Founded in 1990 as a general Vietnamese summer culture camp, Trại Hè Về Với Non Sông brought together youth from across Southern California to enjoy a weekend of fun and excitement. Twenty years later, a new generation of leaders stepped up in UVSA. In 2001, these leaders transitioned away from an open camp to UVSA Camp which specifically targeted collegiate VSA leaders. In 2003, UVSA legends Mike Vu and Vu Dinh wanted to take what they had been learning at prior UVSA Camps and expand on camp programming to give back to our younger brothers and sisters in high school. They founded Project LEAD (Leadership Education And Development) which would be the umbrella project to UVSA Camp and then newly introduced VAHSA Camp.
Project LEAD continues to impact hundreds of high school and college students every year by providing participants with the knowledge and tools to become effective leaders in their schools and in their communities. Focusing on the importance of community cohesion and unity, the camps also provide an opportunity for students to network with each other and establish skills that reinforce mutual collaboration and instills an appreciation for the Vietnamese American identity, cultural heritage and a sense of belonging. Additionally, Project LEAD has inspired leaders from across the country to innovate upon or even create their own leadership camps in other parts of the country. This year marks the 12th annual UVSA Camp and 10th annual VAHSA Camp and we are proud to continue to bring together students from throughout Southern California to build an alliance of young leaders with a common vision of strengthening the Vietnamese community.
About UVSA | Sơ lược về THSV We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit, non-partisan, community-based and youth-oriented organization designed to provide a united voice for Vietnamese American youth and bringing together students from different colleges and high schools in Southern California. UVSA of Southern California currently represents 14 collegiate Vietnamese Student Associations/Union and the Vietnamese American High School Alliance, which consists of high school VSAs. UVSA was founded in 1982 as a means for youth to organize socially and politically within the community. Committed to cultural awareness, educating peers, and community service, UVSA is composed of volunteers including alumni, young professionals, educators, and college and high school students. Annual activities and programs that UVSA organize include the Tet Festival of Southern California; VAHSA and UVSA leadership camps; Black April Commemoration in remembrance of the Fall of Saigon; UVSA Gala, Winter Formal, College Fair, Beach Day and Bonfire, and Friendship Games. In addition, UVSA hosts a number of charitable and advocacy events such as charity car washes, fundraising dinner for camps, International Human Rights Night, candle light vigils for religious freedom in Vietnam, and more.
Mission | Sứ Mạng Our mission is to bring together Vietnamese American youth including students from different colleges and high schools throughout Southern California to build unity, to serve our community, and to advocate for social justice issues that affect our community domestically and in Vietnam. We represent the diverse and dynamic Vietnamese youth population by encouraging interaction, participation, and activism in the community. We promote awareness of the Vietnamese culture, language, and history. Through leadership and service, we strive to advance the Vietnamese community in areas of social, educational, cultural, and civic participation.