CAMP ZAMA, Japan (Nov. 20, 2020) – Although there are many off-post employment opportunities for Camp Zama community members, it is important to remember that everyone here under the Status of Forces Agreement must apply for permission with U.S. Army Garrison Japan beforehand.
The process is simple, said Rika Osada, business and nonprofit liaison for the Non Appropriated Fund Support Management Division of Camp Zama’s Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation.
“Applicants only need to fill out a request form and checklist,” Osada said. “I ask applicants to provide me their email address, and I will send the forms with instructions to them by email, and they can either make an appointment to turn in their application or they can scan [the forms] and send [them] to me.”
In addition, depending on the applicant’s status, the process requires copies of documents, such as a letter of intent, passports, appointment orders, certificates and licenses, Osada said. Most applicants hear back within a week.
In particular, teaching English and modeling (for children) are popular off-post jobs for people with SOFA status, Osada said. Others work at a wide range of businesses in the area.
Working off post can be a good option for spouses who have a certain work interest or if they want to earn extra income, Osada said.
Suki Andrews, the spouse of Nicholas Andrews, outreach services director for Camp Zama’s Child and Youth Services, plans to start teaching English at a Japanese school in April (the start of the Japanese school year), and recently went through the process of applying through the garrison.
The process is easy, Suki said, and she would recommend it to others.
Teaching English was a good option for Suki, she said, because she does not speak Japanese, so she is not eligible for many off-post opportunities. She found her job through a website that advertises English teaching jobs.
Suki, who grew up in Hong Kong, said her first language is Cantonese, and she learned English and Chinese when she was in school, so she is familiar with how children learn a new language.
Suki said she looks forward to helping children learn English.
“I’m hoping to get some energy from the kids,” Suki said.
Suki’s husband Nicholas said it is important for sponsors to know that their dependents must apply with the garrison to work off post.
The process is important because garrison officials need to know where dependents are working in case something happens, Nicholas said.
Meanwhile, Jennifer Partridge, director of Camp Zama’s Army Community Service, said the organization can help people find jobs on and off post through Employment Readiness services.
Most of the off-post jobs are for teaching English, Partridge said, and ACS can direct people to websites where employers post opportunities.
In addition, ACS can help with on-post opportunities such as general schedule and contractor positions, as well as Post Exchange and commissary jobs. Employment Readiness also assists with resume and interview preparation.
For help navigating the Japanese economy in general, ACS offers information and referral services, and they can assist with off-post employment opportunities, Partridge said.
Osada said applicants should contact her directly with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone at (DSN) 315-263-5962 or (COMM) 046-407-5962. To contact ACS, call (DSN) 315-263-HELP or (COMM) 046-407-HELP, Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.