Chi­nese firms reach out to LA-area youth

China Daily (USA) - - ACROSS AMERICA - By LIA ZHU in San Fran­cisco li­azhu@chi­nadai­lyusa.com

More than 20 Chi­nese en­ter­prises in South­ern Cal­i­for­nia teamed up with lo­cal youth clubs on Sun­day to help un­der­served chil­dren learn about China and the Chi­nese peo­ple’s daily lives, as part of a Com­mu­nity Day drive.

This year, the China En­ter­prise Coun­cil (CEC) part­nered with the Los An­ge­les County Al­liance for Boys and Girls Clubs to launch a ses­sion on Dis­cov­er­ing China on Aug 27 in Whit­ter, Cal­i­for­nia.

More than 100 chil­dren ex­changed ideas with over 60 ex­ec­u­tives and em­ploy­ees from 20 Chi­nese com­pa­nies, in­clud­ing Air China, BYD Mo­tors, China Tele­com Amer­i­cas and the Wanda Group.

The an­nual Com­mu­nity Day was ini­ti­ated by CEC in 2013 to pro­vide its mem­bers op­por­tu­ni­ties to reach out and di­rectly give back to the com­mu­nity.

“Chil­dren are the fu­ture and hope of the world. We hope the youth can learn more about China and about the world,” said Zhang Xum­ing, pres­i­dent of AVIC In­ter­na­tional USA and also CEC’s pres­i­dent. “It’s won­der­ful to see more and more com­pa­nies par­tic­i­pat­ing, deep­en­ing the com­mu­ni­ca­tion and un­der­stand­ing with the com­mu­nity, which will ben­e­fit USChina re­la­tions.”

Dur­ing the event, Chi­nese ex­ec­u­tives shared their life and work experiences both in the US and China.

The chil­dren also took a quiz on China and were awarded prizes pro­vided by Huawei Tech­nol­ogy USA and Peak Sports — the lat­est elec­tronic prod­uct TalkBand 2, shirts au­to­graphed by San An­to­nio Spurs star Tony Parker and Lak­ers player Lou Wil­liams bas­ket­balls.

“It’s great to learn about their ex­pe­ri­ence and in­spir­ing to know that they never gave up when they en­coun­tered dif­fi­cul­ties and ob­sta­cles to ac­com­plish their dreams in the end,” said Ben­jamin Vazquez, a teenager from Watts/Wil­low­brook Boys & Girls Club.

Most of the chil­dren were un­der­served and of mi­nor­ity groups who most likely will never have the op­por­tu­nity to visit China, ac­cord­ing to Mary He­witt, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of Los An­ge­les County Al­liance for Boys & Girls Clubs, which serves more than 140,000 youths aged 6-18 through­out the county.

“This pro­vides our youth in­for­ma­tion and ac­cess to things they can’t nec­es­sar­ily learn in a book. Hav­ing some­one from China talk about how the Chi­nese live and go to school is price­less to many of our kids,” she said.

“To­day’s pro­gram is im­por­tant be­cause it helps our chil­dren see possibilities be­yond what they ex­pe­ri­ence ev­ery day. Through ed­u­ca­tion and the shar­ing of experiences by these senior Chi­nese ex­ec­u­tives, we en­vi­sion each child hav­ing ac­cess to the greater world and the op­por­tu­ni­ties that lie be­yond,” said He­witt.

On be­half of the Chi­nese ex­ec­u­tives, Stella Li, pres­i­dent of BYD Mo­tors, said, “It’s great to be able to par­tic­i­pate in such mean­ing­ful ef­forts. The story of BYD is about real­iz­ing dreams, and we look for­ward to help­ing youth un­der­stand the new tech­nol­ogy that will trans­form our world.”

PRO­VIDED TO CHINA DAILY

Vol­un­teers or­ga­nized by China En­ter­prise Coun­cil and un­der­served chil­dren in Los An­ge­les County ex­change ideas on Aug 27 at a Com­mu­nity Day event.

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