Subject Of Famous Photo To Kick-Off Month Of Kindness
Phuc is the subject of a Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph by Nick Ut taken on June 8, 1972, as she is running down the street naked and screaming in pain. Nine-year-old Phuc was living in Trang Bang when the village was attacked with napalm by a South Vietnamese plane during the Vietnam War. Phuc’s experience during the war and years of burn therapy led to her collaboration with Ron Gibbs to create the Kim Foundation.
“Kim Phuc is known as a national symbol of the Vietnam War, and I believe she is also an icon for kindness,” said Allison Demers, a UConn junior who is executive co-chair for the Month of Kindness 2004. “The organizations she created out of her tragic experience have changed the lives of many children and I am certain her positive attitude will leave a lasting impression on this campus, especially during our time of war.”
The Kim Foundation, a non-profit organization, began in Chicago in 1997 as a way to promote world peace and give children hope of recovery. The Foundation, and similar ones developed by Phuc, is organized under the Kim Foundation International to provide support for children victimized by war and terrorism. Children are provided with therapy, medication, wheelchairs, and prosthetics, as well as many other services.
Phuc’s lecture is sponsored by the Student Union Board of Governors. Refreshments will be served and donations can be made at the door. A book signing will follow the presentation.
The Month of Kindness Committee chooses a kick-off speaker every year. Past speakers include Dan Palotta (CEO of Palotta Teamworks), Arun Gandhi, and Patch Adams.
The Month of Kindness committee members hope to show people everywhere that college students are taking initiative in changing their world for the greater good. The committee also sponsors an a cappella charity night, to take place on Nov. 13 at the Storrs Congregational Church, at 7 p.m.
The Month of Kindness was established at the University’s Hillel to unite the campus under the common theme of kindness. The program promotes random, unselfish acts of compassion and consideration, as well as tolerance for other people. November is designated as the Month of Kindness. Begun at UConn in 2001, the Month of Kindness is now observed on many college campuses.