"A large land with a lot of people," that is how "Yeoruem's Mother's Vivid Chinese Report", a children's non-fiction that introduces the Chinese culture and society in Korean describes China on its back cover. After living in China for several years, Mr. Song Jung-keun and Mrs Kim Ji-sun, a couple from South Korea, has found their own ways of cultural communication between the two countries.
The Hangzhou-based Sino-Korea Life Insurance has supported the "Ten Thousand Suns," an art project to help special school students by art, for the past five years. "At the very beginning, we offered financial assistance only. From 2018, we have been involved in combining and expanding public service and art projects." said Mr. Song Jung-keun, COO of Sino-Korea Life.
Majoring in sociology, he got a deep interest in of China in university. During the graduated school years, he continued to study China's economy and society. "My first time to China was in 1995 with a four-day tour in Beijing," said Mr. Song. He began to take business trips to China since 2002, and moved to Beijing three years later. He participated in the establishment of a joint venture company and returned to South Korea in 2013 and came back to Hangzhou in 2019, began to serve as the chief operating officer of the company.
Since 2017, the company, jointly with Hangzhou Yanglingzi School, has been publishing a calendar every year composed of pictures drawn by students in this special school.
Last year, besides Hangzhou, the "Ten Thousand Suns" project toured to Dunhuang in Gansu Province, Wuhan in Hubei Province, and Zhangjiajie in Hunan Province. At the end of 2020, a themed public art class was also launched for special school students.
"I saw a gifted boy in the school who showed great talents in painting. The strong colors of his picture really impressed me," said Mr. Song. However, what concerns him most is what they could do after graduation from school. "I hope, through our efforts, they could realize their own social values," Mr. Song added.
During Mr. Song's stay in Beijing, Mrs Kim Ji-Sun also moved to China to join her husband. She attended the Central Academy of Fine Arts and learned Chinese painting. As a staff member who once worked at a publishing company, she translated and published several books in South Korea, including a picture book written by Jimmy Liao.
In 2014, a year after she went back to South Korea, Mrs Kim began to write a book based on her experiences in China. "Yeoruem's Mother's Vivid Chinese Report" was the title, with an aim to help primary and middle school students better understand China.
In 2019, Mrs.Kim came back to China and reunited with Mr. Song in Hangzhou, where she is currently studying Chinese philosophy. "In the future I want to love and enjoy the beautiful lakes, mountains, and unique cultural atmosphere of Hangzhou." said Mrs Kim.