‘Francisco’s Neighbours’: new project addressing urban poverty in Korea
Members and volunteers of the Order of Malta Korea are continuing their work to address urban poverty in Korea. The most recent initiative has commenced operation in the Changsin-dong and Soongin-dong area, both known to have poor living conditions and no aid or support from any other organisations.
There are about 700 small-sized sewing factories in Changshin-dong and Soongin-dong, producing goods for the clothing shops in Dongdaemun. The town is on the slope of steep hills and is severely underdeveloped compared to other residential towns in Seoul and is home to many low-wage workers.
The centre, called ‘Francisco’s Neighbours’, was inspired by the Holy Father Francisco’s countless remarks on serving and loving our neighbours and the Order of Malta Korea intends to assist the most marginalised households located in the area.
Whilst the premises were being renovated, members and volunteers of the Order began to provide fruit deliveries as part of a weekly service to those in need in the district.
The centre’s renovations finished in November and the premises were consecrated by H.E. Cardinal Andrew Yeom. When COVID-19 restrictions allow, the centre will expand to provide cooked foods and laundry services to those in need.