Wednesday 07th December 2016,

Chinese American

Tap Into: American Children Adopted from Korea find Comfort at Summer Camp

posted by Randall

Camp Friendship

Photo from Camp Friendship

Many Asian Americans struggle with straddling the line between being Asian and American. The societal pressures of fitting in and finding your space in society can be difficult, especially for the young.

Some children from Asia adopted into White families have their own unique identity issues.

They may yearn for being closer to their Korean culture while their families look for ways to help their children keep in touch with the culture of their native country.

One solution is a summer camp specifically for children adopted from Korean. Camp Friendship in Stirling, New Jersey attracts children all over the East Coast.

“My experience at Camp Friendship have influenced who I am today by assisting me in understanding myself and accepting my culture,” Alexandria Hudak said to Tap Into. Hudak has attended the camp for 13 years and is now a volunteer. “Being adopted is something unique that before camp, I had zero understanding of. Today, Camp Friendship has helped me embrace my uniqueness and culture.”

Most of the staff and volunteers at Camp Friendship are Korean American or parents of adoptees.

“Without Camp Friendship I might never had explored my culture as much or been as interested in adoption,” said Sarah Cassidy who has attended the camp as a camper or volunteer for 11 years. “It helped me realize that even though a Korean adoptee in Cranford might be a rarity, it’s nothing to be ashamed of. Camp Friendship has been an amazing part of my life the past 11 years and I hope it continues for years to come.”

 
Camp Friendship has a similar camp for Chinese adoptees.
 
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One Comment

  1. Benjamin says:

    RE: American children adopted from Korea find comfort at summer camp: There are a number of resources for Korean Adoptees, especially in the tri-state area. I would also encourge those with older children to consider Sejong Camp (sejongusa.org), which is a week long overnight bridging cultural gaps between adoptees and second generation Korean Americans. In addition, there are adult adoptee organizations in NY, like Also-Known-As, which promotes education and mentorship.

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