The Korea Herald


Clothing drive aims to help Seoul Station homeless

By Korea Herald

Published : Dec. 24, 2013 - 20:12

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Two expats are leading a drive in the Seoul area to collect winter clothes for homeless people.

Linda Lam and Abigail Flores are collecting backpacks, blankets and warm men’s clothing in the Seoul and Paju areas that will then be distributed to people sleeping rough around Seoul Station.

The two are both active in PLUR, an expat volunteering organization that has groups helping homeless people, disadvantaged children and abandoned animals. Lam said that the clothes will be handed over to Help Your Seoul, which will give them out in partnership with a local homeless center.

This is the drive’s first year, and Lam said it began very small with an extra act of kindness by a PLUR member.

“She was volunteering at Help Your Seoul and she saw a homeless person who was not well dressed for the weather at the time, so she ended up taking off the sweater she was wearing (she had something else underneath). She gave her sweater to a homeless person,” Lam said.

After that, volunteers began taking similar items with them when they volunteered, and the clothing drive is an extension of that.

Lam explained that they were not looking to collect pillows, as they were impractical for the recipients. Future efforts may include fund-raising, but she said that at the moment they were not accepting money.

“If someone wants to make a cash donation it would be better if they go spend that money and buy something and then give that to us,” she said.

Lam said she is available to collect donations in the Goyang and Paju areas before 1 p.m., while Flores can collect them in the Itaewon area before noon or after 6 p.m.

Donations can also be dropped off at the Bull and Barrel pub in Itaewon.

For more information, see the Facebook group “Wanted: Sleeping Bags, Blankets, Backpacks and Men’s Winter Clothing & Shoes.”

By Paul Kerry (