It is such a joyful and exhilarating feeling when you cross paths with people you fall to admire and just simply love being around. You don’t exactly know why you enjoy being around them but their presence and energy gives you goose bumps; giving you hope for life and humanity. I am forever thankful and privileged to have spent the time with the Korean Special Olympics’ Basketball Team. They were such a thoughtful and kindhearted group of people. The coaches were so caring and attentive to their athletes and it showed how much the athletes also love and trust their coaches. They taught me and challenged me to be a better person and to do more for others. What makes this team special and unique is that half of the team members are orphans. When I first heard this, I was very surprised. Because to be honest, I assumed all athletes came from a loving family with abundant support. Actually, I anticipated that they might even be spoiled. So you can just imagine how stunned and sad I was when I received this information. After the initial shock wore off, I recognized this as an opportunity for Ban-Suk Foundation to support the team and to make sure that their stay here would be over-flowing with love and laughter. We seriously had a blast together and formed everlasting friendships.
While spending time with the team, I realized I wanted to continue the beautiful relationship we had begun. I expressed that to the coaches and they also agreed that it would be amazing if we stayed connected with the team. After the team left, I received pictures and information of the school and the orphanage from the head coach. Ban-Suk Foundation has been searching to help orphanages in Korea for a while. As you know, we’ve made few trip and visited many orphanages but it has been difficult to find that perfect match. We find it amazing that through volunteering for Special Olympics, we made this perfect connection. Ban-Suk Foundation is all about having relationships with the people we serve, so when this opportunity came our way, we knew it was God-sent and also our dreams coming true. Ban-Suk Foundation will be sponsoring six athletes by sending monthly support to each for their daily and future needs. Our hope and prayer is that by our sponsorship, our new friends will know that they are not alone and that they have people who are truly rooting for them.