Post 3: Encouraging Others to Help Find Dreams

KKOOM supports approximately 130 children at Samsungwon Orphanage and Emmanuel Children’s Home. Beyond holiday and summer activities and events, we provide scholarships for preschool and college students. By providing financial aid to Korean orphans both beginning and ending their educational journey, we open doors to academic opportunities otherwise unavailable.

In South Korea, toddlers begin attending preschool at the age of two. However, due to lack of funding, the South Korean government does not subsidize preschool for orphans until they are four years of age. Since 2011, KKOOM has provided access to early education, helping eliminate the education gap and thus leveling the playing field for orphans as they proceed through their education.

HyungJun when he first came to Samsungwon v. Hyungjun 2 months later

HyunJun is one of our preschool scholarship recipients. When he was eleven months old, HyungJun arrived at Samsungwon Orphanage in Gumi, South Korea. Now almost two years old, he is the youngest child in his home and — thanks to KKOOM supporters — thriving in preschool. Only sixteen pounds when carried into Samsungwon, HyungJun is now a normal weight for his age and, as evidenced by the pictures below, enjoying life. Read this interview with HyungJun!

KKOOM also provides college scholarships. Yonghoon (a rising third year) is at World Cyber University, majoring in social welfare. According to an interview with KKOOM, Yonghoon desires to work at Emmanuel Children’s Home in Gimcheon, South Korea. Another student, Minyeal, recently graduated from World Cyber University with a degree in pastoral studies. Lastly, Se-Hee (a rising second year) is majoring in hotel tourism. Her dream is to work abroad. Se-Hee shared that “with the KKOOM scholarship funds, I will apply for a special course to improve my English proficiency.” These are just a few snapshots of students KKOOM has supported over the years.

It is only through the support of family, friends, and strangers who believe in our mission that KKOOM is able to support these beautiful students. Our long-term goal is to provide educational support for as many orphans as we can, for as long as we can. To that end, our small steps as an organization come in the form of widening our donor base and securing recurring donations.

During KKOOM’s annual board retreat in Los Angeles this past weekend (June 29 – July 1), I had the opportunity to share my perspective as the youngest board member. A specific small step I have put forth is for KKOOM to reach out to college students and young professionals to try to gain their support. As the youngest member, one of my tasks in July is to draft suggestions on how to build rapport and find faithful supporters among my peers.

I’m hopeful that as our organization continues to help Korean orphans find their dreams, we’ll encourage others to join us and to do the same.