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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Work group clarifies vision for Korean community center

A working group made up of representatives from the Korean community, many of them with ties to Annandale, is making progress in formalizing their objectives for developing a Korean community center.

William Hwang was selected as the coordinator of the Korean Community Center Work Group. Hwang is president and CEO of Young Won Trading Inc., a beer, wine, and spirits importer and wholesaler, and former president of the Korean American Association of Virginia, based at the Willston Multicultural Center in Seven Corners. 

At its most recent meeting March 20 at the Fairfax County Government Center, the work group adopted this vision statement: “The Korean Community Center provides services and cultural opportunities that allow Koreans and non-Koreans to develop as healthy, self-sufficient, and engaged community members.”

It also adopted a mission statement: “To establish a home for an array of health, social, educational, advocacy, and cultural services and activities to meet the identified needs of the local Korean community.”

The group agreed that the programs, services, and activities provided by the Korean Community Center will be culturally relevant and appropriate, celebrate and sustain the community’s shared culture and traditions, meet the needs of individuals of all ages, recognize the unique circumstances and challenges faced by immigrants and their children, and be designed to develop individuals who are healthy, self-sufficient, and engaged in the community and with each other.

Four committees were established, to focus on governance, membership, finance/fundraising, and finding a home.

Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chair Sharon Bulova formed the group as a means of providing a forum for discussion, and her office is facilitating the work group meetings. The group will meet monthly at the Fairfax County Government Center. Once the work group is actively working within its charter, Bulova will “take a step back and only attend as needed.”

At the March 20 meeting, the county’s role was clarified: Fairfax County is prohibited from giving away land, but it can sell or lease space, act as a liaison with a realtor to look for land for the community center, and facilitate meetings between the group and county staff to work on navigating the process of zoning, permits, and comprehensive plans. Although Fairfax County is unlikely to match funds raised by the group, it does partner with organizations that have grant programs.

1 comment:

  1. I do not understand why Sharon Bulova's office is so intricately involved in forming this group to build a community center. There are many other citizen groups (40 I think) that meet at the Willston Center that are equally in need of county help and facilitation in either upgrading the space at Willston Center or finding a new community center. Is it that this group is more vocal and powerful?