Sometimes devastation can bring hope – a light that can help others, a new outlook that can change the future and a new beginning for those who otherwise may not have had a voice. The Drop Box is one of those miracles that have changed the lives of hundreds of abandoned babies in South Korea.
South Korea had a major issue with babies being abandoned in allies and other places within the country because the parents were unable to take care of them or left them due to their deformities. In 2009, Pastor Lee acted and took measures to save these babies from death by building a drop box that opened from an alley into the pastor’s home.
Brian Ivie, author and director of the film The Drop Box, remembers his initial discovery of the baby mailbox vividly. He was having breakfast and became stunned as he read an article in the Los Angeles Times about the abandoned babies and the humanitarian efforts of Pastor Lee. “I remember the scene in Hotel Rwanda with the characters played by Don Cheadle and Joaquin Phoenix. I remembered thinking the same as they did in the movie – if I don’t do anything then I, along with everyone else, will forget about this,” recalled Ivie.
Soon Ivie was on a plane to venture around the world to meet Pastor Lee and document the heroic measures he was taking to save these innocent babies from doomsday. “The story shows a much higher love and the pastor is proof of that love. A love that sets people free and rescues people. It shows us for sure that this is a community of people that are willing to embrace the suffering,” said Ivie.
Kindred Image is an organization that assists the drop box and provides care and medical attention to the abandoned babies. “We are all pro-life. Some of these kids won’t be adopted and that’s something we really want to change. Babies were drowning, and now with Kindred Image we’re able to create a culture of life and stop abandonment,” said Ivie.
While leaving an infant alone and unguarded may seem sad unfortunately, the harsh reality is common across the world. There are drop boxes everywhere – Africa, Canada, and even in the United States where fire stations are set up to receive unanimous baby drop-offs by parents who simply can’t or won’t.
Ivie is not allowing this reality to go untold. He’s written a book and directed a film that are both titled after the infamous Drop Box. “I always wanted to make movies since I was a little kid. The movie was made first and then I read this book that also documented the drop box. I decided from there to also write and provide the idea that forgiveness is always the road home,” said Ivie. “…real life isn’t found watching movies. It’s found fighting for others.”