“This is 40 million won that she saved up by having cheap meals and sewing her ragged clothes. She left this money when she passed away.”
The Bonghwa Education Development Committee in North Gyeongsang Province received a phone call on February 23. The caller said he was a monk and said, “An old lady left her will to donate her savings of 40 million won as she passed away. I would like to donate the money to students having financial difficulties according to her will.”
The committee visited the monk and received the donation three days later. The donor was a 75-year-old lady who died from her long illness. The monk did not provide her name and photo because she wanted to stay as an anonymous donor. But she is known to have been widowed, had no children and cultivated a small field in Socheon, Bonghwa County. “We asked for her name many times to deliver her wish to the world, but he refused to do so. It seemed like she wanted the students who would receive the donation concentrate on their study,” said an insider of the committee.
She never muddled away her hard-earned money. She saved heating expenses on cold days and did not even eat what she wanted. People in the village wondered why she used her money so sparingly. They were touched when they found out that she was saving up for students after she died.
“She loved students in the neighborhood,” said the monk. “She used to tell students never to give up their study because of financial difficulties.”
“I thank her for the precious scholarship that she saved up for her entire life,” said Bonghwa Mayor Eom Tae-hang, who is also the head of the committee. “I will deliver it to students who need it the most to admire her will.”
The committee has been providing scholarships worth around 100 million won every year to students in Bonghwa and other rural areas.