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Translating Volunteer Service
Written by Minji Kwon | Published. 2020.06.23 08:11 | Count : 532

As the novel COVID-19 emerged, volunteer activities have been suspended over the last few months. Many service centers and facilities lack many volunteers, and they are coming up with strategies to overcome this dire situation. One of the ways is through ‘translating volunteer service’ for childhood cancer. This service provides the opportunity to do meaningful activities to help childhood cancer. It also gives me a vast volume of volunteer information that is happening all over the world.

This volunteer service gives an idea of how other communities worldwide are coping with childhood cancer on behalf of children undergoing childhood cancer. To support those movements against childhood cancer, I contacted Korea Pediatric Cancer Foundation. I met Mr. Paul, the head of the team in Daejeon.

[Photo of the Korea Pediatric Cancer Foundation Homepage; Photo by Minji Kwon]

Mr. Paul expressed gratitude to the volunteers who donate and use their talented language abilities to help children. He noted that he was amazed by the number of people willing to share their talents as he continued to recruit volunteers in Korea. When asked about the motive of initiating this service, Mr Paul said, “I found out that simple volunteering such as writing a hopeful message or staying next to the children did not help. I believed that many talented people all around the world could simultaneously help children and share their visions as well as pursuing their dreams.”

Mr. Paul also pointed out that there is an increasing amount of people during COVID-19 who are willing to participate in this activity: “I usually get calls from 2000 to 3000 students per year. Now, as students don’t have many chances to volunteer outside of their house, there are more and more people who contact me for translating volunteer service. What I strongly believe though is that the number of people who volunteer each year does not matter. What really matters is whether those people have sincere passion towards volunteering.”

Whenever I contact Mr. Paul for a new topic suggestion, he provides me with specific rising topics. Last time, I translated a series of articles regarding the job of the hospice. I first searched any type of articles regarding hospice care. Then, I started translating the articles into Korean. After I translated, I filled out an information chart where I cited, when it was written, and my thoughts. These are then posted to ‘Teenbridge’, a pediatric cancer homepage, where Mr. Paul can check my translations. Others translate many different topics such as cancer cure drugs or how pediatricians coping with COVID-19.

[My translation activity; Screenshot by Minji Kwon]
[Teenbridge Homepage; Screenshot by Minji Kwon]

I have been participating in this service for over two months. However, whenever I start translating an article, I cannot figure out how this translation will help those children with pediatric cancer. So, when I asked him about how my translating volunteer service will help others, Mr. Paul responded, “I get at least three thousands articles each year about childhood cancer. As students provide me with the information that is happening overseas, I can collect and propose that information to Korea Pediatric Cancer Foundation. Based on the data that students provided, we process them by discussing and even following some effective services abroad. But remember. You are not only helping children with pediatric cancer, but also helping yourself as you acquire more helpful information.”

[Photo of the interview with Mr. Paul; Photo by Minji Kwon]

At the end of the interview, Mr. Paul said that he is so proud of everyone pursuing their dreams and showing care to other children. He said that he finds his job meaningful whenever he sees lovely people like me who are willing to help others. Mr. Paul and the Korea Pediatric Cancer Foundation are looking forward to making the whole community brighter as more affectionate volunteers reach out to help, even online.


Minji Kwon
Sophomore (Grade 10)
Seoul Scholars International

Minji Kwon  student_reporter@dherald.com

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