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Candlelight prayer Updated: 2014-04-23 21:33:16 KST

Candlelight prayer
It's been a strenuous week of mourning not just for the family and friends of those who died aboard the sunken ferry but for the nation now reflecting on what this tragedy means.
Koreans are holding candlelight vigils, making donations on and offline and trying to cope with this tragic incident, together.
Our Kim Ji-yeon , is at one of the candlelight vigils.

We are into the eighth day since the accident, and behind me is around 5-hundred people comprised of Ansan residents and civic groups at the 25 plaza.
Like many other people across the nation, they are clinging to the hope that even one passenger on board the Sewol-ho ferry will come back alive.
You can see [dozens] of people gathered together, "wishing for the safe return of people on board."
In Ansan - the city touched the most by this tragedy - a memorial service is taking place to pay tribute to the young victims from Danwon High School.

I'm at Ansan Olympic Memorial Hall where an altar has been set up for the public so that they can pay their respects to the fallen.
As you can see behind me, portraits of 48 Danwon High School students and teachers are displayed.
More than 6-thousand people have come today to say their last good-byes.

In front of the memorial hall, people placed post-it memos letters to the deceased.
I talked to one of them. 59-year-old Oh Chun-sik who was born and raised in Ansan and has lived there his whole life.

"I hope the students are in a better place and I pray that their hopes and dreams that they had here are fulfilled there instead. I have an aching inside that cannot be put into words."

This is a temporary altar and local authorities are setting up a funeral in a larger location as more bodies are expected to arrive in the coming days.
A group funeral will be arranged in Hwarang recreation park, where the public can say their last good-byes, starting Tuesday.

How have volunteers stepped up to help with the memorial arrangements?

Citizens from Ansan and volunteers from all over the country came to lend a helping hand bringing with them basic necessities and medical supplies.

"To help support our community in this time of need, we have made all of our medicine and resources available to Danwon High School, and will continue to do so until the altar is removed."

This could not have been possible without the help of the community.
It shows that the nation does comes together in times of crises.

Our hearts go out to all the victims and their families. How about the student survivors. Are they going home soon?

Yes, after a week in the hospital, a majority of student survivors currently receiving
treatment are expected to be discharged soon but some of the guardians of the students wanted their children to stay in the hospital due to concerns of mental trauma.
In the high school, around 50 counselors are on stand-by for the students and they will receive regular counseling sessions and if needed, medication as well.
This has been Kim Ji-yeon reporting live from Ansan Olympic Memorial Hall.
KOGL : Korea Open Government License
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