China Enterprise Council (the Los Angeles Chapter of the China General Chamber of Commerce – U.S.A.,) partnered with Los Angeles County Alliance for Boys & Girls Clubs to launch a session on “Discovering China.” The session offered over 100 youth from different boys and girls clubs the opportunity to learn about China’s history and culture from top Chinese executives. More than 60 executives and employees from over 20 Chinese companies participated in the program.
Hosted at the Boys & Girls Club of Whittier, the session kicked off CEC’s 4th annual Community Day program, which featured youth aged 12 to 18 from various clubs in the Greater Los Angeles area.
The session started with a video titled “Beautiful China” that revealed the natural landscape and diverse beauty of China, which immediately got the audience’s attention.
A panel of senior executives from such companies as Air China, BYD Motors, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, International Vitamin Corporation, China Telecom Americas and Wanda Group shared insights from their life and work experiences in both the U.S. and China, followed by a question and answer session with the youth. The panel was rewarded with a long round of applause.
“It’s great to learn their life experience and very inspiring to know that they never give up when they encounter difficulties and obstacles, so they can accomplish dreams in the end,” said Benjamin Vazquez, a teenager from the Watts/Willowbrook Boys & Girls Club.
Stella Li, president of BYD Motors said, “I am so glad to be able to participate in such meaningful efforts. The story of BYD is about realizing dreams. We look forward to helping youth understand the new technologies that are transforming our world.”
In the quiz part of the session, teenagers were enthusiastic about the questions asked: What language is spoken in China? (Mandarin) What is the world’s largest manmade structure? (The Great Wall). Huawei Technology USA and Peak Sports provided products to the students with the correct answers, including a TalkBand 2 and items autographed by NBA stars (a shirt signed by San Antonio Spurs star Tony Parker and a basketball signed by Laker Lou Williams).
Adele Chi, a teenager who grew up in Los Angeles, shared her journey discovering and living in China to make a difference helping China’s underserved youth.
Sichuan opera artist from Ba Guo Bu Yi Chinese restaurant also performed “Face Changing” (bian lian), which created one of the most exciting moments for the audience. “This is unbelievable,” exclaimed teenagers from Boys & Girls Club of Long Beach.
“Children are the future and hope of the world. We hope the youth can learn more about China and about the world,” said Sherman Zhang, CEC president, noting that this is the 4th year Chinese companies have participated in CEC’s annual Community Day program. “It’s wonderful to see more and more companies are participating to deepen communication and understanding with the community, which will benefit the relationship between China and the U.S.”
Mary Hewitt, the executive director of the Los Angeles County Alliance for Boys & Girls Clubs, expressed gratitude to CEC, saying, “Today’s program is important because it is helping 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. This provides our youth information and access to things they can’t necessarily learn in a book. Having someone from China talking about how the Chinese live and go to school is priceless to many of our kids who are underserved and minority, and most likely will never have an opportunity to visit such a fabulous country.”