Find your match by writing a letter: Japan Authorities

If you’re in a search of your soulmate a new and successful matchmaking scheme in a Japanese city may have the solution for you: write letters.

Singles in Miyazaki, southern Japan, are being encouraged to use pen and paper to find their soulmate as part of municipal efforts to increase the low birth rate.

Because the appeal of handwritten correspondence has captivated so many young residents, organizers have decided to expand the Miyazaki love letter programme to other areas.

According to Rie Miyata, head of a local consulting firm commissioned to run the scheme, in comparison to online dating, “it takes longer and inspires you to imagine the person you’re communicating with”.

Since the project’s inception in 2020, 450 people have signed up, more than doubling the authorities’ initial estimates, with roughly 70% in their twenties and thirties.

Members must register on the official website before they can join, providing details about their interests, favorite movies, literature, and sports, as well as the age of the person they want to correspond with.

The letter exchange management office then chooses and matches two individuals based on the recorded data who appear to be compatible. According to Japan’s The Mainichi, if both parties agree, they can interact through the office.

The letters are deposited in a yellow postbox, which is thought to provide happiness, which is one of the distinguishing characteristics of the Miyazaki Koibumi project.

But unlike dating apps, the only information shared about each new pen pal is their age; personal information like their full name, job title, and address are kept private. Of course, there are also no profile pictures available.

Letters are sent to the organizers, who quickly scan them to make sure they don’t contain any vulgar language or insults before forwarding them to the grateful recipient.

Members must adhere to certain guidelines, though. On special paper, they can write letters that are up to two sheets long. Without disclosing their names or addresses, a pair can exchange letters up to five times.

Operators are cautious when sharing contact information if a face-to-face meeting is desired by both parties. The decision is then left up to the members, according to the Japanese outlet.
At this point, 32 pairs have scheduled in-person encounters, and 17 couples have already begun dating.

In Japan, which has the world’s oldest population and one of the lowest reproduction rates, local governments frequently support matchmaking programmes, in contrast to the city’s initial strategy.

Women are now expected to have an average of 1.3 children throughout their lifetime, which is significantly less than the rate required to maintain a population. In 2021, the number of babies born reached a new record low of 811,604.

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