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2018-05-04 Interview, Tutoring

Friday was a slow day at TNKR, so we did a lot of planning. We did have one TV interview in the morning and one tutoring session in the afternoon.

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2018-05-02 TNKR Media

I continue to be amazed that TNKR gets so much media attention even though:

  • We don’t have a media team or even anyone handling media relations.
  • The American co-founder is a former reporter and communications specialist who is more likely to fight with rather than reach out to media.

Despite those limitations, here we are again, being interviewed by a TV reporter who will be doing a 3-minute segment about TNKR. In TV time, that is eternal life.

Check out the TNKR Media Archive here, and look at how much media coverage we have gotten through April 30.

Support TNKR

TNKR Special Ambassador TNKR Ken Eom was interviewed about North Korea and his experience in TNKR. He’s a new father so you can support his online baby shower here. And here is his fundraiser for TNKR, he called TNKR a LIttle Big Hero.

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We had a tutoring session going on, so the reporter also observed that a little. The refugee is often on TV, but she is not the least bit interested being recorded speaking in English. Later, we expect that she will become an advocate for TNKR.

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The reporter also interviewed me. The interview was going to focus on me, but I suggested we expand beyond me. TNKR won’t grow if every interview is about me. Don’t get me wrong, I want to explain TNKR to the media, but I also know that people get tired of seeing one person focused upon.

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We wrapped up with a meeting with international students from the KAIST College of Business. They said some thoughtful things about ways that we can develop a business model.

Join TNKR’s Book Club.

 

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2018-04-26 TNKR around the world

TNKR Special Ambassador Ken Eom was a special interviewee today! Reporters have been calling us for interviews, but a lot of the refugees in TNKR who are usually ready to do interviews seemed to be busy this week (exam week) or not interested in discussing specifics about the summit. Ken answered the call today and had numerous media requests. So you can expect to see a few news reports in the next few days. He did three interviews today back-to-back-to-back before he had to rush off for a different appointment.
 
He’s a new father and also juggling grad school. Thanks to those of you who participated in his online baby shower. You can also send support for their baby adjustment time directly to Ken.
I also had a busy day–a speech in the morning at an international high school, an interview with an international reporter, and an in-studio interview with long-time radio host Henry Shinn.
And I’m proud to announce that TNKR will have its first student club!

I was out of the office most of today, here are the things that I know about:

More photos are below. Read more

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Acting like a reporter

Back in the day when I was a college reporter, I learned that a good reporter talks to at least three sources for an article. Relying on one person is the laziest form of reporting. I used to get surprised by reporters who didn’t want to talk to others, but I got used to it. I don’t mean enemies and ideologues who even hate what I have for breakfast–I mean, even someone who can add perspective and knowledge about what we are doing with TNKR.

I encourage reporters to talk to others in TNKR who have leadership positions. There is some risk in this, because some reporters only see what they see, and they will report the observations of newcomers who barely understand TNKR. A volunteer who stands up and says someone off-the-wall is a great man-bites-dog story. When I look at some articles about TNKR a few years ago, some include volunteers who probably haven’t thought about TNKR in years, didn’t know much about it then beyond their limited experience, and had no idea about things we were planning or dealing with to build the organization. 

This reporter who is working on an online article interviewed me, co-founder Eunkoo Lee, Assistant Director Dave Fry, Academic Coordinator Janice Kim, tutors, and refugees in TNKR. Plus, he stayed for more than 3 hours to observe one of our matching sessions. He has also followed up with questions. He could, like many reporters, get some facts wrong, but it won’t be because he didn’t try to get an understanding about TNKR. It would be because, like most reporters, he didn’t show me the article in advance. As I’ve learned, most reporters would prefer to get complaints about what has been posted or published rather than discussing it in advance to check for misunderstandings. 🙂

Support TNKR

TNKR co-founders Casey Lartigue and Eunkoo Lee were interviewed twice–once for background, then the second time “for real” for the article.

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Casey Lartigue, recipient of Challenge Korea (Global) Award

TNKR co-founder Casey Lartigue Jr. has been named the recipient of the 2017 Challenge Korea (Global) Award. He will be receiving the award at a ceremony at the National Assembly on March 8.

 

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TNKR English Speech Contest #7: My Little Big Heroes

[특파원 리포트] 탈북자 영어 말하기 대회…갈고 닦은 영어 실력 맘껏 발휘 by 김현진.
(reposted by Korean Headline News)
 
By John Max Redmond
The Korea Times
2018-02-26
Elizabeth Shim
United Press International
2018-02-24
 
Join the Teach North Korean Refugees Book Club
https://give.lovetnkr.com/en/Autograph

 

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2018-02-13 Human Rights Forum at the National Assembly–Media Roundup

2018-02-13 경기일보 (Gyeonggi Newspaper)

2018-02-14 United Press International

 

 

 

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2018-02-03 TNKR in the LA Times

Los Angeles Times front page article: Koreas’ unified women’s hockey team has exposed a key difference between South and North — their language

Some immigrants from the North — who risk their lives to leave — face difficulty and discrimination in the South because they lack vocabulary or use differing dialects and accents. Others struggle with cultural assimilation that’s related to language, such as not understanding jokes or an unfamiliarity with pop culture references, said Lee Eunkoo, who co-founded an organization that helps defectors.

“One of the refugees we taught had the experience of being fired from her job at a bakery because she didn’t know the exact bread names, such as ‘baguette,’ ” said Lee, whose group is called Teach North Korean Refugees.

Three-quarters of the North Koreans said official terms in the South — like those for government, banking and medical interactions — were confusing.

“In the North, we try to use Korean in education and sports, whereas here they tend to just use the terms as they are,” said Ken Eom, a North Korean who defected to Seoul eight years ago.

LA Times Front Page_4 Feb (PDF)

LA Times page 4, mentions TNKR (PDF)

 

 

 

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2018-01-10 VOA report about TNKR, in English and Korean

S. KOREAN NON-PROFIT PROVIDING “FREE ENGLISH LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES FOR N. KOREAN REFUGEES,” AWAITS 501C(3) STATUS IN THE U.S.

A Seoul-based non-profit providing free English learning opportunities for North Korean refugees is gaining a lot of attention. Founded in 2013, the Teach North Korean Refugees Global Education Center (TNKR) has provided its services to over 320 North Korean refugee students. Kim Hyun-jin reports from Seoul.

The Teach North Korean Refugees Global Education Center (TNKR), located in a small corner of Seoul’s Mapo area. In a humble room of 15 pyeong, a North Korean woman in her 40s is studying English one-on-one with an American volunteer tutor.

She is still at the level of learning numbers in English, but she carefully listens to her tutor’s explanations and does her best to follow.

Founded in March 2013, TNKR, as its name suggests, has taught English to over 320 North Korean refugees.

Hear from Casey Lartigue, the co-founder of the organization: Read more

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2018-01-10 ZDF Television

*  ZDF Public Television, News segment on TNKR starts at the 24 minute mark (in German), 2018-01-10.

Here’s a summary, as provided by TNKR translator Karin Hanna.