Hello from Malawi | Road to Rio | Archery | Full Documentary [EN Subtitles]
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Hello from Malawi | Road to Rio | Archery | Full Documentary [EN Subtitles]

August 19, 2019


Archery World Cup – Antalya, Turkey Last May, at the Archery World Cup in Antalya in Turkey. among the world’s best archers, there were some special athletes competing Two archers from the developing country of Malawi, Africa There is something different about this team Mark Abell, 19, Malawian archer My coach, who is come from Korea, her name is Park Yeongsuk The coach the Malawian archer proudly mentioned is Korean coach, Park Yeongsuk She was a legend in the 1980s, with Kim Jinho and Seo Hyangsuk And won six gold medals at Asian Championships She has been working as an international judge and national team coach since Last Autumn, she left for Malawi, Africa Do you like staying here? Of course, there are no words to describe it Many relief charities name Malawi as a region of poverty But there are faces in this land that do not show despair Four young men who put their future in archery! and coach Park Yeongsuk gave them her life Hello Malawi! From archery coach Park Yeongsuk Malawi, Africa The land you reach (from Korea)… after 30 hours of plane rides, and three transfers In Malawi, Gumulila is known to be one of the poorest areas Last Spring, reporters visited when the tobacco farming season was ending After harvesting the tobacco the tall stems have to be cut down There are people who have come to collect these tobacco stems They load the stems they’ve cut onto the back of a truck These kids, who look like farmers… …are Malawi’s archers They take the stems to the archery practice grounds We wondered what the stems were for… It turns out that they are the material behind the target Here she comes… Park Yeongsuk, the coach who arrived in Malawi just over a year ago… to teach archery in Malawi Oh my word, can you bring the hammer all the nails are pulled out This shouldn’t be broken already, but it is They cannot afford to buy targets so they make their own Farming and hammering these young athletes have many skills! This was made 20 days ago, with tobacco stems we harvested this year but they are already very dry that’s why they’re breaking Tobacco stems cannot survive in the heat if not maintained, the arrow might pass through the target and break or cause an accident After adding new tobacco stems they put egg containers and paper boxes and straw and mud in a bag and hang the bag on the tobacco stem target they stick on a target and they’ve finished making a Malawi-style target! It may be hard, but it’s satisfying All four archers are practising hard all day Coach Park arrived in Malawi last November This is the first time she’s coached beginners… …after teaching many world-class archers Athletes like Austin, who’d never held an arrow before… …she had to teach from A to Z You need to do the same all the time Sometimes you do this, sometimes this If it’s different, you can’t make a good group She even uses her cell phone to correct their posture I want to show you but it’s too dark It’s not clear, but this shoulder has too much tension and is too far outside so,you need to relax, ok? She has to check not just technique, but the equipment as well Areneo changed his bow just a few days ago and this is his first time shooting 70 metres with this equipment He learned how to shoot now he has to hit the target Six o’ clock, low, slow down! These four young men are working to become Malawi’s first international archer under the careful watch of coach Park Yeongsuk Ten! These days, she’s getting concerned for the upcoming international competition They will shoot 70 metres and we have a long way to go this Archery World Cup may be a bit of a stretch for them they should shoot more at short distances but we don’t have time I’m thankful that they practise hard Wow, John shot a 10? 10-10-9? If the wind is strong you have to aim off, at three o’ clock, ok? But how did coach Park come to be in Malawi… A few years ago… she first visited Malawi with coach Suk Dongeun She learned that her experience might help these under-privileged young people Before I came here, I thought I’d volunteer for just a year But I thought it would be a really good, to be a proper help to this young men so I decided to stay until the Rio 2016 Olympics and I decided that four years would be enough But since becoming their coach… …there have been things that have bothered coach Park Can you take off this one? Here you can see stiches where Mark sewed it, because the sole fell off Whoa, you sewed that, too? Let me see: John says he sewed here as well. There’s a hole here, and here too… See that, it’s another hole… The young men wear second hand shoes their coach has bought for them until they break completely On another hot day, class begins in the shade They’ve never been to school, so she teaches them English Coach Park is becoming a real teacher to these young men Her efforts make her more of a life coach rather than just their archery coach Austin Brinton, 19, Malawian archer Coach Park is everywhere but her health is not great Yesterday, I think we pushed ourselves a bit too much I have no energy. I need to recharge my battery! I’m a little tired today Even though she smiles, before she came to Malawi she had to have serious surgery to remove her large intestine My daughter was against this because my body was not in a good condition at the time I wanted to come She kept telling me not to go, and go when I got better but you never now what will happen with the human body I didn’t know whether I’d get better or worse I felt like I had to do what I had to do She wonders how long she can stay in Malawi due to her health Merry Year Foundation International at Gumulila Giving support for the area of Gumulila and the archery team of Malawi The Korean relief organisation in the area is the headquarters of the Malawi archery team Each lunchtime, local people eat local food, “sima” – made out of corn Coach Park eats sima as well But the team has special meals She made a request to the organisation that her archers eat meat at every lunchtime Before, they used to eat this at home but there were many that couldn’t even eat like that They ate one meal per day but since they need their strength, I started feeding them more After eating some meat, they started gaining some muscle, and weight, and got taller She doesn’t care about herself but she cares about her archers, and loves to watch them grow The archers ride bikes home Their houses are an hour’s walk from the centre so the relief organisation provided bikes so they could get home faster and less tired With such care these young men started to dream Gumulila, Malawi because of a shortage of food and water, illness in the area is common and it’s very poor 14% of the population suffer from AIDS in the area or die 11 out of every 100 kids die before reaching five in Malawi At first, the reality did not sink in One day, we went to Mark’s house His mother and sister ran away from poverty and his father cannot work due to a chronic illness The house, made of bricks, did not even have a proper roof Gosh, it rained so much… …that this house was filled up to here So everything got wet He couldn’t throw away the destroyed books because he didn’t want to lose his dream I want to give him a hug He, especially, has it the hardest At first, he didn’t have a cell phone but since we needed to contact him in case of emergency we gave him one But at night, he uses this cell phone light to study The battery ran out really quickly so I asked him why He told me that he sets the alarm at 12 o’ clock and used the light to study So I gave the archers one of these They can use it all night and then I charge it for them Every day, his brother waits for him walking around the neighbourhood his brother beats his hunger with a leftover snack Since this is soaking wet, there are a lot of bugs There’s mould and fungus where he’s sitting Their bums are getting cold from where they’re sitting If it continues, it won’t be good for their health What’s that? The young men live in places even without basic conditions If they have faith and study hard and practice hard, there should be good news Simply teaching them archery doesn’t seem to be enough… You’re right… Even in these hard circumstances, they always smile and study and work hard… Before I came, I didn’t know it was this bad But now I’ve seen it, it’s really awful The reality of these young men’s lives hits the coach hard After meeting coach Park, they found something they enjoy it was their first time seeing clean water and soap They have fun washing their clothes all morning Lilongwe, Malawi Coach park takes the young men to the market She saw their shoes a few days ago and came here to buy new ones for them to replace the raggedy shoes In Korea, these shoes are used but to these young men, they are as good as new This looks very strong, it‘s good The young men look like excited children trying on all the shoes they can But not just the archers were excited… In Korea… “Choose, choose” It’s on sale? Is this six hundred, or five hundred? I know this price! Korean woman, coach Park and a stall owner at the market bargain over the price of the shoes The young men watch on, looking anxious They have a deal! Coach becomes an angel, over some used shoes The next day… The archers’ day starts with some running Because of the new shoes their running is a lot lighter this morning Today is the day of the selection competition for the archer… …that will got to the Archery World Cup It will select Malawi’s first international archer Mark and Areneo practise on the 30 metre target John is nowhere to be found… What happened? Can you give me the arrow? One arrow? Coach Park’s most promising student, John… …has had something happen to his bow on the day of the match This is supposed to be in the middle, but it’s a little crooked So the bow’s crooked I don’t think we can do a 70 metre record today I don’t think he knows I didn’t tell him because it might hurt his feelings So he will use it for now He’ll need to use a different bow, and it’ll take time for him to get used to the equipment You have some pain? Yeah He knows this bow is weak He doesn’t know why he has to use this one But your arm is in pain, so I think it’s good for you She tells him she’s changed the bow because she’s worried about injuries but it’s impossible to do a 70 metre round with a new bow So Mark and Areneo have to compete without John This does not mean their qualification is guaranteed if both score badly, both cannot go The selection competition runs like a real tournament 36 arrows, twice 72 arrows overall, and the scores of each are added This is the first selection competition in Gumulila for an international tournament so everyone is here to cheer them on! John lost a chance to make the team so Areneo and Mark are giving it their all for everybody Finally, the round is finished… Today, Areneo shot 292 [for 36 arrows] That is a new Malawi record, congratulations! Areneo is selected, but what about Mark? Then, according to the score… Areneo and Mark will go to Antalya Congratulations! After the selection of both players, everyone is happy John lost his chance, by accident, but he is still smiling Why are you happy? Because we are family How about you? Same family It’s not what you’d see in other countries but it’s heartwarming when the archers who didn’t make it, congratulate the ones that did John Chipuniro, 17, Malawian archer I told Mark and Areneo, ‘Please do your best’ I want them to tell me what they saw and felt When we have a chance later we can be much better because of those memories That is how the first national archery team was made in Malawi Not as you or I, but as we… hope instead of despair they stand strong, looking at the future instead of the past If you change the sight a little, it will hit the centre Before the selection competition, we used crooked arrows There aren’t any international athletes that use these arrows Everyone uses much better ones, but these cost a lot Our scores improved after switching, about 20-30 points He shot well. With this score, he wouldn’t come last at an international event Finally, the day to head to Turkey comes Everyone comes to say goodbye to Mark and Areneo The passionate support of the people gives them confidence All the preparation is done That night, our reporters visited coach Park’s house our staff went to the funeral and I wanted to show you that film The video was sent from staff in Korea It is of her mother’s funeral She died a few days ago Her mother was in an intensive care unit for a year She heard of her critical condition but could not go back because of the upcoming tournament Yeongsuk, when you first told me you were going to Africa I was very proud of you, and I am still proud of you Mom would be proud of you, too Be healthy, and work hard She felt guilty, feeling like an undutiful daughter I wondered what my family would think… …but I am thankful my brother feels that way At last, the plane heading for Turkey This is their first time riding in a plane and the young men are excited and awake I’m feeling happy because we’re going to Turkey They should be tired, but they seem to be having fun because we’re on the plane I‘m a bit tired though. Let’s have a safe trip The trip from Malawi to Turkey takes 24 hours and three plane transfers but they finally arrive at their destination But there’s a problem This is the young men’s first time in a hotel After entering the room, coach Park takes them to the bathroom There are so many things to explain in this strange place! Everything is so amazing to these young men Look at your face! What surprised them most was… …this object in the living room Coach Park Yeongsuk solves that problem Everything is exciting, and they want to see more but they must sleep ahead of the tournament tomorrow It’s a beautiful morning in beautiful Antalya We meet coach national team coach Moon Hyeongcheol Coach Park and coach Moon have known each other for a long time, and did archery together If she hadn’t gone to Malawi Coach Park Yeongsuk could have been the coach of a world-class team She is acknowledged as a good coach in the archery world So there are colleagues that find her choice moving I have known her since high school She had a good heart back then, too Because she’s so smart… … if she’d taught at a school, she’d have been great But since she wanted to do this we personally think it is touching The Archery World Cup stage is underway 500 athletes from 55 countries from all around the world are participating Mark and Areneo are very happy to finally be attending as Malawi national archers At the event… the other countries have amazing equipment which helps in an international competition This is Mark and Areneo’s first time Their equipment may be for beginners but real professionals don’t blame things on their equipment They are copying other competitors But they are much faster, it’s so much fun Since it’s a world contest, there are complicated procedures To prevent cheating, each archer has their equipment checked Thankfully, they pass Where are you going now? We don’t have a lot of time but I want them to warm up at short distance They went to the practice target to check their technique and improve their accuracy Athletes from other countries are very skilled Mark and Areneo get to practise Mark has concentration, but Areneo is a little off Maybe he is nervous Their posture is not stable Long distance travel, you can see their condition… Then, something unexpected occurred… the archers were used to staw targets and are having a hard time getting their arrows out A few minutes before the match… The coach is busier than the archers There is some time to practice on the competition field They don’t know where to stand and are confused Areneo shot a new record in Malawi we hope for his concentration to come back But he still has a hard time Coach is getting nervous He is getting nervous, too, and checks his sight again He gives it all he’s got But it’s not going well Areneo’s sightmark is very wrong I think he’s set his sight wrong Coach says it’s okay and tries to calm Areneo Their first tournament in a whole different world I don’t blame him if he’s nervous! Mark, who’s watching, comforts Areneo The same bow, the same target… …only the place and the people are different Don’t be afraid and enjoy it! Areneo finally smiles After calming themselves, they wait for the start of the round First 36 arrows The first round begins This qualification round just selects athletes for elimination matches but for these two athletes, every arrow is special They put Malawi in the 55 national teams competing It’s a proud moment He shot right in the middle! After participating in a tournament with the world’s best archers the scores are totalled as the round is finished They check their scores and it’s not that bad Their doing well, it’s really great their performance is 100% better The second half begins… Two young men from a poverty-stricken country shoot arrows for their dream Coach Park, who watched over them throughout their training, seems relaxed and calm After 72 arrows, they check their final scores… These young men have learned archery is honesty and humbleness They seem as relaxed as if they were at the practice grounds in Gumulila Did they do well? Mark did very well, so he’s very happy What’s the score? He scored 292 [for 36 arrows], which is his best score Not long ago, I thought their performance would be bad but the more they shot, the more they gained confidence and enjoyed the round They finished shooting quicker than the others, so I was proud If I could, I would give them 110 out of 100! In the international world of archery, many remember a famous archer from Korea Malawi archers are big news at this tournament They’ve finished the match and gone to the pigeonholes The final scores for the Malawi team on the qualification round have been released Areneo is in last place, 147th and Mark came in 146th They were eliminated from the tournament it’s sad but they have no regrets Are you satisfied with your score? He wants to see the highest! To be able to enjoy a competition like, especially the first time, isn’t easy I’m thankful they’ve done what I’ve asked. I’m so happy After the match, they walk down the street There is a ride over there and it’s their first time seeing one So they’re quite amazed They want to see what the big round thing is for themselves The ride is hectic This is a thrill they are feeling for the first time in their lives and will make memories that stay with them The next day, the competition is over… …but the Malawian team is back The Korean national archery team is preparing for the finals of the tournament Park Cahesun, Korean recurve men’s coach Coach Lee Eunggyeong told me to give you these These must have been heavy! The Korean team has a lot of luggage This is a lovely gift, thank you so much Hello, how are you? Hello. Nice to meet you These are gifts for Mark and Areneo from Korea Even track suits with their names They’ll look cool in these! This is their first time wearing brand-new shoes You guys look great An opportunity all archers dream about now awaits these young men Go to the front This is an honour Mark and Areneo stand on the line with the world’s greatest archers It’s the scariest moment in their two-year career It’s interesting how the world’s best might see them… Kim Woojin, Korean national archer It hasn’t been long since they started and their gear isn’t exactly professional material But their shooting is impressive Choi Seungsil, Korean recurve men’s coach They’re pretty good, considering the short practice time The basics are learned through experience See this? This one, too The other way Come to think of it… …this is what coach Park told them over and over in Gumulila Ku Bonchan, Korean team member How many pounds is this? 32 pounds We didn’t practice 70 metres much But his technique is good The heavier the bow, the faster the arrow speed For 70 metres, the bow needs to be at least 40 pounds Shooting 70 metres with 32 pounds is impressive in itself Their scores would be higher if they had better gear They have great posture Getting compliments from the Korean team… Areneo, feels good, right? Yes The first and last placed archers, together and they’ll remember and cheer each other on for a long time Practice field, Gumulila, Malawi After the Archery World Cup, the archers return to Malawi The practice field is busy The relief organisation has started to build an athlete village for the team They’ve been through tough times with their old homes Living and training together, I believe that will make a lot of good memories The young men did not become archers to become famous They became archers to have hopes and dreams they want to teach that hope learnt from coach Park and teach it to their family and the people in poverty in Gumulila When these young people are able to teach others by themselves that’s when they are able to stand on their own two feet and that’s when I’ll be able to leave, feeling at ease

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  1. If you’ve got 50 minutes to spare, this is well worth a watch. Warning: it’s quite emotional at times!

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