15th Year Anniversary Message

Hwarang announces its 15th year Anniversary!

About 2000 Hwarang members have emerged as community leaders in various spheres including as college students and professionals with budding careers. Each Hwarang member has been proudly emerging to world upon positive appraisal of one’s own identity—and dignity that comes with it. While founding of Hwarang Youth Foundation did not come easily, I drew strength from the hope to improve the sociocultural struggles many Korean American youths experience, as my own children have. I founded the organization because I wanted to be able to raise our children as proud Korean Americans living with dignity. Over the 15 years, this ambitious project grew internationally and have expanded to support youths from multicultural background.

It never ceases to impress me how much the Hwarang members are willing to share and give, only if they can find the right venue and reason. Each Hwarang member has served the community as a part of local chapters. Their services reflect their alliance to and responsibilities for the local and national community. For what good is inheriting wealth or even fame if our children are ill-equipped to use them appropriately? Would it not be better for our children if we left the legacies of love, responsibility, self-reliance, so on?

The Boy Scout, as an organization boasting 110 years of history and has served as the vessel to instill leadership, cooperation, and responsibility in numerous youths, are said to have left a timeless legacy enjoyed by many as compared to other communities without a such program. We at Hwarang Youth Foundation aim to engage our youths to strengthen and celebrate their multicultural identity. The magnificent artifacts of Korean heritage—Seokguram Grotto, Gyeongbokgung Palace, and other great historic sites— reflect the triumph and resilience of Korean people amidst the turbulent history. The history also offers tales of virtues we believe could aid our youths regardless of who or where they are. Specifically, we evoke the legacy of Shilla Hwarang as the inspiration for Hwarang Youth Foundation. As one of the earliest youth organizations founded over 1500 years, Hwarang offers guiding principles that we can pass along the next generation. Like the Boy Scouts, Hwarang Youth Foundation have and shall continue to support our members flourish and develop into leaders dedicated to following the Five Beliefs of Love.

Thank you.

August 08, 2019
Howard Y. Park, Ph.D.