign students. The goal has now expanded to helping all foreign students in Kyoto. In the menu you can find the major categories and under the Index tab you can look at all the topics ever covered. Under the Guide tab you can download a pdf copy of the Kyoto Student Guide.
Chikan (perverts) will often grope people, especially women, on public transportation, sometimes even in bike parking lots. One study from 2001 said that around 70 percent of Japanese high school girls had been groped and there are many stories of foreign people also being groped. There are ladies only cars on some trains (with some time and place restrictions). The signs are usually in pink and in English and Japanese. So here is a quick guide to help you know what to do if this happens to you.
1. Breathe and check
This is a really scary situation and you are probably freaking out. It will be okay just take moment to breathe and check what is going on. On crowded trains it can be easy to bump into someone. So check if this is that or someone groping you.
2. Decide what to do.
You have two options here you can say something or you can leave.
Say something. First grab the hand of the person then if you can speak Japanese say something like “suimasen chikan desu” (excuse me this is a pervert) or just “chikan” (pervert). While saying this raise their hand into the air. From what I have read this will spur the other passages into action. Often after you say something others will come to help and take the person to the office. You may need to give a statement about the situation.
Walk away. If you do not feel comfortable yelling or saying anything than just walk away to somewhere out of reach.
3. Check in
People react differently to groping. There also may be a delayed reaction. So make sure to check in with yourself and see how you are doing. While you may feel fine after something like like this other are not. So do what is right for you and don’t be afraid to talk about your experience with friends, family, or a counselor. (Here is information for English counseling in Kyoto).
Medical Interpretation Dispatch Service (book at least 5 days prior)
Kyoto City Hospital, 1-2 Higashi Takada-cho, Mibu, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto
English/Korean Tue/Wed/Fri 09:00-12:00 Appointment necessary
Chinese Fri 09:00-12:00 no appointment needed 311-5311
Ijinkai Takeda General Hospital, 28-1 Moriminami-cho, Ishida, Fushimi-ku, Kyoto
English/Korean/Chinese Tue/Fri/Sat 09:00-12:00, appointment necessary 572-6331
Koseikai Takeda Hospital, 841-9 Higashi Shiokoji-cho, Shiokoji-dori Nishinotoin-higashiiru, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto
English/Korean/Chinese Tue/Fri/Sat 09:00-12:00 appointment needed 361-1351
Kyoto Katsura Hospital, 17 Yamada Hirao-cho, Nishikyo-ku
English/Korean/Chinese Tue/Wed/Fri 09:00-12:00 appointment needed 391-5811
For those of us who need to visit the dentist, there is a place located not far from Kyoto Station (京都市下京区烏丸通七条下る東塩小路町735 京阪京都ビル3Ｆ). They do have an English speaking dentist, but you may also be given a dentist who may not speak English, so a little Japanese language ability may be required. Price varies depending on the procedure, but fillings are relatively cheap, as are check-ups, ranging between 1200-2500 yen. Appointment required; call 075-371-0998. However, appointments can be made online at this website if you can understand Japanese.
There is also the AMDA International Medical Information Center, which provides telephone services to foreign residents in Japan in several languages, introducing medical facilities and explaining the health care system. The Kansai Center can be reached at 06-4395-0555.
This website is useful for translation services and mobile applications specifically for medical purposes (though it also includes other applications as well). It also talks about the medical interpreter dispatching service with leading hospitals in Kyoto.
There is the Sakabe International Clinic (Gokomachi dori Nijo Sagaru, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto) which is useful for check-ups for those students graduating and hoping to enter the workforce in Japan. They also have blood test and x-ray facilities. The doctor speaks fluent English. Appointment recommended, call 075-231-1624.
There is the Satoko Ladies Clinic (Kyoto, Ukyo Ward, Saiinhigashijunnaincho, 13−9) (located a three minute walk north from Hankyu Saiin Station), which deals not only with “women’s problems” such as pregnancy, birth control, irregular menstruation and breast examinations, but can offer support and medical advice concerning mental illness, insomnia, weight disorders, trauma and rehabilitation (and can prescribe medicine such as sleeping pills, etc. if need be). The doctor speaks English, and is more than willing to give advice regarding available English counselling services. As I know that students are worried about prices, consultation and medication is approximately 1500 yen. Appointment required; call 075-325-0272. (FEMALE ONLY)