In Japan there are several kinds of public organisations and it can be confusing sometimes, but to explain it simply, in 2019 GJTea was legally established in Japan as a general incorporated association (一般社団法人in Japanese). Legally speaking it is a public organisation, but without non-profit status. So despite being a public organisation, we did not have any tax benefits and other advantages compared to non-profit organizations.
We have been working on this for several months and this March have received non-profit status! The kind of organization has not changed, but now we have non-profit status, so we have become a general incorporated association, non-profit kind (一般社団法人,非営利徹底型 in Japanese). This will give GJTea some tax benefits and will allow easier collection of membership fees and donations, from those who would like to support our work.