2013년 12월 26일 목요일

[Focus] Refrigerator Volunteers

"Human is the best present"
Refrigerator Volunteers : Lee Young Im, Lee Yeon Ja, Cho Soon Jae
(Seoul YWCA 31th Postnatal Carers)

Refrigerator Volunteers are voluntary gathering of Seoul YWCA members who are working as postnatal carers. They visit senior citizens who live alone and clean their refrigerators. They try to be a friend of senior citizens as well. Here is warm story about 3 members who have been volunteering as a team. 

We are team with great gratefulness
Lee Young Im, Lee Yeon Ja, and Cho Soon Jae. Their beautiful smiles always make us happy and bright. It is definitely not easy for them to do volunteering after the full week of work from Monday to Friday or Monday to Saturday. Nevertheless, their face are full of joy and gratefulness. Lee Young Im said that she recommended Ms. Lee and Ms. Cho tp join the volunteer activity after she experienced volunteer program for migrant workers. The team got trained at Guro Senior Citizen Welfare Center on January 15th , 2011. Since then, they have been visiting Kim Chae Bong, senior citizen who live alone and are 83 old, on Saturday of every third week.

Old Lady's Welcoming with Tears
On the first day of visiting the old lady, Kim, the whether was freezing. Besides, it was not easy to find the way to her home. When they met the lady welcoming them with tears, the team was moved. How much she missed people? They couldn't imagine. Kim said that she prayed all the time, 'Lord, thank you so much for sending those precious people to this useless old one. Thank you for filling me with love.'

She Makes Me Think My Mother
When they call her some times, she always said, 'You don't have to come. You are so busy and tired.' Her voice makes them feel mother's love. Weather forecast says this winter will be so cold and freezing. They are going to give her inner wears and some foods. Even they have to participate in family gathering, they don't miss the day of visiting her. Their children forced them to take a rest instead of volunteering, however, now, they support mothers' volunteering.

Seoul YWCA's Refrigerator Volunteers have been doing their activity since 2010. 23 volunteers as 12 teams regularly visited senior citizens who are living alone. If you want to join this activity, please call at 3705-6024. You can share your love anytime.

[Policy Monitoring] Mental Health Protection of Senior Citizens

Healthy life of senior citizen is emerging as the one of the significant social issues in this aging society. Seoul YWCA's Policy Monitors found out the way senior citizens could approach to programs to improve their mental health. 

Improvement of Depression Questionnaire Needed
Seoul YWCA's Policy Monitors(SYPM) sought advice on depression questionnaires collected from a few organizations in charge of medical check-up of citizens. National Health Insurance Cooperation asks only 3 questions about mental health of examinee over 66. Can we find an effectiveness of diagnosis with this questionnaire?  3rd-level hospital provides in-depth check-up about sleep, stress, anxiety, depression, however, the expense is too high for the vulnerable. Seoul Mental Health Improvement Center opens on-line check-up system so that anybody can access, but the elderly could not use its system easily. Suwon Mental Health Center for Senior Citizen offers subdivided questionnaires including senior citizen's recognition improvement program and depression improvement program. Its diagnostic rate is over 80% but it is only open for Suwon citizens.

Awareness on Metal Health Still Low
SYPM surveyed 200 women over 40 to find out their awareness on mental health. About the question 'Do you fell depression?', 36% of them answered 'I feel weakness and am depressed frequently', 32% said 'I don't like hanging out with people', 20% responded 'I cannot sleep because of anxieties', and 12% said 'I often feel like crying'. Despite of those results, 54% of them answered 'I don't need any help for those problems'. And 50% of them are thinking negatively about the mental health improvement program of their communities. As a result, change in their awareness on mental health is significantly needed.

Integrated Management System Required
First, National Health Insurance Cooperation has to reform their questionnaires on mental health. The number of questionnaires should be increased from 3 to 15. Senior citizen over 65 has to be able to get the mental check-up also. Second, there should be therapy and various program after the check-up linked with public health centers. Third, we have to improve our awareness on mental health. How about using 'Mental Stability Check-up' instead of 'Depression Check-up'? Mental Health Cafe can be run to provide helpful information. Finally, we suggest integrated management system to foster consultants for senior citizen's mental health.

SYPM submitted its results and suggetions to Seoul Metropolitan City's Department for Mental Health Improvement and will hand in to National Health Insurance Cooperation, too. For good policy enabling women's happy life, SYPM will keep doing policy monitoring.  

Seoul YWCA News in November, 2013

Gangnam Youth Center
Teen Club Festival
A club festival, ‘CLUB DAY’ was organized along with 12 clubs and 239 teens on November 9th (Saturday) in the fornt yard of Gangnam Youth Center. Each club prepared a booth and each wrote a ‘To Do List’ to decorate the Christmas tree. The economy club G.E.T and Suseo Middle School economy club S.E.S opened a ‘Reuse, Reduce, Recycle’ also known as ‘Ahnabada’ market and donated the days total sales profit for the marginalized adolescents.

YMCA and YWCA Joint Service
Seoul YWCA held a joint service on the theme of ‘agents of change’ during the week of World YMCA&YWCA International fellowship. Female theologian Choi Man Ja preached on the words of ‘Powers of Change: Discontinuity, Pity, Livelihood, Wisdom’, and each participant took their time to put one’s vows into a patchwork. The offerings of the day were sent to Milyang residents who are struggling to oppose the construction of a transmission tower.

Department for Adults Education
In-depth leadership education for businesswomen
The adult division opened an in-depth businesswomen leadership development program ‘Job & Tomorrow Up’ on November 19th (Tuesday). During orientation self-introductions were made and the importance of change was learned. Expert advice and collective coaching were done to resolve realistic tasks and challenges of businesswomen. There are 23 participants in the completing class, and 12 who have participated in the new class. The program is expected to proceed until January of next year.

Garak Social Welfare Center
The 6th Family Kite Flying
On November 16th (Saturday), Garak comprehensive social welfare center and 160 local residents proceeded with the 6th family kite flying activity held in Hangang Park. Starting with stretches and exercises, families and neighbors proceeded with watching world kites, and made creative kites. Lastly a kite-flying contest was held to conclude the wonderful memories held on an autumn day.

Department for Youth
Y-Teen fundraising bazaar for Myanmar community serive
The Teen division on November 23rd (Saturday) held a Y-teen fundraising bazaar for Myanmar community service project from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thirty Y-teen members participated to raise funds for college students for the Myanmar community service project that will take place starting on January 15th. Y-teen members who participated in the bazaar hoped that these small gestures will help fulfill a larger purpose.

Yeongdeungpo Women Resources Development Center
Business transitional education ‘Starting up a Coffee’ process
On November 7th (Thursday) at Yeongdeungpo Women Resource Development Center, businessmen who are planning on changing their type of business, and eleven businessmen who went out of business, took a business transitional education ‘Starting up a Coffee’ class. Participants learned about a founder’s mind, marketing strategies, and analyzed case studies. Overall participants had a time to understand about starting up a business.

Sungdong Youth Center
Alternative School ‘Tong’ extracurricular activities ‘Hand Factory’
At Sungdong Youth Cultural Center Alternative School ‘Tong’ on January 14th, an extracurricular activity ‘Hand Factory,’ a non-verbal arts and crafts activity, was organized in hopes to release internal stress. Teens who participated in the activity had time to make clocks, clay pots, and miniatures to reflects on and express one’s inner side.

Nowon Women Resources Development Center
Human Network Club Meeting
On November 15th (Friday), six mentor-mentee human network program clubs that were active for a year, met at Nowon Women Resource Development Center. Club members offered words of encouraged for the efforts the clubs made to develop employment capabilities and gave each other further support.

[YWCA Forum] Our Food, is it Safe from Radiation

On November 18 (Tuesday) at 2p.m., Seoul YWCA along with members and 80 participating citizens, opened a forum regarding the recent social problem of radiation and food safety. During the lecture, YooJin Lee, from the planning committee of the center of energy politics, chaired the meeting.

Radiation and Food Safety
2 years and 7 months have passed since Fukushima’s nuclear accident. Prime minister, Abe Shinzo, declared that Fukushima’s radiation is being completely controlled. However, TEPCO has announced that “10 million becquerel of radiation per hour is still being emitted.” Radioactive ‘substances cannot be felt through any of the five senses, and does not disappear with any chemical treatment. Radiation exposure limits are also set by the government according to the commercial interests and are not medically based. The reference value of 1mSv set by the government has the possibility of causing 10,000 people to acquire cancer. Unless the value is zero, there is no such thing as safe radiation exposure.

With public anxiety about radioactive contamination increasing, we propose the following policy to the government. All food imports from Japan should be banned. Rapid inspection of Japan’s marine products should be suspended and instead Korean Food Standards Codex’s ‘ten thousand seconds test’ should be implemented. Russia, China, and domestic fishery products should also be checked in the same way for radioactivity. Little to non-traceable amounts of contamination found in Japanese food also need to show the non-polluted certificate. Strontium and plutonium must also be included into the list of test items. The government should cooperate with China, Russia, etc. to monitor radioactive contamination of the ocean and information should be disclosed. Test results on baby products, cosmetics, industrial products and industrial materials, and radioactive waste, etc., should also be disclosed and relevant authorities and departments should be unified.

We Met Peace in Jeju

Refugee and South Korean college students learn and share peace and prepare for unification, ‘Peace School on a Street’.
18 South Korean students that have been studying about peace for the last four months went on a 2night 3days (November 11th-15th) trip to the peaceful island of Jeju.

A Friendly Trip that Thinks of the Region
Jeju, a place which just hearing the name makes one’s heart flutter, is an island of peace that many peace activists from all over the world have come to visit because of the recent Gangjeong village naval base construction that has become an international issue. With the question ‘what can we do to find peace’ in mind, we went on a fair travel. Fair travel, also called friendly travel, is not a travel that just includes eating and having fun, but it is also a trip where everyone respects the region, recognizes diversity, economy is revived, social problems are solved, and nature is preserved.
North and South Korean college students who went on the Jeju-do peace trip ate at restaurants in which the profit are all returned back to the local residents. They had the opportunity to go to a pesticide-free tangerine plantation, walk up and down the Geomunoreum Lava Tube System, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and visit the Gangjeong village and meet peace.

Meeting Peace with the Heart

What is peace? Gangjeong village that had been going through much conflict since 2007 over the naval base construction showed us and made us feel the peace that was in our mind. As the naval case construction started in the ocean in front of Gangjeong village, which is tourist attraction, it led to many conflicts. 

Director Training 2014-2015 YWCA Emphasis on Education

Seoul YWCA has coordinated a director training program with Seoul’s northern part directors, members, and staff on November 6 (Wednesday) from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Out of the six 2014-2015 YWCA priority projects, peaceful unification, female violence prevention, gender-sensitive policy settlement are the lectured subjects summarized and looked at.

Preparations for unification, education for peace and path to aid North Korea

Prof. Kim, Young-Soo (Seogang University)

Why peaceful unification?
Currently North Korea’s ‘Kim Jong Un center’ system has been developing and strong winds of social change is forming. As information circulation has accelerated, more people have come to use cell phones and as capitalism has come into play, there have been changes to perceptions on capital. In a new political culture with its emphasis on foundation and composition and capitalism’s ‘We can live only with money’ have merged, bribery has become prevalent.
Why peaceful unification? This is because we know the damages of unification by force, and because after unification there cannot be a separation. Recently Kim Jong Un has declared a unification by force within three years heightening the tension between North and South Korea. The terrible and tragic effects of war cannot be imagined by any generation that was not experienced war. We need to prepare for a peaceful unification to avoid our country from devastation, and a separation again after unification. Peaceful unification starts with preparation. Institutional unification is important; however, a unified mind is more important. We must start from acknowledging that we are different from others.

Unification of People, Unification of Mind
To overcome the realities of a sixty year division, we need to prepare for a ‘unification of people’, which is the ‘unification of mind’. Why not practice a rehearsal on unification ‘with North Korean refugees’ and not ‘for North Korean refugees’. To understand North Korea comprehensively we need a new education from before and we must continue to inform North Koreans of new announcements.
Envisioning the future after unification is also important. Let’s try imagining how it would be like after unification. We must have thoughts such as ‘what would happen to the army after unification, which major would be most popular, what can we do for a living’ and we must envisage our life after unification.

With regard to North Korean aid, we need not a one-time aid but we need to emphasize ‘little, meaningful, continuous’ aid. Its important to continuously carry out projects such as sending sanitary pads and cosmetics to North Korean women, and sending powdered milk to North Korean children. Let us try constructing a ‘Y-project’ that may differentiate the YWCA from others.

[Letter to YWCA] Thank You YWCA Scholarship!

From Seok Jung Mi (Myung Ji High Schoo)
First of all thank you for giving me such a valuable scholarship. As valuable as it is, I will use it in places that are most necessary. I will also study hard and participate actively in community service.
I was very fortunate to have met the Y-teen club when I stated high school. I always had a desperate wanting to volunteer, but when I found out that our school offers a community service activity, I immediately became a Y-teen member.
Y-teen club has been more than just a community service activity but has given me an opportunity to participate in valuable experiences. Through many activities such as the Dokdo flash mob, North Korea defector volunteer program, and watching human rights movies, I have realized that Seoul Y is an exceptional organization that helps teens build awareness of our society and our world. I am therefore very grateful and proud to be a Y-teen member.
Y-teen activities have allowed me to think and reflect more deeply on our society which caused me to think of becoming a person that may help the society. Carrying out my responsibility, I will become an even more active member in the future.

From Nam Ye-un (Dong gu marketing High School)
I am grateful to have received a scholarship. Through the scholarship I was able to pay for school operations and lunch fees. I would like to say how thankful I am.
I have learned a lot as a Y-teen member. Through various community services, knowing that I could be of help to others gave me a challenge and confidence. Participating in community activities I have not experienced before gave me the capacity to think more largely and to become more mature.
I am already somber thinking that I will not be able to participate more activity in Y-teen activities next year when I am a senior in high school. However, I will always practice the things YWCA has taught me for the past two years.

Once again I send my heartfelt gratitude and appreciation to YWCA for financial support. With Y spirit, I will try on becoming a great member of the society and embrace our society and others.

Toilet Paper, Counterattack of Chemicals

Choi, Jae-Sook (Executive Director, Eco Consumer Cooperative)

Although newspapers and other types of plain paper are recycled and used, the main source of toilet paper is trees. For these raw materials to become toilet paper, a lot of chemicals are used mainly chlorine bleach and fluorescent whitening agent. Sometimes ink is used to print in drawings, and more chemicals are added for fragrance. Large amount of chemicals are used not only in toilet papers, but also in napkins and wooden chopsticks. This is not any different for recycled paper.

Fluorescent whitening agent is not lost even when washed or boiled
Among these chemicals, the one that needs most caution is the fluorescent whitening agent. Also called fluorescent bleaching agent, fluorescent whitening agent is added to textiles to whiten it. The chemical does not get rid of grime but instead covers it to make it look whiter and does not come off when washed or boiled. When the fluorescent whitening agent comes in direct contact with skin, it may cause atopic dermatitis, housewife's eczema and other skin disease. Those who argue that fluorescent whitening agent is a carcinogen, state that when this chemical enters the body, it causes harmful, negative effects. The problem is that fluorescent whitening agent is spread through the hands of many homemakers.
Currently, fluorescent whitening agent is restricted in products such as baby tissues and diapers, sanitary pads, and paper cups. However, it is not an overstatement to say that most white products use fluorescent whitening agent. When buying a product, it is nice to look at the product indicator for those that do not have any fluorescent whitening agent, but this too is not favorable. Recycled paper made from a 100% milk pack does not need any whitening agent since it is already white; however, this is not easily found commercially.

Wet tissues too, are not safe
It has become commonplace to carry around not only tissues but wet tissues as well, especially those who have kids. Wet tissues are composed of cloth, water, and additives. The cloth of wet tissues is made of polyester, which is harmful to our body, synthetic fiber, and nonwoven fabric. Nonwoven fabric are called ‘cloth that does not rip.’ It is a type of a chemical product using adhesives that not allows any fiber to disperse. Paraben and formaldehyde, types of preservatives, and propylene glycol, a type of humectants are also added. Fluorescent bleaching agent is also added to whiten the west tissues. It is also subjected to a process of disinfection and sterilization to remove micro-organisms. Wet tissues that contain these substances can cause eczema or skin rash. Remaining water left on the skin may also be possible to cause cancer. Non-woven fabric is also not environmentally friendly and may lead to an acceleration in environmental pollution.
Because of these various problems, organic wipes have been stealing the spotlight. One should choose products with labels including: Non-genetically modified organism (NON GMO), organic cotton 100%, Non-alcoholic, Non-artificial fragrance, Non-fluorescent, Non-formaldehyde, and Non-synthetic oil. The average span of wet tissues is two years; however, it is recommended to be used within six months after opening the package. After opening, it should not be kept in high temperatures, and one should be hygienic in taking out and closing the package.

Using safe products is recommended; however as trees are being used up, we suggest the use of handkerchiefs or cotton cloths.

2013년 11월 26일 화요일

Seoul YWCA News in October 2013

Department for Consumer & Environment
Livestock Processing Field Experience

On October 15 (Tuesday), the chairman and 40 other members of the customer ministry of environment went to Jincheon located in ChungBuk district and went to a chicken processing plant and PoongLim Food’s egg depository for field experience. They observed how eggs passed through visual exterior and interior inspection, automatic quality tests for any blood spots or discoloration to know how the grades of eggs were decided. Observing how the grading of eggs was done, they realized and confirmed the safety and excellence of domestic livestock products.

Department for Senior Citizens
Acting Club ‘Chok’ Community Service Performance

The acting club ‘Chok’ of the committee of elderly culture performed to 30 single elderly on the theme of ‘One fine day in October’ at Bongcheon community center on October 22nd (Tuesday). Single elders who are prone to being alienated from culture enjoyed the performance and at the same time enjoyed their 70th birthday party. The department of elderly culture is recruiting members for the senior play ‘Silver rising’ (inquire at 3705-6097).

Garak Social Welfare Center
Program for Injured Workers to Adapt to Society

At Garak community center complex from September 12 (Thursday) to October 1 (Tuesday), art therapy in the span of five rounds was conducted to help injured workers' social adaptation. Workers, who suffered because of industrial injuries, realized that they had feelings that they didn’t have before and spent time recovering and curing trying to understand others.

Gangnam Youth Center
Gangnam Exciting Saturday

Gangnam Youth Center on October 12 (Saturday) conducted a day of Saturday fun ‘Donong exchange- saltern field experience’ with 35 young adults. They tried to extract salt, make colored salt pillars, and make bay salt soap at Daeboodo Dongju saltern. Soaps that were personally made are expected to be given to the neglected people in our society.

Department for Youth 
ChinChin Sympathy Festival

400 Deshin Middle School students and the youth department conducted ‘POSCO-YWCA: My school is Chinchin wifi zone- chinchin sympathy festival’ on October 19th (Saturday). On the theme of ‘making a healthy school culture’ they arranged a number of booths to enjoy post-it dream tree decoration, face-painting, basketball, dart game, and balloon pump. They also enjoyed experiencing 3 dreams (vision) barista, patisserie, and dance classes.

Bongcheon Social Welfare Center
Day of the Elderly Event

Bongcheon community complex arranged an event ‘happy invite’ on the day of the elderly (October 2nd Wednesday). 100 elders who were present watched a video on the community center’s activities, enjoyed a folk and trot concert and also enjoyed the food that was prepared. They also left with many presents that they received from the lottery and left after enjoying their time at the event.

Seongdong Youth Center

From this past May at Songdong youth center, edu-plus program was organized for 23 Songdong district’s low income middle school students. The edu-plus program offers personal guidance in the course of their studies and also offers guidance in the night through 1:1 mentoring. The program also invites art therapy experts, and offers fitness enhancing programs to help students experience diverse cultural experiences and taking care of students’ health.

Yeongdeungpo Women's Resources Center
Vocational Training ‘Chinese Instructor for Children’

At Yeongdeungpo women resources development center on October 2nd (Wednesday), specialized vocational training ‘children Chinese instructor’ for women with career discontinuities was begun. For women with middle level Chinese conversation skills, the training program helped women with making lesson plans, and teaching aids. It also taught women Chinese characters, and helped them get field experience at kindergartens. Women also got the opportunity to become kindergarten, elementary after-school Chinese instructors. 

Going Back to a Young Girl with Literary Interests

Lifetime Member's Academy, Visit to Hwang Soon Won Memorial Hall 

Seoul Y is an institution with a driving force of 11500 members. Of these members, life members, those who are members until the end, currently make up 1300 members. The age of members varies greatly ranging from two year olds to members who are over eighty.
Life Member Academy started as ‘Life Member Elderly Academy’ in May 2004, composed of elderly, who compose the majority of life members, to offer them a sense of belonging and to offer them a variety of new activities. As more acquaintances and friends participated, the size of the academy has gotten larger and a more variety of members joined. It has therefore become ‘Life member academy’ in 2008.
Every month Life Member Academy organizes movie reviews, poetry readings, lectures by specialists on skin care, Latin dance and first aid programs, organizing activities that are hard to do alone. There is also a culture expedition activity held once every year.

Immersed in the literary world of Hwang Soon Won
This year on October 1st for the cultural expedition tour, 22 members visited Hwang Soon Won’s literary hall ‘Sonagi’ (rain shower). Remembering Hwang Soon Won, who is known for his novel , I seemed to be going back to my high school years. The thrill of getting out of the country, and getting immersed in the literature of Hwang Soon Won brought about constant laughter of the bus ride and endless murmurs. Reaching Yang Pyeong after an hour long bus ride, the sky could not have been any more milder.
First, the member heard descriptions and explanations on Hwang Soon Won’s literary pieces for an hour. Getting absorbed in the literary work of Hwang Soon Won, members could not stop their laughter from the feeling of having gone back to being young girls with literary interests. There were also many works surrounding the literary hall making a trail. Every step felt as if writer Hwang Soon Won was right there narrating his own stories.

A Place for Communication
Life Member Academy president Jo Nam Hee (67) stated, “It has been already 7 years I have participated in these meetings. Every time I come I seem to forget my age. Despite the fact that everyone is not young, everyone seems to enjoy living young and I seem to absorb that energy. I also seem to gain confidence in learning as I read books and learn English. I hope to be able to spend more time with more members in the future”.
Life member Lee Myung Hee (76) who started as a life member chairman in 2003 looked back 10 years and stated, “Through Life Member Academy, I wished to make a place for communication. I feel that my time spent to be very worthwhile as I see members who say that their life has change through the academy, or those who come despite their discomfort.”

Every Monday on the last week of the month Life Member Academy awaits new members. This year they are organizing Latin dance and poem sketch. We hope many life members to participate.

Youth, Heart’s Passion

Bongcheon social complex center: Happy golden years lecture

At Seoul YWCA Bongcheon social complex center, a program for solitary elderly ‘Enjoying our golden years High Five’ was organized for Bongcheon district elderly hoping for a happy retirement.

The humanities lecture has been underway from September 13 through October 18th every Friday for the fifth time. Retirement and fraud prevention measures, old age and leisure, valuable way to spend old age, happy retirement life coaching were some of the things that was being taught. By looking at the topic alone, it may seem like wisdom and knowledge from life, but it proved to be a meaningful time learning how to apply the wisdom and a chance to think seriously think about the issues that are inadvertently overlooked. The invited lecturer was also a retired elder that allowed the lecturer to sympathize and to identify better with the elderly who were present.

Gratifying emotional hunger
Despite just having eaten lunch on a drowsy afternoon in the sunshine, the elderly had twinkling eyes and asked many questions and answers. It seemed like they all were model students in their previous years.
Although the lecture starts at noon, everyone is already on their seats thirty minutes before. Not only do they remember all of the content discussed from the previous lectures but they are already curious about the upcoming lecture. Furthermore all twenty elderly are almost always present. These aspects showed me how great it would have been if I had known in advance of their inner longings.

Elderly life gains vitality
A participant Lee Cheol Ho (72) states “I have a deep resentment towards my youth for I have not been able to learn much. It was hard to make a living back then, how could I have gone to school. I learned Hangeul (Korean) late, but it is very worthwhile to come here to the lecture. I am jealous of our lecturer who has learned and can teach others. By coming here, it gives me an opportunity to think about how to live my later years”.
Another participant Lee Jung Hyun (74) showed much delight from learning and stated, “the poem ‘youth’ that we learned during lecture is the poem I remember the most. I was touched by the fact that it mentioned that even when our bodies grow old if one’s heart is filled with passion it is youth. After the lecture is over, I keep remembering the things we’ve learned so I keep looking at the printouts over again”.

 I send my support to those who attended the lecture hoping they can enjoy their golden years physically and mentally and can spend the rest of their lives valuably.

Seoul YWCA Bazaar 2013 "Happy Together"

Seoul YWCA Big Market Day ‘Happy Together’ was organized on October 17th (Thursday) at the National YWCA of Korea's parking lot and Seoul YWCA. The bazaar is organized every year, but this year the market day has given 3,500 members the opportunity to spend a pleasant time buying thrifty goods displaying a variety of reliable goods and safe foods at friendly prices. This year’s market day was especially filled with foods that allowed Myeong Dong district workers to enjoy lunch under the autumn sunshine; there was also an EM open lecture that was organized between 11-2 pm. A nail art corner was also organized showing off meticulous care of married immigrant, further giving the opportunity for people to send time with multicultural women.

2013년 10월 28일 월요일

Seoul YWCA News in September 2013

Department of Planning 
Tea Time with Policy Suggestions
The Planning Department shares the results of the women policy monitoring group’s activities at the ‘teatime’s policy suggestions, hope spouts’. On September 11 (Wednesday), the first part ‘Seoul cooperative childcare service, present condition and suggestions’ were shared and discussed. Five people of the cooperative childcare team and policy monitoring team monitored the government and Seoul’s work and family compatibility and childcare policy. They also visited each local communal childcare centers, interviewing the person in charge, and proposing a cooperative childcare model ‘living ground’ that all third-generation together is doing autonomously. Teatime’s policy suggestions themes of mental health, father childcare will continue on in October.

Community Service Center
Member’s ‘Saving, Sharing, Exchanging, Re-using’ Bazaar
The volunteer community service center on September 14 (Saturday) opened a Bazaar to construct a shelter for female victims of family violence. Despite the rainy weather, 500 members and citizens participated and spent a significant time at the Bazaar. This day’s profit of 1340000 Won was used to construct the shelter for female victims of family violence.

Department of Consumer and Environment
Camping culture reform campaign
The Department of Consumer Environment organized a campaign in Mapogu Noeul camping ground on the theme of ‘Camping is caring- a lovely relation considering person, nature, environment’ to spread camping equipment business and consumer culture. At the campaign, an advertising pamphlet on camping equipment prices and 10 ways to be a considerate camper of the environment and neighbors was distributed trying to increase camper’s consciousness.

Bongcheon Social Welfare Center
People who hold the village: A photo exhibition
15 village residents who completed their camera training class at Bongcheon comprehensive social welfare center, held a photo exhibition ‘The Photo Making’ in Seoul station exhibition center from September 5th (Thursday) ~ 10th (Tuesday) to encourage their interest in the village. Their works in the form of collages presented the village’s landscape and daily life in a different perspective catching the interests of many residents.

Gangnam Youth Center
We are Gangnam expedition group
At Gangnam Youth Center, 20 elementary schoolers visited Gangnam-gu’s culture heritage. To protect and love cultural properties, weekend-happiness-experience ‘We are Gangnam expedition group’ was proceeded by experiencing the traditional culture. By visiting Korean culture house, learning about Korean traditional paper (Hanji) and learning how to make Hanji hand mirrors, it induced people with the responsibility of trying to protect past cultures that are disappearing.

Sungdong Youth Center
Safe food education
On September 14th (Saturday) the Sungdong youth culture went to Muhak elementary school to educate elementary students on safe food and proceeded with a program which kids made their own healthy drink. 15 elementary students who participated got to know more on safe food and by making their own healthy drink and sharing with family and friends, increased their understanding on safe foods.

Welfare Foundation
Community service work making cotton pads
Together with 18 community service workers, the welfare industry made cotton pads at a poverty area to increase women health on September 28th (Saturday). Community service workers made cotton pads and personal letters that will be sent to Myanmar and Tanzania. Cotton pad making community service work is realized every Saturday of the last month.

Yeongdeungpo Women's Resources Development Center
Advisory conference on job cooperative network

At Yeongdeungpo women development center on September 23rd (Monday), specialized job training ‘international trade worker’ on job cooperative network for women with career discontinuity was organized. Related organization and area of interest specialist were appointed as advisors. Training procedure was appraised and the present condition on the demand of labor and ways of job application was discussed.

Seoul YWCA members are Invited to Happy Dining

Event for Member's Day

Member's Day event took place by Department of Membership Management with 70 members of Seoul YWCA on September 25. Participants could have an opportunity to learn more about Seoul YWCA and understand Y's visions and dreams.

A short movie about Seoul YWCA's 90-year history was shown and participants could find numerous brave women made YWCA of today. After that, President of Seoul YWCA, Ms. Cha Gui Sook gave her opening remarks and a play introducing YWCA was performed by senior play club.
Participants could experience YWCA's various program briefly. Line dance, one of the representative physical education classes, make women's body healthy. EM(Effective Microorganism) class made us think about environment protection.

While the event is going on, participants could look around exhibition on YWCA's sharing movement at home and abroad. They had lunch together talking with other members and wrote some messages to YWCA to hang it on a tree.

Yoon Soo-jin, a member who visited YWCA building for the first time, said, "I became a member of Seoul YWCA because my colleague recommend me to be a member. And it has been 3 years already. I could learn much about YWCA and I am really proud of that I am a part of YWCA."

Remember the Moments of Summer School

20-year history of the Seoul YWCA Summer School for Korean Adoptees in Europe

The World Fellowship Department has published and opened a publication ceremony on September 24 at 2 p.m. about the foreign adoptee summer school that has been organized for 17 years starting in 1990.

The start of the first domestic adoptee program
There was no place that had any program on adoptees in 1990 until Seoul YWCA started its summer school program. When adoptees were sent overseas, there was no other follow-up management. After Seoul Y started this adoptee program, it has started to work on other special adoptee agency’s program of visiting home countries. This raised awareness and lots of places started to have adoptee programs which caused a decline of participants. Therefore, Seoul Y had to unfortunately stop its program in 2007.
In 2010, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Summer School, a Homecoming Day inviting back the adoptees who participated in Summer School was proposed. It was started on February by the World Fellowship committee and subcommittee. 500 invites were prepared and personally sent out but there wasn’t many participants for many addresses and contacting phone numbers had changed. Therefore starting in 2011, the 20 year anniversary of summer school was decided to be recorded which took 2 years until it was published.

Back to the moment
At the publication ceremony, there were 50 participants. Adoptee participants at that time, college community service participants, instructors, past and current world fellowship committee members, and other Seoul Y members were present. Ji Bok Im world fellowship committee member, who was the host, introduced all guests. President Cha Gwi Suk presented a plague of appreciation to Dr. Han Tae Dong, a sponsor and counselor, and to honorary director Hong Geun Pyo. A very touching speech was given by Lee Wong Hee, world fellowship department member, describing the progress that took this booklet to be published. Lastly, through the short clip, I felt the strong urge to go back in time to when we presented each adoptee a chance to visit their home country.

Teens Talk about Human Rights

Project to improve human right sensibility of teens through film

The Y-Teen department organized a project to improve human right sensibility within teens through film. 70 Y-Teen members met on Saturday afternoon (September 7th) to see a film on human rights and to share each other’s thoughts.

Before watching the movie, the bill of rights for students (an ordinance established by each school board to ensure student dignity and worth in school curriculum) was observed with the members. Next, the PD and writer of the film, Esther Kang, explained how and from what perspective the film should be looked at.

“This film considers the question ‘What changes are happening in school after the 2010 Gyeonggi student human rights ordinance was enacted?’ The film further looks at arguments and the current human right ordinance by observing conversations, and conflicts that happens between professors and students in a classroom at Gyeonggi High School. As you watch the film, think about the different situations that are happening in your school.”

New Changes in School
The film takes place in Gyeonggi province showing a very familiar image of high school. After the student human right ordinance was enacted, the film shows images of students going to school and the individualized and personalized uniforms and hairstyles. No punishment was given even if students fell asleep or used their cell phone during class. Every month, students and teachers that received the most penalty marks went climbing at Mt. Jirisan. The principle memorized all of the students’ names and greeted each and every student when they came to school. During the film, interviews were inserted showing the difficulties that students and teachers undergo and professional commentaries which further portrayed the message the film was trying to deliver.

After the film was over, questions students had about the film was written down on memos. Different questions such as “Was there any scene that was staged?” “Did the protagonist of the film go to college?” “Was the film made because someone asked it to be made or was it made voluntarily?” were some of the questions that were asked. The film’s director Esther Kang responded to each question thoroughly and added that she wanted to portray each of the student’s and the teacher’s position. Teenagers responded positively saying that they didn’t have the chance to encounter documentaries so it was a new and refreshing opportunity, and that they hope the film is shown in school as an opportunity to further reflect about the image of school.”

Anyone who is a teenager is welcome
Any teenager living in Seoul could participate in this program that tries to increase sensibility on teenage human rights. Human right sensibility is improved naturally by watching a human rights film, and discussing the meaning of the film with the director and writer of the film. Starting from September, 3 films are prepared which will be shown on October 12 (Saturday. ), and November 9th (Saturday. ).
Those who wish to participate should register at the SeoulYWCA homepage and call us at 3705-6009.