In 1999, Taiwanese Heritage Society of Houston (THSH) established the Community Service and Culture Committee (CSC). The major purposes of CSC are to enhance and expand THSH's service scope, and also to promote Taiwanese cultural heritage to general public in the greater Houston area. Since then, CSC has participated in many social assistance and community service events, and has provided cultural activities around the year. Some specific programs of CSC in the past years are described below:
Though the Community Service and Culture Committee has only been established a few years ago, THSH's work in serving Taiwanese community and reaching out to other ethnic communities has actually begun in 1990. We are proud of many accomplishments we have achieved thus far. We hope to work even harder to expand our services to the greater Houston community, and to share Taiwanese and other Asian cultures with our fellow Americans. For further information about CSC, contact its committee chairperson at 713-271-5885.
In the past 10 years, CSC has joined the food drive programs sponsored by TV stations in Houston area. Our contributions to these programs have exceeded $1,500 each year, including cash and food items.
CSC has worked together with the entire Taiwanese community to donate food, money and clothes to Red Cross and other emergency relief agencies, helping victims of natural disasters, both domestically and internationally. Some of these kinds of relief work included Houston flood in 2001, and earthquakes in foreign countries, such as India and El Salvador in 2001 and Taiwan in 1999. Total contributions in flood and earthquake relieves amount to more than $250,000.
In 1993, Mrs. C. C. Chen Memorial Fund had donated $10,000 to initiate this care program. The program provides free transportation to hospitals for cancer outpatients, in-hospital assistance, and various supports for patients and their family members. Recently, health seminars have been offered several times a year. These seminars and their follow-up articles are routinely published in Houston's TAA Journal, and also appeared on the THSH's website, www.houston-taiwanese.org. As a result, this care program has greatly elevated health awareness in the Taiwanese community.
CSC has allocated funds to help both local and national Taiwanese organizations and their events, such as the Taiwanese Student Association in Rice University, the Taiwanese Collegiate, and the Southwest Summer Conference.
Taiwanese Heritage Society of Houston (THSH) has aimed to provide services to the diverse communities in the Greater Houston area. Through its Community Outreach Committee (COC), THSH has participated in partnerships and networks with various mainstream organizations/institutions, including the Houston Independent School District (HISD), the Alief Independent School District, YMCA, the Alliance for Multicultural Community Services (The Alliance), and the Houston Red Cross. In the past few years, THSH has provided educational information to greatly enhance the public understanding of Taiwanese culture, and brought social services to under-privileged communities. The recent activities include followings:
Since the year 2001, THSH has partnered with HISD and The Alliance to host the annual "Back to School Orientation" event. School supplies and uniforms are given to new refugee students; and information on school system and social matters are presented to their families
COC has constantly invited students from neighborhood schools and after-school programs to visit the Taiwanese Community Center. During a two-hour visit, students and teachers have learned about Asian cultures, particularly that of the Taiwanese, through hands-on activities such as paper folding, puppetry, and lion dance. This cultural field trip program has also been extended to senior groups and the general public.
Since the year 2002, our high school volunteers have been tutoring on a weekly base for the neighboring elementary school students. Periodically, THSH volunteers are also invited to present Taiwanese culture at nearby elementary schools.
COC has sponsored networking gatherings for local college students, who are from Taiwan for advance education in Houston. The gatherings are conducted two or three times a year at the Taiwanese Community Center.
THSH has established the Community Scholarship program in the year 2002. Ten college-bound seniors have been chosen from five local public high schools, each to receive $500 award and a plaque. On June 5, 2003, THSH has hosted the first award ceremony for the scholarship recipients, their families and the school officials.