For the first time, a business fair exclusively for Korean American nonprofits will be held at Koreatown Plaza (KTP), a large shopping mall known as one of the landmarks of Los Angeles Koreatown.
Nonprofit education organization called Next Generation Advocates (NGA) announced on April 19 that it will host the “2023 NexGen Expo” featuring nonprofit organizations, social foundations, and business owners.
The event will take place on May 13 (Saturday) from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Koreatown Plaza rooftop parking garage. According to organizers, the NextGen Expo will showcase more than 40 nonprofit organizations, including Korean American nonprofits, social foundations, youth clubs, and so on.
“There are various small nonprofit organizations in the Korean community that provide good services for the community, but not a lot of people know about them,” said Helen Kim, executive director of NGA. “Through this expo, we will introduce the roles and activities of each organization.”
The event is also an opportunity for participating organizations to build their C.V.
On the day of the event, participating organizations will showcase promotional videos, briefings, and personalized consultations at each booth. The best presentation team from youth clubs will receive a scholarship.
Lawyers from the Korean Women’s International Network (KOWINLA) will also provide free advance directives for participants.
Of the 40 prepared booths, 20 organizations have already registered, including the Korean American Federation of Los Angeles, the Korean American Coalition Los Angeles (KAC), Refugee Support Center (RESC), and the KOA Dance Federation.
“We’ve created a space for Korean American nonprofit organizations to come together and provide information and assistance to residents, particularly younger generations. We also welcome inquiries from individual nonprofit organizations (424-253-5558, www.nextgenad.org),” said Kim of NGA.
The manager of Koreatown Plaza, which provides the venue, said it will continue to support activities for the Korean American community.
“We focus on the purpose and impact of the event rather than how much we’re making from it. We want nonprofit organizations to use the empty space to promote Korean culture,” said Chris Yoon, manager of Koreatown Plaza. “We will provide events that showcase the culture and arts of the Korean community and bring together Asian artists without interfering with the business of existing tenants.”
Following the fair, maum.market, a second-generation Korean-American organization, will also establish a permanent pop-up market at Koreatown Plaza, a regular festival for Asian-owned small businesses and artists.
During the Qatar World Cup last November, Koreatown Plaza held a big gathering where Korean soccer fans could come watch and celebrate the game together.
“We always wanted to hold various events in Koreatown, but there wasn’t a suitable location for it,” said Young Kim, CEO of IRIS USA, who acquired Koreatown Plaza in September last year.
“We want to host events for the community and provide opportunities for both the Korean community and local residents to enjoy. By utilizing these events, we can become a model for other communities, and if we become a community that people want to be a part of, we will see huge economic development in Korean-owned businesses and so on.”
BY HYOUNGJAE KIM [firstname.lastname@example.org]