Japan’s overwhelming use of institutions instead of family-based care is failing thousands of vulnerable children by not preparing them for independent, productive lives in Japanese society. According to government statistics, more than 39,000 children in Japan live in different kinds of institutions across the country. These are “alternative care” settings, including infant care institutions, child care institutions, short-term therapeutic institutions, group homes for independent living, and foster care and family homes. The children were removed from their families because the authorities determined that their parents were either unable or unwilling to care for them properly.