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Good Will Hunting
From JoongAng

June 27, 2002

By Ahn, Joon-Yong

As the funds for the New York City non-profit organizations have decreased, Korean non-profit organizations are facing operating budget difficulties.

According to Korean Community Service, the New York City government curtailed the funds right after the 9/11 incidents, and this has created an urgent need for financial support.

Due to the discontinuation of the New York City government funds, Korean Community Service has operated their free medical insurance consultation program with money directly coming from their own organization.

The head of the public health center at Korean Community Service, Kim Sung Ho, said "Every year, we have been receiving seventy thousand dollars from the government to provide free consultation programs to Korean Senior Citizens. With sudden decrease in funds, however, we had to go through some internal restructuring such as laying off many full time employees." He also added by saying that "with persistent lobbying during May and June, we were finally able to receive funds from the government in July."

Kim said, "After the terror, there have been drastic curtailment in the budget of the public health and the education division." And that "If government reduces the funds so suddenly as in this case, we have to depend on our own ethnic community."

Chung Hae Sook, the head of the Domestic Consultation Center, also said that her organization has requested ten thousand dollars to Queens borough as financial support after the terror, but was not successful.

An assistant of Chung added with deep disappointment, "Most importantly, we need help from the people within our ethnic community. Since last year’s 9/11 tragedy, even the numbers of general sponsors have declined as well"

Yoo Chul Won, the head of the Korean Community Service for Senior Citizens said, "Since the 9/11 tragedy, the New York City government has cut the funds for the two instructors of the English language program, and we are now receiving funds from other non-profit organizations. We are expecting more cuts in our budget for the Korean Senior Citizens programs in the coming fiscal year"

Yoo also said, "If the economy continues to stagnate over a long period of time, there would be more drastic funding cuts in the near future. Considering this, it might be a good idea for Korean non-profit organizations to form joint programs with Korean churches and provide various programs at cheaper cost."

In addition, Korean Community Service stated that Korean community should embrace the idea of a "donating culture" which is very prevalent in Chinese community.

Priest Park Soon Tak, the head of the Family Consultation Center emphasized that "Non-profit organizations should not only depend on the funds provided by the government, but the organizations should also put more effort into cooperating with their own ethnic community.

Translated From Korean by Julia Yook

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