Children and youth from North Korea in Lower Silesia and Mazovia in the years 1951–1959

Łukasz Sołtysik
Original title: Dzieci i młodzież północnokoreańska na Dolnym Śląsku i Mazowszu w latach 1951-1959
Śląski Kwartalnik Historyczny Sobótka 2010

The author researched the issue of North Korean children and youth who came to Poland and stayed here in 1950ties. The Koreans came to Poland within the special action what was one of the form of help provided to Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) by the government of People’s Republic of Poland. The Polish state took on the duty of caring of and educating the Korean orphans, who were to be brought up for idealistic communist activists. They were to be educated in a modern style to become specialists in various professions. After coming back to DPRK they were expected to join reconstructing the country actively. Almost all the participants of the programme came to Poland in the autumn 1951 and in the second half of 1953. They lived and learned in Gołotczyzna near Ciechanów, Świder (both towns in Mazovia), in Płakowice near Lwówek Śląski, Szklarska Poręba and Bardo Śląskie (all three towns in Lower Silesia). Altogether the number of Korean newcomers reached 1611-1631 persons in the years 1953-1954. The author concentrated on some main issues: financial help for the Korean orphans, curing them (they suffered from parasites especially), methods of education and care, relations between Polish and Korean staff and generally everyday life in the State Education Center in Płakowice. The whole action was suddenly stopped by the Korean authorities in 1959.


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