Interview with Qiuyan Chen


Qiuyan Chen is a young Chinese activist based in London. Her work started in 2013, with a campaign suing the Chinese government for publishing textbooks promoting conversion therapy and describing homosexuality as an illness, and since then she has found Queer China UK,  the network dedicated to promoting links between the Chinese and British LGBT communities. She has also been running a mutual support network during the pandemic for overseas Chinese students trapped in the UK, as well as numerous other projects.


Despite facing threats from her university and the Chinese government, Qiuyan has continued her activism and hopes to encourage and develop a new generation of international activists. I caught up with her over Zoom in February to talk about it.

Film Screening - 'Golden Girls'

Special Screening of Golden Gate Girls:

the untold stories of the first Chinese female film director in America

Released on April 20 in the “Hong Kong, Reimagined” programme as part of the ongoing Chinese Cinema Season, Golden Gate Girls (2013) tells a story about the first Chinese film and fashion icon in Hollywood.



dir. Louisa Wei | 2013 | 90 mins | Documentary | Cantonese, English | Hong Kong SAR

Available between April 20 – May 12

IWD 2021




Online Panel Discussion

Thursday 4 March 2021 at 16.30 to 18.00

Booking link:

( No charge to attend and all are welcome )


IoD City is pleased once again to be leading again on this year’s Celebration of International Women’s Day with our panel discussion on Thursday 45 March 2020 This event is opened to all ( men and women ) who would like to attend. We are delighted that the following groups have been to join us:

  • Women in the Livery, a section of City Livery Club
  • Women Icebreakers of The 48 Group Club
  • The British Malaysian Society
  • PAWA ( Pan Asian Women’s Association ( Charity No 1148405)
  • Mulan Foundation Network ( Charity No 1147252)
  • tve ( Television for the Environment Charity No 326585)


2020 Webinar Panel: "Women as Inclusive Leaders"

It was our absolute pleasure to host our first ever webinar panel on the topic of "Women as Inclusive Leaders: perspectives from media, business, politics and medicine". The panel was chaired by Dame Fiona Woolf, DBE DStJ DL, Lord Mayor of London 2013-2014, who has long championed diversity during her distinguished career. Our panellists Ching-He Huang, Suwei Jiang, Sarah Owen MP, and Sharon Heng MBBS discussed the opportunities and challenges of building the 'new normal', the importance of sustainability + cultivating new talent, and ways to support women to express their natural leadership capabilities. We also enjoyed a dance performance by Sy Naet Nin of the Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance, and a presentation from jewellery designer Pauline Wong. The funds raised will go to support the work of the Mulan Foundation in 2021.

2020 Webinar Panel

Date : Thursday 10 December 2020

Time: 17.00 to 19.00 GMT

Mei Sim Lai OBE DL, Chair and the Trustees of Mulan charity are delighted to invite you to join us for our online Panel Discussion event on:

" Women as Inclusive Leaders” Some perspectives from the world of media, business, politics and medicine.

We are delighted that Dame Fiona Woolf DBE DStJ DL, Lord Mayor of London 2013-2014 and a woman of a long list of significant achievements has agreed to chair this panel discussion for us. Following her speech to set the scene on her work on leadership, diversity & inclusion in all its forms, she will invite each panel member to share their journey to success with and discuss their views on the theme.

Three of our panel members apart from Sarah Owen MP are Past Mulan Award Winners

There will be a Q&A and time for the audience to contribute to the discussion.

Due to the pandemic this event is in place of the Annual Mulan Awards and fundraising Dinner. There is a donation of £20 per person to attend. Booking is via Eventbrite or you can email Mei Sim on [email protected] to secure your place and pay by bank transfer to Mulan's bank account.


2020 International Women's Day event

Each for Equal: an equal world is an enabled world.

In the spirit of true collaboration between international women and men, 7 organisations joined forces to celebrate International Women’s Day on Thursday 5 March 2020, including the Mulan Foundation Network.

Update on 2020 mentoring scheme

STOP PRESS: Due to covid19 restrictions for the foreseeable future we are limiting the number of new mentees for whom we are arranging mentors. If you are interested being mentored or indeed being a mentor please email: [email protected] 

Mulan Foundation Network’s aims are to support and celebrate Chinese women’s achievements. A need for some direct activity to meet these aims was identified, and at the end of 2018, the ‘Mulan Foundation Network Mentoring Scheme’ was launched successfully.

It is aimed predominantly (although not exclusively) at young women of Chinese heritage in the UK (most mentees will likely be aged under 40, but exceptions are allowed).

The scheme is already well underway, with experienced senior executive women as Volunteer Mentors helping pre-qualified mentees. In 2019, several enthusiastic mentees started their journey.

A few mentee places are still available for 2020. Matching with a suitable Mentor is carefully undertaken. Enthusiastic, interested Chinese women are invited to contact us, for preliminary assessment.


Mulan 2019 Awards Ceremony & Dinner

Date: Saturday 7 December 2019 | Time: 18:00 for 18.30-22:30 | Venue: Oriental Club, Stratford House, 11 Stratford Place, London W1C 1ES

The Event – What is it?

- The 2019 Mulan Awards ceremony and Reception to recognise and honour the achievements and success of Chinese women in the UK and elsewhere,

- This Annual event for the Charity is hosted by the Chairman, Mei Sim Lai OBE DL and the Trustees of Mulan Foundation Network,

- It is an excellent networking opportunity for all attendees


Over one hundred and twenty guests gathered at The Oriental Club, Stratford House, to celebrate Mulan Foundation Network 2017 Annual Awards and Reception. Chairman of Mulan Foundation Network Mei Sim Lai OBE DL is on the Committee of the Club and it was great that we are able to hold this event at such a prestigious venue.

The Board of Trustees congratulate all the winners of 2017, and greatly look forward to more Chinese women coming forward to be recognised for their achievements in the future. We strongly believe that there is so much that Chinese women can offer to other Chinese women and the societies and business communities in which they live.

Award for Business & International Banking 

Winner - Datuk Yvonne Chia 


Yvonne is an award winning senior international banker for over 30 years. She was named as one of Forbes Asia’s “50 Businesswomen in the Mix” in 2013. She is also Chair of Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia and Standard Chartered Saadiq Berhad. 

Yvonne was the first female to become CEO of any Malaysian Bank in January 1996. She is currently the CEO of Shell Re ning Company in Malaysia. 

Her record of excellence and value creation has transformed the banks that she has led. Her strong leadership and industry expertise have seen her achieve exceptional and sustainable growth market position within a highly competitive environment. 

She is an in uential woman business leader and a rm believer that everyone can lead meaningful lives in whatever they choose and are passionate about. 

Award for Community Arts & Culture 

Winner - DJ Alice Yu 


(from left to right: Chairman of Mulan Foundation Network Mei Sim Lai OBE DL, The Hong Kong and Economic Trade Office London officer Jieli Du, DJ Alice Yu)

DJ Alice is a radio presenter who hosts a daily show called Chinese Spectrum between 5pm and 8pm time. e radio show broadcasts music, current affairs and discussion about British-Chinese community issues in Mandarin and Cantonese. 

In 1991, Alice’s work on Spectrum Radio was featured in the reading comprehension paper in the London East Anglian Group GCSE Chinese Examination. With a teaching background in English herself, DJ Alice has helped many immigrant children from Hong Kong, China and India ease into the English education system. 

In 2006, Alice started the Chinese Youth Radio project with the objective to train the younger generation from the British Chinese community in radio and presenting skills and to guide them towards a career in the media. She is delighted to see her students acquire jobs in the media industry in Hong Kong, China and the Far East. 

Alice has won the Asian Media Group’s GG2 Inspire Award 2017 which recognises outstanding work in the community that has served to inspire young people. 

Award for Business and Enterprise 

Winner - Angel Xue 


(from left to right: Angel Xue, Chairman of TB Arts & Craft Yan Hong)

Angel is the Co-Founder and Creative Director at Angeleye. 

Despite humble beginnings Angel is now a successful fashion entrepreneur. Her garments showcase a unique analysis of upcoming fashion trends which are produced within budgetary means and marketed at appropriate pricing points for her customers. 

Designed in London, manufactured in China and then sold to top retailers globally is one way Angel seeks to connect and support East and West and beyond. 

Angel has a very special way of nurturing her team’s talents and fostering a friendly atmosphere and it is her down-to-earth leadership skills and positive spirit that have paved her success. 

Her exceptional clientele include: Superdry, Debehams, Next, ASOS, and many other highly established retail and fashion brands. 

Highly Commended - YingMei Quan 


(left: Chairman of Mulan Foundation Network Mei Sim Lai OBE DL, middle: YingMei Quan)

YingMei is a Business Partner and Director at Welsh & Jeffries, military tailor to the Prince of Wales, based at 20 Savile Row. She is the only ever Chinese female winner of the Savile Row Golden Shears Awards, which YingMei received in 2011, equivalent to the Oscars of the tailoring world. 

As a result of YingMei’s contributions and infuences, the house at Welsh & Jeffries has entered a new age and is becoming known for its strong female client and Chinese client base. YingMei has successfully broke into the male dominated tailoring trade on London’s Savile Row when she became what is believed to be the first Chinese female master cutter to work in the home of luxury and bespoke tailoring. She has been instrumental in developing the Chinese market. 

Truly an inspiring tailor’s tale. 

Award for Arts & Culture 

Winner - Dr Xu Zhou 


(from left to right: Dr Xu Zhou, Thomas Heatherwick CBE)

Dr Zhou is a teacher and Founder of Uprising Chinese Academy. Located at Canary Wharf, the academy offers quality art courses including Chinese traditional art categories such as Sinology enlightenment, calligraphy, seal carving, Chinese painting, Chinese zither performance, Chinese traditional string plucked musical instrument, flute, tea ceremony and others. 

Dr Zhou has greatly contributed to the dissemination of Chinese traditional arts and culture in the UK. Her teaching methods promote cultural transmission and communication, such as, in learning calligraphy skills her students also walk away with an introduction of Chinese aesthetic and cultural history. 

Dr Zhou has offered opportunities for the Chinese community to inherit their own tradition, yet at the same time, she has cultivated interest in the Chinese culture amongst those British students she teaches, thereby enhancing a shared cultural presence in China and the UK. 

Award for Social Enterprise & Young Achiever 

Winner - Bonnie Chiu 


(left: Chairman of Mulan Foundation Network Mei Sim Lai OBE DL, middle: Bonnie Chiu)

Bonnie is the Co-Founder and CEO of Lensational and Managing Director of e Social Investment Consultancy. Lensational is a global social enterprise which equips marginalised girls and women with cameras, photography training and a platform to sell their images such as to Getty Images, Wellcome Images and Colgate. e Social Investment Consultancy is a London based social change strategy consultancy with offices in Dubai, Hong Kong and Milan aimed at helping charities and corporate rms maximise their social impact. 

Bonnie’s focus in life is to steer social change by inspiring business leaders of tomorrow to direct their attention to social responsibility and to see beyond just the pro ts. She is dedicated to creating a world where regardless of ethnicity, gender, class or other differences, everyone stands to have a fair chance in life. Bonnie is particularly keen to challenge gender stereotypes and ultimately remove cultural boundaries that inhibit women’s empowerment. 

Bonnie has been awarded several prizes, including Forbes “30 Under 30 Europe: Social Entrepreneurs” in 2017, Young Achiever at the Asian Women of Achievement Awards in 2016 and the Hong Kong Youth Service Award, also in 2016. 

Award for Education & Science 

Winner - Dr Rongrong Chen 


(left: Dr Rongrong Chen)

Dr Chen has worked for King’s College London for 20 years. During this period she has taught different courses for undergraduate and postgraduate students and has completed many research projects. 

Through Dr Chen’s keen endeavours to link universities between China and the UK, Sino- British Joint Pharmaceutical Laboratory was established. is is a good collaboration between King’s College London and Guizhou Medical University in China. Dr Chen has supervised a number of students at her Laboratory from Guizhou Medical University. 

Many of Dr Chen’s charitable fundraising efforts are aimed at and result in helping schools in China. 

Award for Healthcare & Tackling Health Inequalities 

Winner - Dr Etheldreda Kong 


(left: Chairman of Mulan Foundation Network Mei Sim Lai OBE DL, middle: Dr Etheldreda Kong)

Dr Kong is a long-serving GP with special interest in sexual and reproductive health, diabetes, children’s health and minor surgery. She is the Chair of NHS Brent Clinical Commissioning Group since 2011, and is the first Chinese woman to take on such role. 

Dr Kong has an in-depth understanding of the health and social care needs of Brent residents and focuses her efforts in achieving a reduction in health inequalities in the borough. 

She is the clinical lead on Brent’s primary care transformation, workforce and Organisation Development (OD) transformation, Integrated Urgent Care, Whole Systems Integrated Care and Better Care Fund. 

She has dedicated her life in helping others through her involvement with different projects and steering groups which have made signi cant and positive impact for local residents. 

Dr Kong has also been extremely supportive of the deaf community. In her words: “Being deaf shouldn’t be a barrier to playing a full and active role in our community. Around one in six people across the UK are affected by hearing loss in some way so to exclude them is a huge waste of talent and potential”. Dr Kong advocates integration, inclusiveness and equality. 


*Read the press coverage in English HERE and HERE.

*Read the press coverage in Chinese HERE and HERE.