By Naomi Yakawich
Partnering with UNICEF and UN Habitat, Global Peace Youth (GPY) Korea and the Korean International Students Services Association (KISSA) gathered forty international students from thirty different countries on May 17-20 in Seoul for a series of workshops and campaign projects to inspire “one dream, one Korea, one world.”
The three-day One Korea camp educated youth on Korean history and the urgent need for Korean reunification, and creative ways they could bring awareness to the cause, including a “mannequin challenge” performance at Kyungbok Palace.
Lee Dukhwan, representative of the Youth Division of UN Habitat, addressed the international audience, urging them to become messengers of peace in Korea. “I hope your experience doesn't only teach you about Korean culture, but helps you become the champions for peace and reconciliation. You can be people who carry the message of peace in Korea and the world.”
Lecturers and workshop participants alike voiced appreciation to present the reunification issue in an international forum, exposing both the global threat of a divided Korea and the positive opportunities reunification can provide on the world stage.
The camp culminated on May 20 with a tour of Kyungbok Palace. Students arrived on the palace grounds dressed in traditional Korean garb, ready to promote One Dream for One Korea in a filmed mannequin challenge, intriguing both local and foreign visitors and drawing interest to the campaign for Korean reunification.
Peace Fidele, a student from Rwanda, reflected, “Performing in the One K mannequin challenge was a beautiful experience. I connected to the dream for peaceful reunification of the Korean peninsula and realized its important role in global peace.”
Costume experts describe the Korean hanbok as a symbol of respect. The combination of straight and curved lines and natural material and color demonstrates the subtle but dynamic beauty that results with the wearer’s movement, revealing harmony and unity, which is at the core of the Korean spirit.
The sight of youth from a wide ethnic spectrum in Korean traditional dress captivated onlookers with a powerful message: the Korean Dream is not just for Korea, but the world.
Watch the highlights below: