K-Culture Day delivered to Maori Youth in Kerikeri by our Earth Citizen Leaders from Korea


November 12, 2022

Wow, our first K-Culture Day delivered by our four Earth Citizen Leaders from Korea on Saturday the 12th of November was an awesome day of sharing, learning and laughing.

The vision of K-Culture Day is to connect our youth with youth from Korea and then create a platform where culture and knowledge can be shared.

We had 11 Maori youth who varied in age from 10 years old to 18-year-olds and who are students from Northland College, the Kaikohe and Hokianga Kura, Kaikohe Intermediate and Kaikohe East School.

They were so excited to join the programme that they all arrived earlier than the 10am start time including one family who arrived before 9am.

Barom, Gyuri, Chaewon and Soohyun delivered a full day programme that included K-Language & Song, K-Food, K-Games and K-Pop & Dancing.

Chaewon, started our day by welcoming the youth to the Earth Citizens Organisation Office in Kerikeri. Koro who was facilitating the day then covered off the activities and asked everybody to introduce themselves. Once completed Soohyun and Barom took over and introduced our youth to the written and verbal language. The students were taught to write their name in Korean and also many general words and phrases. This activity also included the learning of Po Karkare Ana but in Korean. This is a very popular and respected song in Korea. Why? Because our Maori soldiers who fought in the Korean War taught this song to their hosts while there. This knowledge was passed down and now is taught to children out of respect for those soldiers who came to help during that time.

While this activity was being delivered, Chaewon our Head Chef with the help of Gyuri were busy putting the final touches on lunch. Lunch consisted of two traditional Korean dishes, Bibimbap and Japchae. Bibimbap is a dish of rice served with seasoned vegetables and meat and on this occasion, it was pork mince and Japchae is a stir-fried noodle dish with vegetables. Chaewon, needn’t have worried about anything because the lunch was enjoyed by everyone and in fact there were many requests for more. Luckily the weather gods were on our side and we were able to enjoy lunch outside on the lawn in the sun.

After lunch Gyuri got everyone back into the swing of things and played lots of games. There was lots of laughing and by default lots of exercising. At the end of this session, an NZ ice-cream was definitely a welcome sight it’s fair to say.

The final activity was I think what everyone was waiting for and that was the K-Pop and Dancing activity delivered by Barom who is part of a K-Dancing Group back home and Gyuri. The kids were split into two groups and then rehearsed a dance set. Each group then performed this in front of each other before coming together to perform as one group. They were absolutely amazing.

Before we realised it, it was 4:30pm and time to come back down to Earth and enjoy a sharing session. We were happy to hear that all the kids had an amazing time, as of course did, Chaewon, Gyuri, Soohyun and Barom. Our Earth Citizen Leaders then presented a special taonga to each person and lots of photos followed before parents and whanau arrived at 5pm to take everyone home.

We would like to thank all the parents and caregivers who allowed their kids to attend and then an even bigger shoutout to our kids who were just awesome. You guys rock.

We would also like to thank the Earth Citizens Organisation Charitable Trust for supporting this opportunity and for allowing us to use their office to deliver this inaugural K-Culture Day.

It was so successful that we have decided to deliver another K-Culture Day on Thursday the 15th of December.