Last weekend the German KADs gathered the second time in Bonn for the KADAY. This event was the first time completely organized by the end of 2017 newly established Korean Adoptees in Germany Association (“Koreanische Adoptierte in Deutschland – KAD e.V.”).
Already on Friday, first guest arrived, including our guest from Sweden and Belgium. Thank you for taking the long journey and your presents! We used that time for getting known each other and meeting old friends with tasty Vietnamese food and later karaoke in an Irish Pub.
On Saturday morning the gathering officially started. Some KAD have done DNA-test – thank you 325Kamra/Jayme Hansen for the donation, while others attended at the parallel workshop Hangeul/calligraphy session.
Afterwards, a workshop was held, which focused on finding future activities, topics and issues for the German KAD meetings. Results of the initially restrained, but then more and more vivid discussions, were:
- (Parallel)Program for partners of adoptees at future gatherings meetings (partnership, understanding and how do I support my partner)
- Contact for adoptees in crisis
- Binding/relationships/relationship to the adoption family
- Own program for children of adoptees
- Interpretation/completeness of the original documents from Korea and the adoption documentation
- Family search, how to, tips and tricks
- Understanding the adoption background (economic interests in Korea, selection of children in the orphanages that have been approved for adoption)
- DNA workshops next steps after testing
- Workshop Korean Culture / Cooking
- Workshop Koreanische Kultur/Kochen
We try to include as many of these topics as possible with suitable speakers in the next meetings. (Neighbouring organizations, feel free to recommend speakers to us).
In the afternoon, our two guest speakers Melanie Kleintz and Youngeun Koo led deeper into the issue of adoption. Melanie emphasized that adoption is a lifelong process that affects us into adult life and even influences our own families. But also pointed to ways to deal with the backgrounds and behavior patterns. A workshop will take place at the beginning of July with Hilbrand Westra . Youngeun presented parts of her work for her PhD thesis and introduced to the background and history of Korea’s oversea adoptions and the history of the first orphanage in Seoul.
Before the evening program was still the opportunity to try out Korean drums, which were later used at the musical opening of the evening.
The evening program was supported by민주평화통일자문회의 (National Unification Advisory Council) and The Embassy of the Republic of Korea, Bonn Branch. Thank you for the generous support! Consul General Keum presented the history of Korean-German relations and showed similarities between the countries. He also wishes for a stronger exchange between the adoptees and the Koreans in Germany, referring to the many Korean communities in Germany, which offer a good opportunity for cultural experience. A large number of members of 민주 평화 통일 자문회 의, some of them with a long journey from abroad, were present to gather with us! Thank you very much for this effort!
After the very delicious Korean buffet, KAD e.V. let the evening end with a raffle, which was made possible thanks to many private donations and karaoke afterwards.
Sunday morning, the joint brunch went into a relaxed exchange on travel to Korea and literature about adoption. In addition, the first ever general meeting of KAD e.V. took place. Due to many new members, a vivid discussion about future topics/focus of the association was possible.
Many thanks to all participants – especially the international participants, the speakers and both supporters, 민주 평화 통일 자문회 의 and Embassy of the Republic of Korea Bonn Branch, for the generous financial, logistical and organizational help, as well as to all private donors and 325Kamra/Jayme Hansen for the continuous support.
There will also be a third edition of the KADAY next year. For this year, a smaller gathering in the Rhineland / Ruhr area with the support of the embassy in autumn, as well as further workshops and small meetings in other regions are planned. In the medium term, our goal is to meet the admission criteria of the International Korean Adoptee Associations (IKAA) and to participate in a global exchange of information among Korean adoptees.