We were invited to present at a meeting of the Korean-American Parents Association of Greater New York (KAPA-GNY) / 뉴욕한인학부모협회 last week in Flushing, Queens.
KAPA-GNY, established in 1990, is a nonprofit education and community advocacy organization led by co-president Yoon Hee Choi (Christine Colligan). The organization is “dedicated to promoting active participation of Korean-American parents in the public school system, building a relationship based on mutual respect and understanding among students, parents, teachers, and public school officials, and advocating parents’ and students’ rights, which may not as yet be fully realized due to cultural, linguistic and educational differences between the United States and Korea.” KAPA-GNY has a strong social and political voice supporting the many Korean-American families in Greater New York.
Our presentation at the KAPA-GNY meeting was a unique opportunity to share our company’s mission and products with other Korean-American parents who are actively engaged in their children’s education and growth. We presented mostly in Korean, so it was a learning experience for me, Victoria, to give a full presentation in Korean to a Korean audience. We shared how we came up with the concept of Doogaji, our real-life inspiration for our characters, and our vision to celebrate our children’s bicultural identities and instill pride in their Korean-American heritage.
We received a warm welcome and very encouraging feedback. They loved our characters and said we are fulfilling a wanted need in the community. One parent I spoke to said that her children speak Korean fluently since she, her husband, and her mother (children’s grandmother) have spoken Korean to them at home since birth. However, they haven’t been able to teach their children how to read in Korean. So products, in addition to the books, that would help teach Hangul would be very helpful to their family.
Our presentation was a meaningful introduction to the community of Korean-American parents of KAPA-GNY, and we hope to build a strong relationship with them as we grow.