Our Affiliated Project: The Ae Hyang Children’s Home in Gimcheon, South Korea
Comprising the lower half of a mountainous peninsula in East Asia, South Korea is truly a nation of contrasts. Although it emerged as an autonomous country in the aftermath of World War II, its rich culture and heritage reach back thousands of years.
Today, this populous nation (with a population density ten times higher than the global average) is renowned for its future-oriented advancements in technology. However, more than half a century after the Korean War armistice, South Korea is still haunted by the ghosts of its turbulent past. The Korean War (1950-1953) devastated South Korea, claiming hundreds of thousands of lives — both military and civilian — and leaving thousands of children orphaned.
Like many South Korean orphanages, Ae Hyang Children’s Home (whose name means “Love Your Neighbor”) traces its origin to efforts to address this postwar crisis. Located about 120 miles southeast of Seoul, Ae Hyang Children’s Home continues its mission of providing orphaned and underprivileged children in this region of South Korea with a safe, nurturing home environment, nutritious food and medical care — while instilling the values of honesty, integrity, compassion for others and dependability.
Many of the children who come to Ae Hyang Children’s Home learn for the first time in their lives what it means to be loved and looked after. Here, each child receives respect, encouragement — and the opportunity to rise above the difficult socioeconomic circumstances from which s/he has come.