Jenn Seoyoung Kim’s medal award-winning project, Plant Haiti Campaign, is designed to bring much-needed trees to communities in Haiti. Here’s how she describes it:
Haiti, which was once covered in lush green forests, has now decayed into a barren wasteland. An enormous amount of trees were cut down constantly in a matter of decades to produce lumber for mainly industrial use, including charcoal as a domestic cooking fuel. The value of greenery seemed to be forgotten as Haiti was undergoing a vicious cycle, where trees were being planted only to be cut down. Plant Haiti Campaign recalls the potential beauty of Haiti by supporting Haitian communities to grow and maintain Moringa Trees. The miraculous nutritional values of this tree can easily overturn the course of Haiti’s future. When products within the Miracle Moringa Collection, inspired by the artisans of Haiti, are purchased, part of the revenue goes to NGOs in Haiti to help reforest the nation as well as educate Haitians about the importance of trees.
What inspired you and motivated you to do this project?
Last summer, I went to Haiti for two weeks on a mission trip from church and realized how critical living conditions are there. The earthquake in 2010 brought too much sorrow and despair that still lingers in Haitians’ minds and lifestyles. I wanted to provide a long-term solution that could help Haiti to get out of this environmental crisis and eventually stand up on its own.
What part of the process of creating this project did you learn the most from?
I learned the most from researching through various methods and applying those techniques to better enhance my ideas. Especially, our class schedule included weekly presentations that helped me to keep track of my directions.
What part of the process of creating this project are you the most proud of?
I’m proud of the fact that my project is based on long-term considerations and a result of my own experience. By addressing a real problem for the most needed,Plant Haiti Campaign connects many aspects all together to harmonize and recreate the value of greenery.
How did you react to the news that you won a medal for your work?
I wasn’t expecting a call from OCAD U, so my heart stopped for a second when I heard the word “congratulations.” I cried for three hours. Every time I told my family and friends about the result, I couldn’t stop crying (happy tears).
What’s your fondest memory from your studies at OCAD U, and what will you miss the most?
I miss the days I spent in woodshop making furniture and other projects with fellow students. Technicians and monitors were friendly to help out and overall I loved its warm atmosphere.
What are you planning to do next?
My next step is to further enhance my skills and build more experience as a designer.
Find out more about Jenn Seoyoung Kim: