About KumAJET


What is KumAJET?

KumAJET is the local chapter of the Association for Japan Exchange and Teaching (AJET). AJET is a national volunteer organization of JET Programme participants whose mission is to serve the JET community by building support networks, organizing useful information, and offering resources to enhance the lives of JETs.

KumAJET strives to be a group that brings people together to have fun and make friends here in Kumamoto. Whether you’re looking to do some volunteer work, get out for a night on the town, or explore some of  Kumamoto’s scenery, we are the group for you.

KumaJET members include current and former JETs as well as members of the local community. Our events are open to all residents of Kumamoto, both foreign and Japanese. Along with planning our own unique KumAJET events, we provide details about other events going on in the prefecture here and on our official Facebook page.

Mission Statement

KumAJET’s main objectives are to connect JETs and Kumamoto residents together to engage in socializing, explore the prefecture, and make great memories here in Japan, all while giving as much back to our communities as we possibly can.

The 2019-2020 Team

Kelli Yogi, KumAJET President48D98DC7-9B3B-4D1B-9652-36E17D488131

Hey Everyone! My name is Kelli Yogi. I’m from California, USA and I am currently living in Kumamoto City. I will be going on my 2nd year as a SHS ALT and I am so excited for the endless possibilities to come.

Those who know me, know that I’m a travel bug who loves feeding my friends and hosting fun events. I’m also interested in photography, art, sports, hiking, cooking, and binging Netflix.

I have never managed a website before, but I suppose there’s a first time for everything! If there’s something you’d like to see on here or if you think something could be improved, please let me know! 🙂

Ethan Barkalow, Volunteer Coordinator

IMG_4303Hi, I’m Ethan and I’m from Boston, MA. I’m a 2nd year ES ALT in Mashiki-machi.

I’m enthusiastic about sushi, skiing and going to onsens. I’m even more enthusiastic about craft beer!

I work closely with Jiaien Orphanage and I’m always on the lookout for great volunteering opportunities and charities. If you come across any that we should know about, please contact us!

I’m excited to spend a fun year in Kumamoto with you all — come to our events!!

Tayla-Paige van Sittert, Public Relations Officer & KumAJET PhotographerIMG_4302

I’m Tayla, the new social media person for KumAJET this year. I’m based in Kumamoto City and from South Africa. One of my proudest movements was when it snowed for the first time ever in my small South African town, and all the students were stuck in class learning while this magic happened around us. I knew I had to do something about that so I ran to the principal and negotiated some playtime in the snow for everyone.

Also, I really love Instagram and pretty things so count on me shoving the camera in your face for features on kumAJET. See you!

Patrick Dolan, Treasurer

Hey guys! I’m Fit-Patrick and I’m from somewhere on the East Coast of the USA.

Lottie Caddick, Community Outreach Coordinator

Hey, I’m Lottie and I’m from Liverpool, UK. I’m a 2nd year SHS ALT in Kumamoto City.


colortweakgregGreg Rammit, Athletics Director

Kia Ora, my name is Greg and I’m from New Zealand. I love playing sports, camping, and exploring the outdoors.

My goal is to encourage more people living in Kumamoto to join a team as a way to make new friends and see Kyushu.

Drop me a Line if you are interested in Rugby, American Football, Touch Rugby, Flag Football, Ultimate Frisbee, Kickboxing, MMA, Jiu Jitsu or, any other sports that I can help connect you with.

Chris Ott, Kumamoto Veteran & KumAfest Coordinator

Hey everyone! My name is Chris. I’ve been in beautiful and magical Kumamoto for a bit now, and I am looking forward to sharing with any adventurers or prospective adventurers out there all that Kumamoto and Kyushu have to offer.

There’s so much to do on this island! Swimming in rivers and gorges, inner-tubing, jumping into waterfall pools, and sliding down natural waterslides are just the start!


You can find beaches, snorkeling havens, camping by the surf and in the mountains, and spectacular hiking. I also recommend trying out rental bicycles, roller luging, driving hi-speed go-karts, riding Honda dirt bikes, and if you can, getting a motorcycle license and driving around Aso area!  Hot springs range from the super acidic to the super alkaline, from the super-clear to the super-muddy to the super-carbonated, from the posh and refined to the undeveloped and natural. There are amazing rural cafes, restaurants, and coffee houses as well. There is so much waiting to be done and seen!

If you are interested in outdoor adventuring and exploring, or have some questions, please shoot me an email : christopherott [at] hotmail [dot] com.

Looking forward to seeing you all on some adventures!