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2017-09-28 18:32
By Kim Jin-hyun



Ms. Kim manages Bethany, a private school for people with disabilities, in Yeosu, South Jeolla Province. The school has a unique curriculum owing to its use of practical methods.

In the early 2000s, she had taken a course on caring for and feeding of children with nursery school workers in Busan. One of the topics of this course was ecological discipline for children, a teaching method that heals the bodies and minds of children  with paralysis. Soon the old woman began to practice the program.

First, the manager coated all the school’s walls with thick yellow soil and helped children study on the clean areas. And she borrowed mountain areas for students’ playgrounds and permitted them to play there.

Next, she encouraged the students to eat pro environmental foods by cultivating them with workers and herself. In addition, she treated children with only boiled water mixed with barley.

Her learning policy improved the students’ lives immediately. Up until that point, every day, some students had been taken to a hospital due to an urgent situation; but after her sensible decisions, the number of patients decreased. One year later, no student had ever been sent to a hospital while in school.

In fact, the lifestyles of the children in the school had been sensitively controlled because of the children’s disabilities and health problems; after realizing that the enhanced school surroundings and food had improved the students’ health significantly, she has expanded the children’s boundaries.

One day, on a trip to Jeju Island with members, Kim had a chance to travel to the clean and beautiful Jeongbang Falls. A guide said the once polluted falls had been cleaned thanks to numerous effective microorganism (EM) balls, which provide antioxidants to and assist in purification, and resuscitation of bodies of water. Helpers  make the EM balls and have continuously thrown them into the falls.

After listening to the moving story and making a social enterprise with colleagues producing soaps and cleansers with EM material, the female encouraged all workers to wash the facilities with cleansers in the school buildings. Understanding that nature-friendly material makes life clean, she supported the workers to practice in their houses the same way they do in the school.

On weekends, for a few years, she threw EM balls into polluted streams and lakes in Yeosu to help purge them of chemicals. But her economic situation caused her to stop doing so.

In fact, one of the reasons she began leading an “ecological life” was that every type of food people eat had been cultivated with chemical fertilizers and pesticides. In that point, the weakened children’s prominent health change after nurturing them with clean soil, dish, and water caused her to be a ecologist.

She also says that any citizen can improve people’s lives through sustainable and popular ways, such as growing vegetables in empty gardens in the city, utilizing public transportation and not using disposable sticks or cups.

Nevertheless, unless citizens change their lifestyles, it is difficult to keep a city clean. Thus, Kim sets a good example with her practical methods. She was motivated by the belief that if the average temperature on earth rises by one degree, crops would not grow well lands dry up.

Thus, her simple dream to help prevent global warming motivated her to keep the environment clean. Going by the proverb “a butterfly’s wings can cause a typhoon,” this woman’s life and efforts can be a catalyst to changing citizens’ consciousness.

 

The writer works at Jeonnam Natural Science High School in South Jeolla Province. Write to shinykim60@daum.net.

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