30 years, countless stories...
HGSCA opens its journals and photo albums to share with you its pictures and memories from significant events over the last three decades...
We're inviting Houstonians, people born or living in Guayaquil-Ecuador, members and former members, as well as people who even though they do not belong to the groups mentioned aboved they love to make a difference, to reflect on our shared history and help us layer new projects to help our communities. We hope that combining our expertise and your ideas, we will shine a new light on the moments that changed our lives as well as our cities.
In June 1987, The Houston City Council signed a resolution establishing the Houston -Guayaquil Sister City relationship.
In July 1987, The Houston Mayor, The Houston Chamber of Commerce and Business leaders traveled to Guayaquil to sign the Sister City Agreement during the City of Guayaquil Founding Anniversary. The delegation met with the President of Ecuador and government officials. A Letter of Good Will was signed by the Chambers of Commerce of the two Cities.
In 1989, five members of HGSCA traveled to the Ecuadorian cities of Guayaquil, Quito and Riobamba. The HGSCA volunteers joined efforts with the City of Houston Fire Marshall and members of staff, on a fire-fighting training / social leadership technical assistance mission. Contributions from the City of Guayaquil and a major Houston multinational firm made this fourteen-day training and exchange initiative a resound success, evidenced by the Reader's Digest Technical Exchange Program Award received in 1990.
Also, during the same year, HGSCA and the Guayaquil Chamber of Commerce conducted lobbying activities to obtain the authorization for a Continental Airlines flight between Houston and Guayaquil, from the Civil Aviation Commission of Ecuador.
This was the first route to South America for Continental Airlines. The Francisco de Orellana Foundation of Guayaquil was instrumental in securing this air route that opened a new gate to commenrce and tourism between our cities and Latin America.
In #1993, HGSCA coordinated the visit to Guayaquil of Miss Houston and Miss Texas to participate in a fashion show organized by the Francisco de Orellana Foundation to obtain funds for a children's hospital of Guayaquil, The visit of Miss Houston to Guayaquil was repeated in subsequent years.
In 1994, HGSCA, Continental Airlines and the Francisco de Orellano Foundation of Guayaquil, worked together to raise funds for a charitable organization and to promote tourism to Ecuador. Round-trip airline tickets and hotel accommodations in Guayaquil and the Galapagos Islands were raffted to raise funds,
In 1995, HGSCA:
* Worked on a joint venture with CARE, and an enrinmental organization, to help protect the Rain Forest in Ecuador
* Worked with Methodist Hospital and others to hold a medical conference in Guayaquil.
* In the same year, a delegation from Guayaquil visited Houston to study the organization and administrative configuration of the society for the Protection and Care of animals.
*A photograpic exhibit "Ecuador through the eyes of Texas" by Houston photographers was shown in Quito, Cuenca, and Guayaquil.
*Participated in the Houston International Festival with representation by third-graders of Edgewood Elementary at the Children's Parade since 1995. The Ambassadors Ballet Folklorico and its members have participated on behalf of the organization in it as well. Members of the Association have volunteered as wine-servers in the Sister Cities of Houston Wine and Hospitality Tent, during the last few years.
In 1999, HGSCA collaborated with Pan American Cultural Exchange in hosting four Ecuadorian artists, that exhibited their work at the Houston Center for Photography.
In 2000, HGSCA coordinated the visit to Houston of the Ecuadorian Secretary of Tourism and the President of Escuela Politecnica del Litoral (ESPOL.) The secretary met with the President of Continental Airlines, the City of Houston Aviation Department and the University of Houston. A memorandum of Interest was signed between ESPOL and the University of Houston Hotel Management and Restaurant College to develop an ex-change program between the two institutions.
In 2001, The Chairman, Vice Chairman and Managers of Trade Development of the Port of Houston Authority visisted Guayaquil to establish a SIster City relationship with their counterparts. A memorandum of Friendship and Trade Cooperation was signed by both Port Authorities, Honorary witnesses were the Governor of the Province of Guayas and the Mayor of the City of Guayaquil.
In 2002, HGSCA assisted and participated in organizing the Houston Trade Mission visit to Guayaquil. This mission was sponsored by the City of Houston International Initiative. The Chamber of Commerce of Guayaquil and the USA-Guayaquil Chamber of Commerce hosted the visit in Guayaquil.
In 2002 and 2003, HGSCA co-hosted latin music concerts and poetry recitals along with St. Thomas University. Well Known musical interpreters and art world personalities were feature at these events.
In 2003, HGSCA hosted the Ecuadorian Trade Mission visit to Houston in December, composed by prominent private industry leaders and government officials, to improve business ties between Houston and Guayaquil.
In 2004, HGSCA:
* (April) Unveiled the bust of the first designated President of Ecuador (1835 - 1839), Dr. Vicente Rocafuerte. Corporate and private donor contributions, along with the commendable cooperation from several City of Houston government officials and the Port of Houston Authority, allowed this civic event to
come to fruition.
* Was well represented at the Young Artist Competitions sponsored by the City of Houston Municipality. These young artists excelled three years running - 2004 - 2005 - 2006. Jefferson Davis High School students havve successfully represented HGSCA in this competition.
* (October) Held a Fundraising Dinner Dance on October 16, 2004, in order to subscribe new volunteer members of the Association and begin funding our 2005 Medical Assistance Program.
In 2005, HGSCA:
* Organized and presented a Latin American Music and Poetry Recital at the University of St. Thomas here in Houston. Several talented singers, from opera leval to popular genders, delighted a much impressed audience at this event.
* Acted as a facilitator for the generous donation of fire-fighting equipment, from the Houston Fire Department to the Guayaquil Fire Department, in July of 2005. Donation valued in excess of $500,000
In 2006 HGSCA:
* Entered into a counterparty relationship with the Ecuadorian American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM) of Guayaquil, Ecuador in order to facilitate the execution of several programs that will need cooperation from the Guayaquil Municipality.
* Commemorated the 9th of October anniversary of our fair city, Guayaquil, Ecuador, by organizing a fund raiser dinner/dance. This event was attended by the Consul General of Ecuador in Houston, Mrs. Veronica Pena Vinueza.
* Various HGSCA members participated as volunteers at the polling table for the Presidential Elections of Ecuador, organizaed by the Ecuadorian General Consulate of Houston in October of 2006 and for the run-off in December of 2006.
In 2007, HGSCA:
* Took delivery and coordinated shipping of three containers full of fire fighting and rescue equipment donated by the Houston Fire Department not only for Guayaquil, but for other nearby communities in Ecuador as well. This donation was valued at $650,000.
* With the gracious sponsorship of Continental Airlines, Dr.Luis Bolivar Moyano, an awarded and well celebrated orator from Guayaquil, gave a lecture on Vicente Rocafuerte, the first democratically elected-President of Ecuador, and his modern day inheritance for all Ecuadorians.
* Some members also assisted with the polling for the Constituent Assembly Representatives election in September of 2007.
In 2008, HGSCA assisted with the opening of a savings account and initial deposit, to facilitate a fundraiser effort in conjuction with the Association of Ecuadorians in Houston, to help about 100 families affected by the floods in Ecuador.
In 2009, HGSCA:
* On behalf of the Guayaquil FIre Department requested training assistance from the Houston Fire Department. In October, four volunteers of the Houston Fire Department donated their vacation time to go give practical seminars on high-rise building rescue, motor vehicle victims rescue and hazardous materials handling, in Guayaquil, Ecuador.
* With the assistance from two City of Houston Council Members, HGSCA requested a donation of surplus fire-fighting and rescue equipment for the Guayaquil Fire Department. The donation was granted in March and containers were shipped in May 2009. This equipment was shared with neighborhood communities of Guayaquil, thus positively affecting the lives of thousands of people and property. The estimated value of this donation was approximately $750,000.
* in November of 2009 and 2010 Participated in the yearly SIster Cities of Houston soccer tournament, represented by a group of Ecuadorian players . The 2009 participation yielded the tournament First Place Award.
In 2010, HGSCA requested a donation of surplus fire-fighting and rescue equipment for the Guayaquil Fire Department in the fourth quarter of 2010. The donation was granted in February and containers were shipped in April of 2011, This donation was valued at over $400,000.
In 2011, HGSCA successfully assisted the Christus Health Foundation "Operation San Jose" initiative, which took a team of physicians, nurses and medical assistants from Houston to Guayaquil to perform free cleft-lip and palate surgeries. HGSCA facilitated transportation and security resources for all the medical professionals that traveled to Guayaquil, communications between the coordinators, assistance with the Customs process to temporarily import medical equipment, and obtained recognition from the City of Houston to highlight the initiative by Christus personnel. Consquently, 42 harelip and cleft-palate afflicted children were successfully operated on and thereby their lives changed. As a result of the dedicated attention and great professionalism exhibited by the Hospital Universitario (University Hospital) of Guayaquil, Christus has offered to return to Ecuador and implement new programs.
Be part of our history in the making, join us and make a difference in the world ...