Heidi Shin

The World

Heidi Shin is a public radio + podcast producer based in Boston, who is especially interested in the stories of immigrant communities and the inevitable connections between stories from abroad and our lives here in the US.

Heidi Shin is a public radio + podcast producer based in Boston, who is especially interested in the stories of immigrant communities and the inevitable connections between stories from abroad and our lives here in the US.

Among many adventures, she’s been diving with elderly mermaids on Jeju Island, trailed a group of Catholic nuns that reunites families separated at the US Mexico border, and interviewed a North Korean film director with his leading lady.  

Her work has appeared in National Geographic, The Washington Post, California Sunday Magazine, Snap Judgment, 70 Million, the BBC, and PRX The World.  She also co-created and produced WGBH/The Ground Truth Project's "The New American Songbook," a podcast about immigrant musicians whose awards include an ONA, a Webby, and an Edward R. Murrow Award.  

Heidi also teaches at the PRX Podcast Garage and Harvard University’s Sound Lab and organizes Boston’s Sonic Soiree.

A man in a yellow shirt helps fix the bike of an elder leaning over bike wearing casual clothes and cap

Oakland’s Chinatown finds solutions to hate crimes

Seeing a surge in attacks against Asian Americans during the pandemic, community ambassadors are finding ways to help elders in Chinatown feel safe.

Oakland’s Chinatown finds solutions to hate crimes
Maddox and his brother in their apartment in Lowell, MA.

This 9-year-old brings hope to his grandmother, a genocide survivor, by dancing

This 9-year-old brings hope to his grandmother, a genocide survivor, by dancing
Students from the Daum School on a field trip with their teacher. Their faces are blurred to protect their privacy. Many North Korean refugees have trouble adjusting to life in fast-paced South Korea, especially at school.

North Korean students learn to deal with trauma at this Seoul school

North Korean students learn to deal with trauma at this Seoul school
A pregnant woman in the obstetrics and gynecology ward at Severance Hospital in Seoul

In South Korea, parents are increasingly saying, 'we hope for a girl'

In South Korea, parents are increasingly saying, 'we hope for a girl'
Border

A day in the life of immigration limbo

A day in the life of immigration limbo
Jefferson Krua fled Liberia as a refugee at age 5, and eventually settled in Boston, MA. Recently, he's moved back to Liberia to help with re-building the country's infrastructure.

A young Liberian refugee, educated in America, chooses to move back 'home'

Mercy Krua is a Liberian refugee who lives in Boston. Her son, Jefferson Krua, was also a Liberian refugee. But he decided to move back to Liberia and make his life there. In part, he says, because no matter how much money he could make in the US, he would always be a black man in America.

A young Liberian refugee, educated in America, chooses to move back 'home'
Class instructor Chioma Woko preparing braised cabbage.

Forget the latest diet fad — here's a class that teaches how to eat better with traditional African dishes

Leonard Tshitenge grew up in the Democratic Republic of Congo eating food from the region. But, now living in the US, the dishes he remembers aren't served anywhere. So he and his wife, who is from Nigeria, decided to teach Americans how to eat like they did back home.

Forget the latest diet fad — here's a class that teaches how to eat better with traditional African dishes
Cambodian women meditating in the Metta Center's meditation lounge, sitting cross-legged with palms pressed together

Why a US health clinic suggests Cambodian treatments for everyday maladies

At a clinic in Massachusetts that specializes in treating Cambodians, much thought has gone into creating a facility that doesn't evoke memories of torture or other negative experiences.

Why a US health clinic suggests Cambodian treatments for everyday maladies
The Durano Father School teaches stoic Korean dads how to be more involved and loving parents.  The program includes a literal lesson on how to hug.

This school teaches Korean dads 'how to hug'

The Duranno Father School is designed to transform stoic Korean dads into more loving and involved parents. The program includes a literal lesson on "how to hug."

This school teaches Korean dads 'how to hug'
24-year old North Korean refugee Danbi was a smuggler in North Korea's black markets.  Here she gives us a tour of a market in South Korea, which reminds her of the markets in the North.

Why young North Koreans are daring to wear skinny jeans

Meet a young North Korean woman, who dared to defy her government, by wearing skinny jeans.

Why young North Koreans are daring to wear skinny jeans
Actor Song Il Kook with his triplets, Daehan, Minguk, and Manse. They're featured on the Korean reality show, "Superman is Back."

Could a Korean reality show make men better fathers — and husbands?

It's so unusual for Korean men to stay at home and take care of their kids that there's now a hugely popular reality show featuring celebrities as stay-at-home dads.

Could a Korean reality show make men better fathers — and husbands?
Stay-at-home dad Wonhoe Bae with his two boys in their apartment in South Korea.  He does all the childcare, meal planning, and manages the home.

What’s this Korean man doing in the kitchen?

In a society where men rarely get home before 10 or 11 at night, Wonhoe Bae is a rarity — he's a stay-at-home dad.

What’s this Korean man doing in the kitchen?
Mermaid1

Why can't men be mermaids in South Korea? Reporter Heidi Shin explains

The last generation of South Korea's mermaids, or haeynyos, are in their 60s, 70s and 80s, and they're still diving. We talked with reporter Heidi Shin about spending time with these women at sea.

Why can't men be mermaids in South Korea? Reporter Heidi Shin explains
A haeynyo woman climbs aboard the boat. They wear orange diving suits so commercial ships can spot them more easily and steer clear.

Diving with the last generation of Korea’s Mermaids

Some people call haeynyos Korea's matriarchs, but I think they're more like Korea's first working mothers. They dive without oxygen tanks, plunging up to 60 feet in the water, holding their breath for up to two minutes at a time.

Diving with the last generation of Korea’s Mermaids