Save the dates!

Dear all,

The Lunar New Year is almost here and we are excited to connect with you and create a unique space for us to come together. As we continue to strengthen and build community, please come out and join us for the upcoming events that will be taking place here in the Los Angeles area. Make sure to mark your calendars!

Save the dates!

February 19
Dual Citizenship Information Session
Join us as we skype with former G.O.A.’L. Secretary General Dae-won Wenger who helped lead and pave the pathway for the Dual Citizenship Campaign. Learn more about Dual Citizenship and engage in Q&A. Betsy Schaffer will also be joining us via Skype from Santa Barbara, and will introduce and discuss the new GOA’L USA.

Time: 3:30pm
Location: Andrea’s place

February 19
Korean BBQ Dinner
Following the Dual Citizenship Information Session join us for an evening filled with meat, veggies, beer & soju.

Time: 6:00pm
Location: Moodaepo II
3014 W 7th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90005

*Street parking or valet available
Please contact Patrick Lindsay with any q’s at:

March 12 – THIS DATE HAS BEEN CHANGED to 4/30!
AKA SoCal Book Club
Join us as we come together to discuss Elena Kim’s Adopted Territory. It examines the history of Korean adoption, the emergence of a distinctive adoptee collective identity, as well as the return of adoptees to South Korea and their unique effect on South Korea’s modernization and globalization.

Time & Location: TBD (more information will follow)

Past Book Club reads:
Fugitive Visions: An Adoptee’s Return to Korea
Trail Of Crumbs: Love, Hunger and the Search for Home

April 30
AKA SoCal General Meeting in Los Angeles

Time & Location: TBD (more information will follow)

Korean Drama & Discussion Night featuring “I’m Sorry I Love You”
“I’m Sorry I Love You” (미안하다, 사랑한다) is a Korean drama that aired in November 2004 and quickly became one of the most highly viewed dramas of all time. The story line is about a Korean overseas adoptee who was raised in Australia and returns to Korea in search of his birth mother. Through a twist of tragic events, he finds out he only has three months to live and must decide whether he wants to confront his birth mother before he dies. This drama was a huge hit in South Korea and has sparked a lot of discussion in the netizen (internet citizens) community regarding overseas adoption. However, this drama can be seen as being problematic in that the Korean overseas adoptee is being represented in a very melodramatic way, which evokes both pity and sympathy from the viewers. Another concern among overseas adoptees who have watched this drama is that the main actor playing the Korean-Australian adoptee is in fact Korean; therefore, depicting no real language barrier during his initial return to his birth land.

For those of you who are interested in watching this drama, you can go to to watch it with English subtitles. We hope to watch one episode or clips of this drama during our meeting and possibly discuss the following themes:
• Representations of Korean overseas adoptees in the Korean media
• Common Korean perceptions of adult Korean overseas adoptees who return to Korea
• Other dramas, music and/or movies in Korean pop culture with focus on and/or reference Korean overseas adoptees
• Experience vs. Representation
Time & Location: TBD (more information will follow)

More information will continue to flow into your inbox as we continue to solidify details. Until then, if you have any questions about the upcoming events, please feel free to reply or contact us at:

Warm regards,
Andrea & Robyn

Association of Korean Adoptees of Southern California, Los Angeles Chapter |

January 22, 2011 General Meeting & Book Club

Wow, what a terrific turnout for the first General Meeting of the year.  Kudos to all who were able to attend! There is much positive energy and good stuff in store for AKA-SoCal for 2011. Make sure to check back often for more information regarding upcoming activities in your area.

It was truly a beautiful afternoon to get together and discuss  “Trail of Crumbs” by Kim Sunee.  This Book Club is a terrific opportunity to participate in healthy, spirited dialogue, share and listen to personal experiences of your fellow AKA-SoCal KAD’s  and, of course, to partake in the the fabulous snacks and treats our AKA-SoCal group is known for. The next book the Club is reading is ” Adopted Territory” by Eleana J. Kim. More details are forthcoming.

LA Marathon Fundraiser for AKA-SoCal

My wife and I recently moved to Southern California.  Immediately, I thought what better way to see my new hometown than to run the local marathon!  So, on Sunday, March 20th, I will wake up in the wee hours of the morning and run from Dodger Stadium to Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica (as they say, from the “Stadium to the Sea!”).  If you are interested in learning more about the LA Marathon, click the following link:

Inevitably, during the race, I will hit a wall – my body and mind will be fatigued, my legs will feel like jello, and I will begin to daydream about all the yummy food in my refrigerator that I could be eating while lounging on my couch at home! I will wonder: “Why did I ever sign up to do this crazy thing?”

That’s when I’ll remember that I am running for a cause!  It’s the greatest motivation; truly.  Envisioning all the good that will result from my efforts immediately reminds me the struggle is worth it.

Please click the link below to support my run to raise funds for AKA-SoCal:

And next time around, there will  be more of us, right, Andrea, Robyn, Lee Anne, Carolyn?

Korean Adoptees Welcome Arrival of G.O.A.’L

First Office Outside of Seoul Launched in Santa Barbara
Monday, January 3, 2011
By Susannah Lopez

A launch party was held Thursday evening, December 30, 2010, to celebrate the opening of a Global Overseas Adoptees’ Link (GOA’L) branch office in Santa Barbara. GOA’L assists Korean adoptees living in America in efforts to return to and experience Korea. This is the first office that the nonprofit organization has established outside of Seoul.


LA Chapter Update!

Happy New Year!
Cheers to the year of the white rabbit.  Hoping 2011 is off to a beautiful start and now that the holidays have simmered down we wanted to send out more information about some upcoming events and community goodies taking place within the KAD community here in SoCal.

Save the date!

January 22nd
AKA SoCal Book Club
This month’s book: Trail of Crumbs by Kim Sunhee
Time: 1:00 pm
Location: Lee Anne Maki’s house

January 22nd
AKA SoCal General Meeting in the O.C.

Time: 3:00 pm
Location: Lee Anne Maki’s house

Community Goodies!

  • ‘Tis the season for membership dues!  Now you are able to pay your dues directly online with PayPal. AKA SoCal membership fees are now $24 for the whole year.  Not too shabby!
  • Help support LA adoptee Mia Beinhorn’s new Adop(teens) support group.  Please help spread the word to any teen adoptees you may be connected to in the SoCal area.  More information can be found on Adop(teens) facebook page.
  • Global Overseas Adoptees’ Link (G.O.A.’L) recently launched their U.S. site in Santa Barbara.  G.O.A.’L. USA hopes to provide support and advice about Korean culture, trips to Korea, language scholarships, adoptee programs, birth-family search, and other topics sooner and more easily to US adoptees than they can with G.O.A.‘L Korea.  For more information please contact Betsy Schaffer at:
  • On January 1st, 2011 Dual Citizenship passed in South Korea.  In the Fall of 2007 G.O.A.’L. Korea began the Dual Citizenship Campaign and worked fast & furiously to pass this unique piece of legislation for Korean Adoptees.  Former G.O.A.’L. Secretary General Dae-won Wenger is available to help answer any questions you may have regarding this.  Please contact him at:
  • For those who are curious about Dual Citizeship we would like to coordinate a Skype video conference with Dae-won for a Q&A.  If you are interested in participating in this please contact Robyn or Andrea.  Make sure to continue to check the G.O.A.’L. website for more information and in the near future they will be uploading online the Guidebook To Dual Citizenship For Korean Adoptees.

That’s it for now but we will continue to keep you posted on other goodies.  Due to there being a quarterly general meeting this month we will plan on setting our next LA Chapter get together for February.  Stay tuned for more information & we hope to see you soon!

Andrea & Robyn