It’s late at night, and it’s cold in a dark alley in Seoul, South Korea. A heap of trash shifts slightly and a baby starts to cry. She has Downs’ Syndrome. Unable or unwilling to care for her, her parents have abandoned her. The Drop Box, a new documentary from Focus on the Family Canada, tells the story of Pastor Lee John-rak’s mission to save rejected or disabled babies like this little one.
It all began 29 years ago, when a special baby, Eun-man, was born to Pastor Lee and his wife. Their new son was severely-disabled, and Eun-man spent the first fourteen years of his life with his family in the hospital. By the time he was released, Pastor Lee and his wife had taken in several other children with special needs.
Then people began to leave babies at their gate, often exposing the infants to severe cold. As word spread and the children kept coming, Pastor Lee built a drop box. Mothers anonymously place their child in the box, sound a bell and leave while Pastor Lee runs to collect the child from the other side of the wall. The babies are often still bloody from birth with umbilical cord dangling.
Facing an unexpected pregnancy is difficult. Caring for a child with disabilities can seem like a monumental task. Sometimes mothers believe there is simply no other option; as one terrible situation revealed, it’s either this or poison for both her and her child. But through its intimate look at the lives, personalities and singular beauty of these children, the documentary asks piercing questions. It forces us to self-examine our own culture. But The Drop Box also offers hope in the midst of extraordinary difficulty.
The Drop Box is being shown in Canadian movie theatres on March 4 and 5. Further information is available at thedropboxfilm.ca