Sister Droste Kim brings Good Shepherd presence to winter Olympics

Good Shepherd Sister Droste Kim describes her ministry within the context of the Me Too Movement that is thundering throughout the world. #MeToo spread virally in October 2017 when the hashtag was used on social media to help demonstrate the widespread prevalence of sexual assault and harassment, especially in the workplace. The movement has since brought down celebrities, politicians and the entire board of U.S.A Gymnastics.

The 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, arrived in February amid #MeToo. For the first time in Olympic history, an organized and advertised contingent of offices and clinics were in place to help sexual assault victims. Professional volunteer counselors staffed the centers in collaboration with medical teams and law enforcement.

Sister Droste Kim runs Gender Equality Support Center at Olympics

Sister Droste was among the counselors. Her Gender Equality Support Center was tucked between a bathroom and a police post under the ski lift at the Phoenix Snow Park. She formed part of a team of 14,000 local volunteers whose goal was to offer support to anyone who experienced abuse or misconduct at the Winter Olympics.

Prince Feisal of Jordan, a board member on the International Olympic Committee, announced during the Olympics that the Olympics body should pursue the fight against sexual assault and harassment as seriously as it does doping.

Susan Greinig is the safeguarding officer for the International Olympic Committee. She said she hopes the efforts at Pyeongchang send a signal to victims that they will be believed and protected, and to abusers that the sporting world is developing zero tolerance.

Outside the Olympics, Sister Droste confronts gender inequities every day. She works at the Good Shepherd 24 hour counseling and referral service for women who are in situations of domestic violence, sexual harassment, prostitution and similar hardships. She is encouraged by knowing the Me Too Movement has landed in South Korea.

“Having equal rights makes it possible for us to accomplish freedom,” said Sister Droste.

Jeanette McDermott

Jeanette McDermott

Jeanette is the Communications Coordinator for Sisters of the Good Shepherd Province of Mid-North America. She is a career photojournalist who has served in various capacities of print, broadcast, and corporate communications. Jeanette is devoted to creation and is particularly focused on saving pollinators and other wildlife species and their habitat. She is an ethical vegan and created the website veganstoryteller.com