Category Archives: Uncategorized

Take Action! Tell Mayor Garcia to Implement the Youth Fund!

Even before the pandemic, leaders of the Long Beach Invest in Youth campaign worked hard to gather budget priorities from residents in all 9 districts. 

Their leadership efforts resulted in the Long Beach Youth & Emerging Adults Strategic Plan and the first Long Beach Youth Fund, which were both approved by the Mayor and City Council Members earlier this year.

Now that their votes are in, we need to hold our local electeds accountable to implement the Long Beach Youth Fund, guided by the priorities of youth leaders and community members who shaped the Strategic Plan!

Join us in sending a letter to Mayor Robert Garcia letting him know that implementing the Youth Fund and Youth Strategic Plan is critical to COVID-19 recovery for our communities!

KGA Denounces Anti-Asian Violence

Statement on Anti-Asian Violence in Atlanta, GA & Across America
March 19, 2021

We are deeply saddened and outraged about the violence that ensued in Georgia this week which resulted in the tragic deaths of 8 people, 6 of whom are Asian women.  The increased assaults on our Asian American communities have escalated during the pandemic because of white supremacist rhetoric “Kung Flu” and “Chinese Virus” which are deeply imbedded in America’s history of stigmatizing and othering BIPOC communities.  Such acts are deemed acceptable when it is repeatedly denied as racially motivated, silenced by the media and not condemned by leaders and institutions.

We urge you to take action by speaking out against these acts of violence, to center the voices of those who are most impacted, and support policies that institutionalize funding and equity for Black, indigenous and people of color communities. Now is the time for individuals and institutions to condemn race-based assaults on elders, women, femme folx, working class and poor people.

It is clear that Asian violence, race and gender- based hate is on the rise.  On the same day the assault took place at Asian-owned businesses in Georgia, 33 Vietnamese community members were separated from their families and deported.  These events are not happening in isolation, but are a part of a pattern of white supremacy to uphold dehumanizing systems of oppression. While these attacks are happening, our communities continue to struggle with school, housing, employment, family separations and are grieving the loss of loved ones.

We must take action and speak out so we can disrupt the violent and traumatizing cycles that uphold white supremacy, patriarchy, capitalism and class.

For over two decades our organization has developed the leadership of Southeast Asian women and youth of color and we are no stranger to violence and trauma.  Our very first campaign in the late 90’s addressed the overwhelming instances of sexual harassment that teenaged Southeast Asian women faced from their peers and schools. It has been our mission to center the leadership of young women, so that they can be empowered leaders in the work to dismantle racism, patriarchy, ageism, and classism. Furthermore, our families have had to survive through many forms of violence from the genocide in our homeland, to the war waged on poor people who live in systemically under-resourced but over-policed neighborhoods.

Our communities deserve to live with dignity. We deserve to live in an environment free from any form of violence to our bodies, minds and spirits- most especially during a global health crisis, when each of our health is connected to and impacts our collective recovery.

Centering community care in this moment means uplifting those most impacted, speaking out against these injustices and to be part of the solution that roots out systemic oppression and breaks cycles of violence, intergenerational trauma and poverty. 

TAKE ACTION TODAY!

Our collective actions are bigger than fear, hate and division.  We deserve to determine our lives, communities, and future!  Here are some immediate ways to take action and be part of the solution:

Donate to organizations working on the ground in Atlanta, Georgia & sign-on to support their community demands:

Asian American Advancing Justice- Atlanta: 
– http://bit.ly/aaajcommunitystatement
– http://bit.ly/DonateToGeorgiaAAPICommunity 

National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum- Atlanta:
– https://www.napawf.org/take-action
– NAPAWF www.napawf.org/donate 

Donate to support victims, their families as well as AAPI organizations 
https://www.gofundme.com/c/act/stop-aapi-hate

Report AAPI hate (available in 11 AAPI languages)
https://stopaapihate.org/reportincident/


RESOUCES & SUPPORT

Safety Tips in 11 AAPI Languages
https://stopaapihate.org/resources/

Resource for families Facing Deportation to Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam www.searaids.org

Confidential 24/7 helpline for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault accessible in multiple API languages
https://nurturingchange.org |  1-800- GET-HELP or 1-800-339-3940

LA County guide to information, resources and services including hate/ bullying prevention, mental health support, Covid19 Resources & more
www.211la.org |  Dial 2-1-1

Long Beach mental health resources
http://www.longbeach.gov/health/healthy-living/individual/mental-health/

562-570-INFO or 562-570-4636

Bystander intervention trainings to stop Anti-Asian/ American & xenophobic Harassment: 
https://www.ihollaback.org/bystanderintervention/

What is disaggregated data?
https://live-searac.pantheonsite.io/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/2019.02-DataDisagg_UpdatedFactsheet_general_final.pdf

Hub for AAPI Data
https://aapidata.com/

 

ADVOCATE WITH STUDENTS

Defend Ethnic Studies Petition by Arab Resource & Organizing Center
https://act.newmode.net/action/mpower-change/take-action-save-ethnic-studies/?source=aroc

Asian American and Pacific Islander Coalition Helping Achieve Racial and Gender Equity. (2019). Can you see me? School culture and climate for California’s AAPI youth. [Fact sheet] from Southeast Asia Resource Action  Center Retrieved from http://bit.ly/SEARACYouthReport2019

Every School Every Community: Funding the Future of Learning by the Partnership for the Future of Learning California
https://futureforlearning.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/CA-Funding-the-Future-of-Learning-Oct-2020.pdf

Learn more about the Long Beach Invest in Youth Campaign
https://www.investinyouthlb.org/

Volunteer with Khmer Girls in Action
https://kgalb.ourpowerbase.net/volunteer

 

 

Share this Statement

Next COVID-19 Surge Calls for Leadership and Action

Khmer Translation

Dear Beloved Community,

We wish you a safe and healthy holiday season. Whether you are a current or older member of KGA, a volunteer or supporter, in this moment we are calling for your leadership and support.

As you know, we are still in a global health crisis and it will soon be nine months since we’ve had to shelter in place.  California is now in its third spike of COVID-19 with a Regional Stay Home Order issued on December 3, 2020, which takes effect “if intensive care unit (ICU) capacity drops below 15% in a region”.  

Currently Southern California, LA County, and Long Beach are considered widespread, high- risk areas, with less than 12% Intensive Care Unit (ICU) capacity at the county level.  With the rise in cases each day, it is projected that by mid-December there will be a shortage in ICU units.   This means that those who test positive for COVID-19 who need ventilators as well as people in our community who have suffered heart attacks, strokes or other medical complications will have an even harder time accessing intensive care treatment when they need it most.

Spanning November 24th through December 8th, there was a 55% increase of COVID-19 cases with a 70% increase in hospitalizations bringing our state totals up to over 10,000 hospitalizations.  Admission to intensive care units has increased by 68% in this same time frame.  Long Beach has now recorded 19,000 people testing positive for COVID-19 and during this holiday season, as people still gather, the numbers are likely to increase each day.

Intergenerational trauma, high poverty rates and systemic barriers to employment, affordable housing and access to culturally-informed health care are some of the factors that place our community at a higher risk of contracting COVID-19.   Our loved ones may need more consistent support in understanding COVID-19 prevention; it might also be difficult to self- quarantine, shelter in place, work from home or know how to take care of our family members who have been affected.

We are reaching out to you to lead and share information and resources to your loved ones.  Every year, youth leaders tell us that KGA is family and a second home.  Your loved ones to us, are also family, the people we represent for and deeply care about.

We cannot stress enough how critical it is to follow health advisories from our city, county and state officials, especially amidst so much misinformation and pressure to re-open public spaces too soon.  Additionally, there may be long-term health complications for those who recover from COVID-19, placing more burden on our families who are already struggling in these challenging times.

Please talk with your friends and family about how to slow the spread of COVID-19, save lives, and support the health and self-determination of our community.

If you or your loved ones would like to share your story, or consider sharing your experience to advocate for equity in our city, please email us at justice@kgalb.org.

Remember, you are not alone.  We will get through this in community.  We look forward to the day we can celebrate again together.

Like a Lotus, We Rise!

Lian Cheun
Executive Director

***

Data and information in this letter, including latest COVID-19 updates can be found at:

To get tested for COVID-19 or request information visit or call:

To learn more about community care, mental health resources and mutual aid visit:

KGA Welcomes New Staff Member!

KGA is excited to welcome Mayta to our team!

Mayta Lor is a second-generation Hmong American, born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, with her bachelor’s degree in History and Southeast Asian Studies and a Certificate in Asian American Studies. Mayta has over ten years of experience working with Asian and Pacific Islander youth and over five years of professional nonprofit experience in grant writing, strategic fundraising, and building key partnerships. She has worked with nonprofit organizations such as LEAP (Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics), the Little Tokyo Community Council, MAASU (Midwest Asian Pacific Islander Desi American Student Association), and the Center for Hmong Arts and Talent. Mayta is passionate about community empowerment, creating intentional leadership pipelines, and advocating for resources and equal opportunities for marginalized communities and communities of color. She hopes to continue creating a more equitable world in affirming and empowering the experiences, ideas, and leadership of Southeast Asian women and youth of color.

Save the Date: Long Beach Gives is on Thurs. Sept 24th!

Long Beach Gives is a 24-hour, online giving day that provides 150 + Long Beach nonprofits the opportunity to share their stories and build relationships with new donors and the community.

On Thursday, September 24, 2020, Help KGA fundraise and reach our $10K goal!
Join us & #LongBeachGives in celebrating and supporting the critical work of Long Beach nonprofits.

You can donate directly on our LB Gives Page or be a volunteer fundraiser.
Early giving starts on Thursday, Sept 17th!

For additional questions or info, please email justice@kgalb.org with LB Gives Fundraiser in the subject line.

KGA Recognized as a 2020 Non-Profit of the Year

2020 CA Non Profit of the Year

Long Beach, August 20, 2020 – Khmer Girls in Action is proud to announce it has been selected as a 2020 California Nonprofit of the Year by Senator Lena Gonzalez, representing California’s 33rd Senate District!

Khmer Girls in Action (KGA) is one of over a hundred other nonprofits that will be honored by their state senators and assembly members for their tremendous contributions to the communities they serve.

Khmer Girls in Action invests in the leadership of young people to create social change needed in their community. Youth knowledge, power and experiences drive the organizations campaigns and create programs that uplift Southeast Asian women and youth to be community leaders who dismantle systemic oppression and advance gender, racial and economic justice.

Associate Director and founding member, Sophya Chum exclaims, “On behalf of our members, alumni, board & staff, Khmer Girls in Action would like to thank Senator Lena Gonzalez for this recognition! It is an honor to continue to work alongside leaders who advocate for the health and well-being of women, youth and our communities.”

Link to full Press Release

The Smithsonian Highlights Khmer Girls in Action!

Khmer Girls in Action Featured in National Museum of American History Series by the Smithsonian Institution


Without a doubt, youth have shaped the course of history and fought fiercely for our democracy. Southeast Asian youth in Long Beach have empowered those with deep-rooted fear and trauma with the government to participate in civic engagement and turn out in elections.

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History archives generations of courage and resistance in Young People Shake Up Elections (History Proves It) a video series where KGA is featured in Episode 4: Getting Informed!

Check Out the Whole Series Here: https://americanhistory.si.edu/democracy-exhibition/education/young-people-and-elections

GET YOUR VOTE ON | Read our latest Newsletter

GET YOUR VOTE ON!

We have a lot of things happening, read on to find out how you can help!

11 Days to Vote!

The California Voter’s Choice Act brings 11 days of voting starting this weekend, Saturday, February 22nd through election day on Tuesday, March 3rd!  

This new model makes voting accessible for everyday people to vote on weekends and have access to translated materials in 13 languages!  

Our vote is our power!  Visit www.lavote.net for more information.

PHONE BANKERS

Thursday, February 27th- Tuesday, March 3rd, 2020 is a big year to connect, educate and mobilize our communities to vote! Our Integrated Voter Engagement Program is seeking volunteers to phone bank this week and for our summer and fall field campaigns.

Bi-lingual speakers in Khmer and Spanish and those with experience in canvassing are strongly encouraged to sign up and volunteer!

TUTORS

Every Monday & Wednesday 3:30- 5:30 PM

Our LIFE Program is seeking tutors from March through May. If you have experience working with high school students and/ or excel in the subject areas of Math, English and Science, consider volunteering today! Sign Up to Volunteer.

Read on in our Latest Newsletter: Click Here


 

 

The Welcoming and Safe Schools for All Model Resolution

Meme-Citlali-6

The Welcoming and Safe Schools for All model resolution focuses on expanding “safe haven” schools to include all students impacted by the current climate of fear, hate, and discrimination. It provides commitments for local education agencies to take action in three broad areas to proactively uplift Welcoming and Safe Schools for All Students––Safety and Protection, Supports and Services, and Affirming and Celebrating Diversity.

The model resolution emerged from a successful delegation meeting of youth leaders from organizations affiliated with Youth Organize! California network with State Superintendent Tom Torlakson’s office, organized by the Advancement Project and Movement Strategy Center in May 2017. Since May 2017, an ad hoc committee of youth organizations including Genders and Sexualities Alliance Network, Californians for Justice, RYSE Center, Khmer Girls in Action, Del Norte and Tribal Lands Building Healthy Communities, Resilience Orange County, Dolores Huerta Foundation, and InnerCity Struggle have worked with the Advancement Project and Movement Strategy Center to draft a model resolution on Welcoming and Safe Schools for All.

The resolution highlights the experiences and needs of indigenous, African American, Latinx, Southeast Asian, and Pacific Islander students, undocumented, immigrant, and refugee students, transgender and LGBTQ students, Muslim and Sikh students, homeless students, English Learner students, foster youth, low-income students, students with special needs, and students impacted by the juvenile and criminal justice systems.

For more info visit https://yocalifornia.org/content/welcoming-safe-schools