Intercultural Exchange with Delegation from China’s Disabled Persons’ Federation

Last week PREVENT HATE met with a delegation from China’s Disabled Persons’ Federation. We were invited by the Los Angeles City Department on Disability to participate in an intimate roundtable discussion about empowering people with disabilities. Three quick asides FYI: 1) The City of Los Angeles is the international model for government services to people living with disabilities. 2) We were impressed by the Chinese delegation for coming to the meeting right from the airport. They didn’t even stop at their hotel first. Now that’s commitment. They certainly have our deepest respect for their dedication to be of service to some of their least advantaged population. 3) The office space for the Los Angeles City Department on Disability is fabulous. And compared to their last space … let’s just say they went from eek to chic. 

The meeting went quickly actually. Matthew Rosenthal, President, and Stephanie Stone, Associate, represented PREVENT HATE (Steph is also Vice Chair of the Los Angeles County Commission on Veterans Affairs) together with Barry Leneman, our Witness Humanity director and executive director of Ethic Housing. We, along with the City of L.A. and the Chinese delegates, shared best practices and ideas about how to provide services to people with disabilities, as well as how to foster self-sufficiency and independence. (And, yes, we happened to mention our training program that focuses on this issue.) The Los Angeles City Department on Disability and PREVENT HATE stressed the importance of utilizing public-private partnerships to achieve goals. We were aware that this may not be so easily replicated in the People’s Republic of China, but we wanted them to understand our way of doing things nevertheless to help them know us better since an important component of this meeting was to foster intercultural relations around an important humanitarian issue — the PREVENT HATE method at work!

At the end of the day, per usual, we made some new friends and colleagues. Whenever we do these things we have such a good time that it feels like we are combining business with pleasure.

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