CPLA efforts, competition takes UO innovators to China

After the successful completion of their first summer program in August, the Chinese Philanthropic Leadership Association (CPLA) is seeking partners, sponsors and participants for their 2013 International Leadership Syndicate (ILS) contest.

The challenge of the contest is for UO students to propose an innovative environmental education program that can support teachers and youth leaders, as well inspire both groups inside and outside the school setting.

“We want to promote environmental awareness among youth,” says Even Yu, vice-president of external affairs for CPLA. “We noticed that there are some great resources, including ideas in the U.S. We want to bring these ideas to China to benefit the public. The most important thing is we want to change the world.”

This past summer, CPLA took four UO students to Hunan, China as part of their first ILS contest. The winning group developed a simple thermometer they called a WAPI (water pasteurization indicator), which helps children understand when water has reached pasteurization temperature (65 degrees Celsius) and it is safe to drink.

“The students discovered that seven out of 21 samples from their wells and taps at home tested positive for E. coli,” explains Alayna Linde, WAPI team member and an environmental studies graduate student. “Armed with this knowledge, the students became educators to their parents and community members about the importance of water pasteurization.”

As the first UO student group that focuses on philanthropic leadership, CPLA helps students who are interested in developing work in China to become future serving leaders through real projects. Contact CPLA to learn more or join the organization.

The 2013 ILS contest is made possible thanks to the support of the Environmental Action Associations of Hunan Province and the sponsorship of Global Oregon and Mercedes Benz of Eugene.

Submissions deadline for the 2013 ILS proposal contest is January 25, 2013. The winning team will earn $1,000 to develop their project, as well as the opportunity to travel to China and implement the project in Hunan Province.

Visit the CPLA website to join the association or participate in the ILS contest.