Strengthen the Museum’s ability to tell stories in bold new ways, create new experiences using smart technology, share our resources nationally, and provide learning opportunities with general operating support ($17.5 million).

Unrestricted operating funds help the museum, quite literally, to keep the lights on. These funds allow JANM to sustain ongoing operations and ensure that the programs and resources on which the public depends are accessible, even during construction. Outright funds to power the Museum’s activities will help us deliver on our promise to inform a more just future and create a vibrant culture of democracy.

Education is the foundation of our work in achieving our mission at JANM. We know the invaluable impact of a museum visit and the importance of informal learning. The experiences of Japanese Americans help students understand who the “we” is in “We, the People.” Underpinning our educational programs is the belief in the importance of teaching children that by remembering history, we better guard against the divisiveness of prejudice and discrimination.

lawson sakai interactive display

The Interactive StoryFile of Lawson Iichiro Sakai

Special exhibitions engage the public by exploring timely and provocative subjects, offer unique learning experiences, and highlight stories and topics of interest to local and regional visitors. A new virtual presence through smart technology like The Interactive StoryFile of Lawson Iichiro Sakai allows generations of future visitors to have conversations with Japanese Americans and learn about their legacies.

collections rack of paintings

Artwork in JANM’s permanent collection

At the heart of the Museum is our permanent collection, which includes 150,000 primary sources. Artifacts, diaries, and letters chronicling the Japanese American experience as well as artwork created by Japanese American artists are all ambassadors and storytellers for the Museum which is why preservation of the collection for future generations is central to our mission. 

Our immersive in-person and virtual public programs inspire, educate, and help you stay connected to the broader Japanese American experience and the Museum’s mission. From free family festivals, exhibition-related public programs, book launches, film screenings, concerts, and dances, our programs deepen visitors’ understanding and appreciation of America’s ethnic and cultural diversity.

Ruth Asawa from the Masters of Modern Design documentary

Masters of Modern Design: The Art of the Japanese American Experience

Our award-winning Frank H. Watase Media Arts Center produces documentaries, exhibition media, and video life histories in support of JANM’s mission and work. Our documentaries are screened at festivals and venues nationwide, expanding JANM’s reach beyond its walls. By integrating technology with diverse communities and regions and promoting an appreciation of America’s diversity through media documentation and preservation, production and presentation, our Media Arts Center advances JANM’s role as a leading international institution.

Help us forge the future of America—a brighter, more just future of which we can all be proud. You can be an important voice in this story. Please join us.


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Please contact our Development Office to learn about ways to give:

Phone: 213.830.5646