Has Netflix’s Indian Matchmaking inspired you to look into matchmaking services? Here’s a Korean version. About 20 to 30 matchmaking companies specializing in pairing North Korean women with South Korean men are currently operating, up from two such agencies in the mid-2000s.

“I think what I’m doing creates small inter-Korean unification.”

Haerin Kim, who fled North Korea in 2012, runs one of those companies. There are no match-making services exclusively for male refugees, who often marry other North Koreans or live alone.

“My parents are in North Korea so I’ve always had a longing for them,” says Kim, “I wanted to do something in connecting families because of that.”

A 2019 government-funded survey suggested that 43 percent of married female North Korean refugees were living with South Korean husbands.

Her company has matched hundreds of inter-Korean couples including Hwang Yoo-jung who says her marriage allowed her to “acclimatize to this society more deeply.”

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