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MCSM “We Came To Help, But We Learned a Lot More”
For the first time, the Maha Council for Supporting Migrants (MCSM) went on the International Volunteer Program rather than supporting immigrants in Korea.
From August 15~21, MCSI (President, Ven. Jikwan) visited Hans Welfare Foundation in Western Sri Lanka along with Center for Visually Impaired in Matara Southern region. The team offered medical services, education, and housing repair activities under the direction of President from “People Making Dreams Come True”, Ven. Jino. There were 30 participants from 4 organizations for this event: “People Making Dreams Come True”, “Asian Bright Community” from Gwangju, “Korea YBA”, and “Suncheonhyang University Gumi City Medical Hospital Volunteer Team”.
“Ayubowan (Hello) Sri Lanka” visited immigrant worker’s original countries to experience their life situations and to provide more systematic support for people in need. Moreover, this was the first step for the NGO to broaden its territory and work as an International Relief Organization.
The first services offered on the 16th were educating the children living in Korean Sri Lankan Cultural and Social Foundation and offering medical help by the volunteersfrom Suncheonhyang Medical University. The MCSM workers also visited Wiklamashilla Temple near the village and invited monks to receive free medical and welfare services.
Prior to the treatment, 50 of the Sri Lankan nursery and kindergarten children welcomed the volunteers with vibrant shows which gained a very happy round of applause. The co-president of MCSM, Ven. Doje said in his introductory message, “Thank you for preparing this grand welcoming ceremony for the volunteers” and added, “Through this opportunity, we would like to provide more help to the community”.
Ven. also stated, “The children living at the center wake up at dawn to help out. This is quite different from Korean Children so I was very touched by their efforts.” and added the following comment, “We are working under extreme conditions in different country we are not familiar with. We pray to the Buddha so that we may complete this mission well.”
Mr. Lee Taeil, the Director of the Gumi Hospital volunteer team also stated, “I was able to participate in this volunteer program through my monthly volunteer work for the “People making dreams come true”. He also said in his testimony, “I am happy that I could help many people with my small capabilities. I came to serve, but it seems like I have learned al lot more.”
Ven. Myodeok from the foundation also stated, “Thank you very much for coming to help the residents and children,” and added, “I hope you will participate in this program with a happy heart.”
The volunteers left Incheon Airport Korea on the 15th morning and had stopovers in Hongkong and Singapore before arriving “Korean Sri Lankan Cultural Social Welfare Foundation” the next day afternoon.