1305. Hua Liu
Hua Liu, from Beeston, is bringing together Chinese elders across Leeds facing loneliness and social isolation through her volunteer project ‘Lychee Red’, run in partnership with charities 'Health For All' and 'Time To Shine.'
Hua was inspired to set up the project after volunteering with charity ‘Health For All’ and realising that many older people from within the Chinese community in the city were feeling socially isolated and marginalised, particularly as a result of cultural and language barriers. Uniting people through food and shared culture, Hua hosts weekly meals and social activities for over 100 people, supported by a team of bilingual volunteers. Hua also runs a ‘Happy Pandas’ voluntary group specifically to support older Chinese men, and has set up a group for Chinese families.
In a personal letter to Hua, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
“I know you do this with no thought of praise or reward, but allow me to offer my own recognition of how you are bringing together the Chinese elderly community in Leeds, using food and culture to tackle the social isolation felt by many.”
Hilary Benn, Hua’s local MP for Leeds Central, said:
“I’m delighted to hear about this Points of Light award for Hua Liu in recognition of the great work that Lychee Red is doing to support the elderly Chinese community across Leeds. It is a really valuable community project.”
“As a new immigrant and mother of three children, I never imagined that I would become who I am today and to receive such a great honour in the UK. My local charity, ‘Health For All’, allowed me to serve the community and bring happiness to older people. They inspired me and changed my life.”