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2014-09-21 Mulmangcho 2nd anniversary celebration

Wow, what a wonderful time! The Mulmangcho School (for Adolescent North Korean Refugees) opened on September 28, 2012, I started volunteering two weeks later. Prof. Park Sun-young asked me to teach English to the children, but I declined. Instead, I suggested to her that I might be able to find some teachers who would ENJOY teaching the students. I wasn't sure I could find anyone, but I told her that I would do my best to find teachers.
Most weeks, we have between 5 to 8 volunteers show up to teach North Korean refugees kids.
They honored me on Sunday by giving me another "Certificate of Appreciation," having me as part of the cake cutting ceremony, singling me out on another occasion. I also had a chance to swing dance to entertain the kids, which seemed to have impressed the adults (the kids probably would have preferred real magic).^^
Thanks to my substitute dance partner Ginny Min-Jin Song, a new volunteer who has already volunteered at the school, been the translator for a refugee interviewed for a documentary, and, Sunday morning, was willing to dance on stage even though this was her first time to try swing dance (I taught her then led her). She's also the person who has taken on the impossible mission of improving my Korean. Good luck to her.^^
Special thanks to other special volunteers-Cielo Yoon, Maynard Villamer, Grace Stables, Serena Ha. They have all added something special to the school. Cielo, for a while, was the liaison who helped us avoid chaos. Maynard was the super teacher/guitar teacher who brings an incredible amount of energy to the school. Grace Stables (Sarah) shares her horse farm so the kids can go horseback riding once a month. Serena joined when she heard me talk about Mullmangcho at the Sunday Discussion group we are both members of...
FYI, I mentioned Sarah in one of my columns months ago.…
Some of our other valuable volunteers: Rachel Stine, In-Jee Lee, Luna Yoon, Naomi Chambers,
Welcome to Greg Salvo, Peggy Inkorea, Julia, Kyung Ho, Kim Kyun-soon and Mike Ashley.
Many teachers and volunteers have come and gone during that time. Now year three starts. For me, that means chasing teachers who wait until the last minute to sign up, dealing with changes and cancellations, late arrivals calling me after the bus has left asking me where I am (My response: "On the bus."), occasionally some teachers who grumble about me asking them for a resume and application, oh, and emails every week from people interested or just curious.

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