Humphreys families, civilians make kimchee for neighbors in need

Humphreys families, civilians make kimchee for neighbors in need

by Binna Hwang, USAG Humphreys Public Affairs
U.S. Army

CAMP HUMPHREYS, South Korea -- Ten Humphreys family members joined more than 100 local volunteers on Nov. 18 for the Sixth-Annual Kimchee Making for Neighbors in Need event at Pyeongtaek's AK plaza.

Sponsored by Korean Rail and the Pyeongtaek Social Welfare Center, the event provided an opportunity for Humphreys residents to volunteer as part of the Good Neighbor Program.

The kimchee-making event provided an opportunity for volunteers to help low-income seniors and encouraged them to help neighbors in need.

"For some people, kimchee might not mean something special but for the lower-income group, it gives a big help emotionally and economically," said Jong Seuk Kim, Chief of Pyeongtaek Social Welfare Center.

"Last year, when I delivered kimchee to an old man, I could never forget the smile and his eyes filled with appreciation. After his smile, it seems that this event gives me more power to make kimchee during this cold season," he added.

For the USFK participants, the event was also a great chance to learn how to make traditional Korean food, kimchee. AK Plaza provided 3,300 pounds of cabbage with 1,100 pounds of condiments.

Amy Brigham, one of the family member participants, said the event provided an opportunity for her and her daughter to learn how to make kimchee.

"My motivation for participating in Kimjang, which is kimchee making for winter season in Korean, together with my daughter was to learn about an autumn seasonal tradition of South Korea and to participate in a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage special and unique to Korea," Brigham said.

"My husband and I believe it is important for our daughter to learn about Korea and her Korean heritage. Events such as kimchee making allow her the opportunity to learn about this beautiful country," she added.

After making kimchee, everyone was invited to have some fresh kimchee and pork dishes. In Korea, there is a traditional custom in which people share foods that they just made after making kimchee and encourage each other for everyone's effort.

Another participant, Army Civilian employee Rianne Tillery, said she thought it was a nice event put together for a great cause.

"The most interesting part was learning from the more experienced kimchee makers how to prepare the kimchee. It was also nice that we were able to come in from the rain and enjoy some kimchee and streamed pork," Tillery said.

The Kimchee the volunteers made on Nov. 18 will be delivered to 150 low-income seniors living alone in Pyeongtaek City.

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