TOKYO, Aug. 3 (UPI) -- Japan's women's soccer team will receive one of the nation's highest awards for winning the FIFA Women's World Cup, the government has announced.
The People's Honor Award will be bestowed on the Nadeshiko Japan team by Prime Minister Naoto Kan Aug. 18, the first time it has been given to a group, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said Tuesday.
The team "has given Japanese people the courage to face difficulties such as the Great East Japan Earthquake," Edano said.
The team is named for the nadeshiko, a pink, frilled flower considered a symbol of Japanese womanhood.
Nadeshiko captain Homare Sawa, who was named Most Valuable Player in the World Cup finals, told The Yomiuri Shimbun: "I'm very surprised and honored to receive such a prestigious award. If we were able to give everybody some hope and energy while Japan is rebuilding its strength, I'm very happy."