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University of St. Thomas “Gathering to Give” Taiwan Promotion

Date: 11/28/2017

University of St. Thomas “Gathering to Give” Taiwan Promotion

Max Castroparedez is a university freshman and president of the Chinese Language and Culture Association (CLCA), a student club at the University of St. Thomas (UST). He showed up at the Education Division of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) in Houston early in the 2017 Fall Semester for college students, with smiles on his face. He was seeking support and advertising for a CLCA event he was currently planning, to introduce the Chinese language and Taiwanese cultures to students, faculty and staff of UST, and local communities.
TECO in Houston couldn’t be happier to support this exceptionally positive young man with great passions for the Chinese language, a language he barely speaks, and the Taiwanese cultures he has so far experienced solely through his Taiwanese friends.
The event was originally scheduled for September but that was before Hurricane Harvey hit Houston at the end of August. Max’s family became one of thousands of households affected by the storm in the wake of Harvey. His family’s house was so severely flooded that they lost literally everything to the flood. Rebuilding and getting back to a normal life takes time and money, and Max had to work three jobs to overcome the financial challenges caused by the flooding. Despite all this, Max didn’t back away from working to make the event happen during his first semester at UST, and for the following four months, he still presented himself at every meeting with TECO with his usual huge smiles.
After Max’s tireless hard work, a redesigned event named Gathering To Give finally took place on November 9 at the Campus Life Mall of UST. In response to the occurrence of a major natural disaster, the initial objective was taken to a new level: to help people in need to go through difficult times. All of the proceedings were to go to Harvey relief funds to support victims of the storm.
People showed up on that sunny day to show their support for the Chinese Language and Culture Association, Chinese Language learning, Taiwan’s cultures, and the Gathering To Give initiative. Foods can’t be tastier, language can’t be friendlier, cultures can’t be closer, the message can’t be more powerful than when people gather to give and care for each other. Approximately 300 people took part in the event and it raised about US$3,500 in cash donations.
Photo:Participants lining up for Boba milk tea.