Girlene Tan and Evonne Ee Feng returned from the 4th World Youth Camp richer in experience. The event held from 19 to 24 July 2012 in Seoul, Korea saw the participants enjoying themselves while training, learning and meeting new friends with common interest in taekwondo.
Said Girlene: “The camp which was mainly based in Muju where the World Taekwondo Park would be located, attracted participants from 34 countries.
“Evonne and I made many friends. It was easy to communicate with those who spoke English and Mandarin. But for those who did not, we exchanged smiles and greetings in their language.
“The kyrougi trainings were conducted by Korean University Professors. They focused on drills and sparring techniques.
“For poomsae trainings, I was overjoyed to be taught by my idol, Master Song Nam-Jeong, a world poomsae champion. We learned breathing and execution techniques which allowed us to move with style and stability.
“Most of all, we were inspired by Sheila Radziewiez who was a guest speaker hailed from Boston. She was born with a rare congenital disorder called TAR (thrombocytopenia absent radius). Despite here disability, she was able to earn her black belt. She shared with the audience her challenges and how she overcame them.”
In a letter of appreciation to the Singapore Taekwondo Federation (STF), Evonne wrote, among other things: “Thank you for giving me the chance to participate in the Camp. The trip has enlightened me to the vast world of taekwondo and also the various training styles.
“I have learned the importance of humility and will treasure the opportunity given to me by the STF.”
The 5th World Youth Camp will be organized next year by the Taekwondo Promotion Foundation. By then, the Taekwondowon’ in Muju would have taken shape.