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[MBC Giving Hope] Korean Actress, Hye-Sook Lee, Goes on Her Very First Volunteer Trip to Africa


Last winter, Korean Actress, Hye-Sook, went on her very first volunteer trip to Niger, a country located in West Africa.


This was Hye-Sook’s very first volunteer trip overseas and she cared for and loved on the children of Niger. She tells us stories of four children she met during her stay in Africa.

The first child she met was a 11 year-boy named Hassan. Hassan has dealt with complications due to malnutrition since birth. He was never able to walk or use his arms freely. Due to the lack of financial assistance at home, Hassan was never able to go to the hospital.

Hye-Sook met Hassan for the first time when she visited him at school. Although he didn’t seem any different from other students in his class, she noticed that he was using both his hands and feet while going back home. When she saw this, she carried Hassan on her back and walked him home. When Hye-Sook talked to Hassan, he didn’t blame his situation and also didn’t complain. He told her that he’s going to study hard and not give up on his education.

The second child Hye-Sook met in Africa was a 10 year-old girl named Haruna. Haruna makes about 200 bricks a day using mud. Three years ago, she left home to find a job and hasn’t returned home since. Hye-Sook visited Haruna at her work and gave her an opportunity to visit her home again. Unfortunately, when Haruna went back home, it was empty. Both her mother and younger sister left to the city to find other jobs to make a living.  

The third she met was a little girl named Maria. Since she was 3 years old, Maria started to have rash all over her body and eventually became unable to see. She visited the town’s clinic to find out the cause but was unable to do so. Her eyes continued to have excruciating pain and turned completely white.

Hye-Sook brought Maria to an optometrist clinic in the city. After the results, they discovered that she needed to go through surgery and that there was a way to cure the problem. In a very long time, Maria put on a smile on her face.

The last child Hye-Sook met was a 14 year-old girl named Patuma, who lives with 7 younger siblings. Patuma lives a very busy life every single day. After school, she prepares meals, cleans the house, does house chores, and makes a living for her family. Patuma and her siblings sell plants and leaves in exchange for food. In the times they are unable to sell, they go around town to ask for food or end up starving. Hye-Sook prepared a special meal for Patuma and her siblings. She cooked rice and vegetables for the kids. They put on a very happy face after she prepared the meal for them. Even in the most difficult circumstance, Patuma and her siblings still managed to study very hard. They continue to be very hopeful for their future.


“With small gestures and a loving heart, we can work together to bring hope to these children who live in difficult and tragic circumstances.” - Hye-Sook Lee


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