November Volunteering

This month's volunteering event was a Thanksgiving extravaganza. The kids created Native American headbands, hand turkeys, Pilgrim hats and sat down for a bit of face painting. It was one of the best experiences I've had in Korea so far. 

Every time I go to the women's shelter, I'm overwhelmed at how amazing and funny these kids are. They are the sweetest and cutest kids. I could go on about how adorable they are, but I think the pictures will do better.

Seriously, how adorable are these faces? I just want to pinch all of their cheeks, which I did for most of the day. To be fair, it didn't seem like they minded the attention.

This time around there were more volunteers than kids. The turnout was incredible and it was awesome to see so many people sacrificing their afternoons. Although, after spending 20 minutes with them, it's easy to see why it's not a hard sacrifice. Even though many of the kids don't speak English, their actions and faces show all of their emotion.

Kasim, Markus, Steven and Bathroom

Again, Kasim and Markus used their artistic talents to paint and sketch whatever the kids wanted. One of our favorite students, told Markus, Kasim and Steven that he wanted all of their faces on his face. After he was done having the boys painted on his face, he asked Markus to draw me and "tall teacher" on his hands. Words cannot express how much I love him. He's such a witty kid and is always joking around. 

While volunteering I met Jeff, who is the spitting image of a younger version of my brother, Chris. Every time I see him, it's hard not to feel an instant connection since he resembles family. It's actually quite nice to see a "familiar" face.

Me and Min-Gyeongie
I had such a great time with these. There was one girl, Min-Gyeongie, who wouldn't let me go. She kept coming back and hugging me. I think these kids lack a lot of physical affection and when the volunteers come, they see it as a way to fulfill that need. It's a heartbreaking truth, but it's a reality that these kids have to face. 

When I think about what these kids have gone through at such a young age, I get so angry. I look at their faces and ask myself, "why would anyone lay a hand on these children?" I'm so thankful that I can spend time with them. It's humbling to know that these kids look forward to just a few hours with a volunteer.  Although, spending time with them is also a blessing to me. I'm so thankful that I have the opportunity to do something like this while I'm in Korea.