International Korean Adoptee Associations

Arierang

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Official Organization Name: Arierang

Location / Region Served: The Netherlands

Year Founded: 1991

Member of the IKAA Network Since (Year): Founding Member

Mission Statement:
Arierang (아리랑) aims to represent the interests of Koreans who have been adopted to the Netherlands and their families; in the broadest sense.

Arierang supports research on adult adoptees and the importance of post adoption services on national and international level. Our extended network includes adoption-agencies, Korean companies and government bodies, research and counseling institutes and (inter)national adoptee associations. We also improve the visibility of adoptees in the Netherlands and their specific needs and circumstances by involvement in special art projects and finding media exposure.

Brief History:

Arierang was founded in february of 1991 by a group of about 30 Dutch adoptees. Since then over 1200 of the approximately 5000 Korean adoptees in the Netherlands have been in contact with Arierang. Arierang has strong bonds with Dutch as well as Korean organizations either commercial businesses and not-for-profit or governmental organizations.
Arierang consists of a minimum of 3 board members (the chairman, the secretary and the treasurer). The board is supported by a number of committees. Arierang is entirely volunteer based.

Founded in 1991, Arierang has seen approximately about more than 1,000 Korean adoptees through the last 15 years. The first generation of Korean adoptees has reached the 40-ies and the youngest generation is still in their early childhood. Arierang has struggled with changing of board members many times and still depends on the unpaid volunteering efforts of her members. Furthermore, the financial position depends on the membership fees, donations and gifts. Many Korean adoptees in the Netherlands shared their experiences as a Korean adoptee with each other and made friends for life. Most important is, there is such an association as Arierang where Korean adoptees can meet any time when they want and when they reach that point in their life they start getting interested in discovering their Korean adoptee identity and decide to meet with other Korean adoptees.

Regular Activities:
– 3-monthly meet-ups in a different province each time.
– Children’s activities take place once or twice a year.
– New members are welcomed once or twice a year at a special Introduction Day.
– Adoption related discussions and or movie screenings take place regularly. We try to match up every event with an adoption related discussion or lecture when possible.
– Sometimes we meet just for fun and go cooking, something sporty or nerdy.
– Seollal (Korean New Year | 설날) and Chuseok (Korean Thanksgiving | 추석) are celebrated each year, often in collaboration with the Korean Society in the Netherlands.

Social activities
– Weekly gettogethers with real Dutch ‘gezelligheid’ [some sort of cozyness] in one of the regions.
– Activities just for fun like soccer, beachvollyball, children’s day and introduction meetings.
– Yearly events such as The Arierang Weekend, New Years Party and Watersports

Korea and adoption related activities and services
– Korea Information Markets co-organized with Shilla Travel, on which members get acquainted and informed about the possibilities of visiting their birth-country.
– Varying theme-discussions about roots traveling, searching for and meeting birthparents and adoption issues
– Korea Cooking Day, so we never forget the kimchi.
– Arierang offers for all members of IKAA free professional translation services on the basis of ‘as is’.

Publications:
– A beautiful magazine called Uri Shinmun (our newspaper | 우리 신문). The Uri Shinmun team is independent of the Arierang Board to support their objectivity and to prevent censorship.
– There is also the Arierang newsletter which you can signup for at our website.

Official Website: www.arierang.nl

Facebook: www.facebook.com/arierang.nl

Twitter: @arierang_nl

Organization Email: info@arierang.nl

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