A house filled with pain from a disaster turns into a house in bloom with hope

Intl. WeLoveU Foundation(Chairwoman Zahng Gil-Jah) celebrates the completion and opening of houses for flood-damaged families

Last August, all parts of Korea were hit by floods due to a long rainy season and record breaking rainfall. As the Seomjingang River overflowed due to torrential rain that poured down in Gokseong-gun, Jeollanam-do, 830 houses were flooded, and it resulted in 1,300 flood victims. A few months after that, majority of the residents gradually recovered stability, but they still went through economic difficulties.

In order to help the flood victims get back on track, the Intl. WeLoveU Foundation supported for a multicultural family who lost home due to the floods, through the “Housing Matching Grant” program which improves the residential environment of the vulnerable, in cooperation with Gokseong-gun Office, Community Security Council in Gokseong-gun, and Jeonnam Community Chest of Korea.

The beneficiary family was a husband and wife in their 60s in Sin-ri, Gokseong-eup, Gokseong-gun, Jeollanam-do, Korea. They were making a living through government support, but their house got totally flooded last summer. The framework of the old house made of earth became noticeably weak after it got flooded. The outer walls were cracked and the pillars were shaky, signaling the danger of demolition. The wet wallpapers and floor covers were taken off but were not yet replaced; so the couple was using a single room.

The Intl. WeLoveU Foundation and Gokseong-gun Office decided to tear down the house and newly construct it for the couple to live in a safe and pleasant environment. The demolition began on November 7, and a local construction company started building a new house in earnest on December 1. After two months of the construction work, a house (49.5 m² [533 ft²]) with neat appearance was built up. The WeLoveU provided 10,000,000 KRW [appr. 9,000 USD] for housing construction and participated in the entire process, including field investigation.

On February 24, the completion and move-in ceremonies were held in front of the new house, attended by the WeLoveU staff, Yu Guen-gi the Governor of Gokseong-gun, Jeong In-gyun the President of Gokseong-gun Council, Noh Dong-il the President of Jeonnam Community Chest of Korea, and Lee Yun-hui the Head of Sin-ri. That day, the WeLoveU additionally donated a TV, a quilt set, and a nest of bowls. As the members wished that the new house would be a home of love and laughter, they donated a signboard which reads, “A HOUSE IN BLOOM WITH HOPE.”

An official from Gokseong-gun Office said, “I was worried about how they would spend winter as their house was gradually breaking down. I felt troubled because there was no proper way to help them, but the WeLoveU held out a helping hand and it was of great strength to us all.” All the villagers who were also worried about their situation greatly rejoiced over the WeLoveU’s help for them. Wishing that the elderly couple’s future would only be filled with happiness, the members were determined to continue their volunteer services that convey new hope to their neighbors in need.