Santen Recognized for Longstanding Commitment to Nippon Lighthouse Guide Dog Training Program

May 21, 2024 – Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (hereinafter Santen) announced today that Nippon Lighthouse (headquarters: Osaka) has presented Santen with a certificate of appreciation for the company's longstanding support of the organization, including donations to its guide dog training program. The certificate of appreciation was presented during a ceremony at Santen headquarters on April 11, 2024.


Social welfare organization Nippon Lighthouse is a comprehensive welfare center for the blind and visually impaired. The organization operates multiple facilities, including a Rehabilitation Center for the Visually Impaired and a Guide Dog Training Center, and for more than a century has been providing support to visually impaired people in Japan as a “lighthouse on land.” As part of its CSR activities, Santen has been a longstanding supporter of Nippon Lighthouse, dispatching employee volunteers to events sponsored by the organization. Santen seeks to realize an inclusive society where everyone can live in harmony irrespective of visual impairment, and since 2013, has been supporting the organization through sponsorship (membership fee: 300,000 yen/year) and donations that help cover the cost of guide dog training (3.5 million yen/year). To date, Santen donations have been used to train 11 guide dogs, nine of which are currently working as guide dogs in Osaka and elsewhere. Meanwhile, Santen’s Tokyo office maintains a vending machine from which a portion of the proceeds are donated to Nippon Lighthouse to help train future guide dogs for the blind, making it possible for employees to directly contribute to this program.


Left: Guide dog fundraising vending machine in Santen’s Tokyo office
Right: Message from Nippon Lighthouse

Teruo Hashimoto, Board Chairman, Nippon Lighthouse, presented Santen with the certificate of appreciation, which was accepted on behalf of the company by Fumiyasu Ako, Corporate Officer and Chief of Staff to CEO, and Takahiro Morita, Corporate Officer and Global Head of Core Principle & Sustainability.


From left: Nippon Lighthouse Board Chairman Hashimoto with Morita and Ako of Santen


“Donations from companies like Santen are indispensable for people who live in municipalities without guide dog-related support,” said Hashimoto. “I hope that society will come to better understand the visually impaired. I would appreciate it if sighted people would support the visually impaired and make it easier for them to participate in society by engaging with people with white canes when they encounter them on the street, and by helping people with guide dogs by letting them know when the light has changed since guide dogs can’t distinguish the colors on a traffic signal. As an organization, we will do our best to raise awareness.”


Also attending the ceremony was Mieko Yamamoto, who is currently using the fifth guide dog trained with support from Santen. Said Yamamoto: “We have been partners for 2 years. Taking care of a guide dog is like taking care of a human child. I monitor her physical condition every day through her appetite and elimination. When I walk alone, I bump into things by my third step, but with a guide dog, I can go anywhere.”

As a specialized company dedicated to ophthalmology, Santen aims to realize an inclusive society where everyone can live in harmony irrespective of visual impairment. Santen is taking on the challenge of improving people’s awareness and understanding of the visually impaired, promoting initiatives that enable all people to enjoy and share values together, while exploring and promoting new solutions to improve the quality of life (QOL) of people with visual impairments.


Learn more about the Guide Dog Training Center here (Japanese):