- Sookmyungians offer a warm helping hand to overcome Coronavirus-19
Sookmyunginas offered a warm helping hand to Daegu City citizens who are going through a difficult time due to the spread of Coronavirus-19.
Sookmyung Women's University's students and graduates have been raising funds to overcome Coronavirus-19 via online community since February 28. Approximately 67 million won in donations have been received by March 3rd, and when the fundraising is completed on the 5th, the donations will be delivered to the Daegu Social Welfare Community Fund and Korea Disaster Relief Association.
In particular, this fundraising started with the suggestion of a student from the Sookmyung Women's University’s Division of Korean Language & Literature, and the fundraising received great response from the community, raising 30 million won in just one day. A total of more than 3,700 Sookmyungians, including current students and graduates, made a united effort through small donations. It is very unusual for a large amount of donations to be collected in such a short period of time and for such a specific agenda in a university town.
Sin-yeong Jeon (Division of Korean Language & Literature ‘18), the first student to propose the fundraiser, said, “I first started the donation with a goal of about 10 million won, but I was amazed by the warm response from the people as donations exceeded the target amount by more than 6 times in a short period of time,” and “I hope that the slogan of Sookmyung Women's University, 'Power of Compassion to Change the World,' will be passed on to help restless neighbors and medical staff and volunteers who are experiencing dangerous working conditions due to the spread of Coronavirus-19.”
The following is a Q&A interview with student Sin-yeong Jeon.
1. I am curious as to why you volunteered to begin a donation for Coronavirus-19.
When I heard that there would be a surge of infections starting with patient 31, I went down to my aunt's house, who lives alone in the mountains because I thought the remote location will be safer than the city. I felt very vulnerable when a person was infected within 1km radius of my home. When I thought about the payment I was to receive from a part-time job in the middle of the night on March 28th, I suddenly felt the urge to donate the money. I thought it would be more meaningful if I donated in the name of Sookmyung Women's University, so I posted the idea on the school community bulletin board that night. Fortunately, all of the comments were positive. So, on the 28th, I officially took the responsibility of conducting the Coronavirus-19 fundraising activity.
2. What is the current fundraising status?
On the first day, 10 million won was collected in just 3 hours, and in less than one day, the amount raised exceeded 40 million won. By the 3rd day, over 3,700 Sookmyungians participated and raised over 60 million won. What was even more surprising is that only one person donated more than 300,000 won. Although everyone donated in small amounts, I’m proud to say that the precious donations made by the participants recorded the highest number of participants among all universities nationwide.
3. What was the reaction of the people around you?
When I uploaded my first post, around 973 likes and 358 comments were posted on the Everytime bulletin board alone. Most of the comments were encouragements and appreciations such as “Thank you for stepping up. It's a small amount of money, but I hope it helps,” and “I’m with you. Thank you for stepping up.” Subsequently, students who participated in the donation wrote hashtag #Sookmyung Women's University Coronavirus-19 donation posts along with photos confirming their donation transfer, which led to a donation relay. The school also contacted me and sent their words of appreciation and encouragement. In addition, when depositing donations to the account, people added messages in the depositor name line such as “Keep up the good work!” and “Thank you for stepping up!” These messages have become a valuable experience that again showed me the joy of sharing.
4. How do you plan to use the donation?
Since it is a donation started to overcome Coronavirus-19, the entire amount is planned to be donated to the people, medical staff, and volunteers who are struggling due to the Coronavirus crisis. The donation department decided to send 50 million won to the Daegu Social Welfare Community Fund, and the amount collected beyond that is to be sent to the Korea Disaster Relief Association.
5. Is there anything you want to add?
When I was writing a self-introduction letter for college admission, I found that the real “me,” which I’ve learned through my research on ego since high school, was the happiest when I helped easily overlooked underprivileged people around me. Instead of practicing donation on my own as in the past, I am honored to take part in volunteering and donation with the students of Sookmyung Women's University. It was a great opportunity to experience the power of Sookmyung, which was far greater than I thought, and I am happy to welcome the spring of 2020 with the moment when everyone became one in heart and mind.
I sincerely hope the gentle power of Sookmyung that will help others in times of need and change the world will reach far and wide. I also hope this donation can help the restless neighbors and all the medical staff and volunteers who are working under dangerous conditions due to the spread of Coronavirus-19. I hope this fundraising activity will exert a good influence on the world. In addition, I wish good health for all Sookmyungians, alumni, and faculty members living in Daegu.