Volunteering is Addictive!
Volunteering is Addictive!
  • Kim Ji Hyeeun / Reporter
  • 승인 2011.09.14 20:43
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She is not one person. It means she has many jobs.  On weekdays she is pharmacist and helper for the poor near us.  On weekends she is a doctor for many foreigners who came to Korea for earning money.  Also, she is a writer once a month. She takes pride in her life and is very much content.  She enjoys her life achieving her goals and mottoes. At first, she wasn’t able to work in Kileum, her hometown. However, she came back soon, she has worked there since.  She loves her birthplace, a place where many people don’t want to go.  Why does she prefer a place that many people hate?

SMT Many people who want to be a pharmacist said they will live richly.  However, you haven’t lived that life, but lived a volunteering life until now.  Why did you choose this?  Do you have special reasons?

LEE The first reason is that I love this town.  That makes me live and work here.  Also, when I was a student of SMU, I acted a student volunteer.  I think it affects me these days.  If I look back to that period, I would do it again.  The next answer is though people’s appearance is different between elegance and simplicity, the most important thing is what’s on the inside.  And helping other’s people is a happy thing.  Living along with others is valuable.  Also I want to live with doing what I want and like.  Maybe it is the driving force of my present life.


SMT From 2010, you have been writing the “Mi-a ri letter” in The Kukmin Ilbo.  Why did you start writing it? What’s your purpose this letter?  Throughout this letter, what real benefit is returned for the poor?

LEE As previously stated, I love my hometown, Mi-a ri.  I saw every course changed from a beautiful town to an adult entertainment district.  Throughout that process I also looked at the poor nearby me.  I thought that I’m the only person who can do something for those people.  Even though their behavior deservedto be criticized, we should recognize their life.  From that, I wrote this letter.  The main characters of my news always comes from people who live around me and my customers.  I want to tell their life and open their story into our society. Recently, one of my protagonists gave many help to many people.  A reporter in The Kukmin Ilbo covered his case and made an account for helping them.  So I have been managing and giving them that appreciation.  My purpose is helping the poor by speaking through letters.  I felt so great when people took other’s aid.

SMT Supplying drugs for people is substantive volunteering.  What supports are needed and helpful for this?

LEE In the past, I volunteered in Inchon.  However, I have been volunteering here now.  In natural talk, drugs are very lacking. So, if someone wants to help, please contribute medicine which they want.  They prefer certain drugs. For example, there are plaster, gum remedy medicines, and vitamins.  Already I have given them those twice a month, but the demand is still high.

SMT Recently, the law that people can buy some drugs in the market is under way.  What do you think about that? Can that policy really help people?  What’s your opinion?

LEE That will never be helpful to people.  The reason is maybe most people who will use those are the poor or children.  The poor should work all day, so they can’t go to a hospital for treatment.  Then mainly they will buy drugs in a market.  It causes many problems.  Drug addiction will be increased and poor people will suffer.  So I think making public medical centers would be more beneficial.  Many pharmacists could help people there by assigning right dosages.

SMT By living here, many women go into the dark cave as you see.  Many organizations for women have started to help them.  What do you think about those activities?

LEE In short, this problem is a hot potato.  It is hard part to help them properly.  There are many complicated matters which they are supposed to resolve.  For instance, women’s problems are associated with society and their life.  Absolutely, no one can solve that problem.  That is a fundamental thing in our community.  So you should not blame and backbite those women who are working in brothels.  To my knowledge there are a lot of single mothers, divorcees and devoted daughters who can’t earn sufficient money for their lives.  Of course, there are extravagant girls, also.  However, because of just those types of girls, all of them should not be criticized.  Before that, social interest is needed.


SMT Now a days, the becoming a pharmacist is much harder.  Many students are preparing ‘PEET’ to achieve their dreams.  Pass along a request to those students in SMU.

LEE Please, to be a good pharmacist. People call me ‘teacher’ or respectfully ‘druggist.’  I always tell my clients how to take medications and other food.  Especially, I focus on care of health.  So I study everyday about the human body besides new drugs.  I’m very happy to hear their title of honor to me.  So I want my juniors in our school to pay attention to people above all things like money.  People who need medicines are usually sick their minds, too.  Druggists must see that part and cure their inner hurts, also.  It is my motto in life and my advice for future chemists.  In addition, don’t slight studying and be an early bird.  If you do those things, you can attain all of the things you want to get.  The most important thing is to be a humane pharmacist, then wealth will followed.  I believe that and it is natural.

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