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HEAL Community Fest

The following post was written by intern Maggie Su to update APIFM supporters on current initiatives.

At Search to Involve Pilipino Americans (SIPA) Saturday morning, APIFM hosted a Healthy Eating and Active Living (HEAL) Community Festival, sponsored by Champions for Change and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Co-sponsors included SIPA, Pilipino Workers’ Center (PWC), Para Los Niños, the office of Mitch O’Farrell, Mother and Vision Zero.

Attendees started off by participating in a Zumba class led by Pamela Price, laughing as they danced to upbeat pop music. Afterward, they headed indoors to sample refreshing fruit smoothies. Ivy Daulo demonstrated how attendees could prepare the smoothies at home while Esther Lee answered questions about nutrition and healthy eating. They learned about the Rethink Your Drink campaign, which focuses on how we can choose healthier drinks such as water and beverages without added sugar. Finally, Ivy did a demo for mango black bean salad, which attendees also got to sample.

To conclude the morning, raffle tickets were drawn; a lucky few received reusable bags containing Champions for Change t-shirts, aprons, cutting boards, among other goodies. Those who were still up for it did a little extra Zumba on their way out.

All in all, it was a fun and productive morning. Thank you to everyone who attended.

If you missed out, Ivy leads weekly HEAL workshops at PWC on Thursdays at 6 p.m. All are welcome!

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Healthy Korean Food!

The following post was written by intern Maggie Su to update APIFM supporters on current initiatives.

On Tuesday evening, I got to watch a group of Korean women test a handful of traditional recipes. They prepared dishes such as chapchae (stir-fried noodles) and bibimbap (a spicy mixed rice bowl), both of which were delicious. Health Education Coordinator Esther Lee was present to translate, while Monica Bhagwan, program manager for Leah’s Pantry, observed and asked questions about the cooking process.

This session was part of an effort to develop Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese recipes for Eatfresh.org, one of multiple databases of healthy recipes for low-income individuals and families eligible for CalFresh/SNAP. In the past, these databases have not included many culturally relevant dishes; APIFM in partnership with Leah’s Pantry hopes to change that one recipe at a time, gradually increasing the number of recipes from Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander cultures.

APIFM staff enlisted the help of community members to brainstorm recipes and prepare the dishes in collaboration with Leah’s Pantry staff. The recipes were developed to align with dietary guidelines suggesting low sodium, low sugar and less fat. For example, the chapchae was prepared with less soy sauce.

The Korean recipe development group was comprised of participants from APIFM’s Healthy Eating & Active Living (HEAL) workshop series at Koreatown Youth and Community Center (KYCC)‘s affordable housing, the Menlo Family Apartments in Koreatown.

The Koreatown HEAL participants will also be offering a free class, How to Make Kimchi, 4:30 p.m. June 17 at Doulos Mission Church, so come by and learn from the experts!

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Staff Profile: Linda Huynh

What’s your role at APIFM? How’d you first get connected? What are you working on?

Hi! I am Linda Huynh and I am APIFM’s Community Engagement Coordinator. I was introduced to APIFM back when it use to be called APIOPA. In a previous job, I partnered with APIOPA and the students of Mark Keppel High School in promoting environmental justice. Together, we promoted safer bike routes in Monterey Park with the help of BIKE SGV. In addition, we promoted cleaner air, especially around the classrooms of Mark Keppel (which is right next to the 10 freeway). I am currently outreaching and engaging with community members to participate in our Healthy Eating and Active Living program. In this program, we are providing spaces for participants to become more knowledgeable in how to eat healthier, how to cook healthier (through cooking demonstrations), and to become more physically active.

Why is APIFM’s work important to you?

I believe it’s important to open up more opportunities for Asians living in the United States, because it will ultimately give us a fairer chance to succeed in life. I am drawn to APIFM’s mission to cultivate a healthier movement for Asian communities. I LOVE APIFM’s approach in providing healthier access to foods, nutrition education and physical activities. The organization is providing opportunities for Asian communities to live a more sustainable lifestyle.

In addition, I find it humbling to work with Asian-ethnic and multi-generational groups (especially since I grew up Asian-American to first generation parents). I have experience working with Chinese and Vietnamese groups in the San Gabriel Valley. Therefore, I am looking forward to expanding my horizon with other Asian-ethnic groups in Los Angeles. APIFM is giving me the opportunity to outreach and build relationships with community partners and residents of Chinatown, Historic Filipinotown, Little Tokyo, and Koreatown.

What’s your life like outside of work? What are your hobbies/passions?

In my off time, I love traveling, visiting museums and gardens, and eating out in the SGV. In addition, I find it relaxing to take pictures and experimenting with different cameras. I get my inspiration from my favorite cinematographer, Christopher Doyle.

Linda Huynh is a Community Engagement Coordinator at APIFM. She has eight years of nonprofit experience. She earned her B.A. in Television & Film Media Studies: Tele-communications and minored in Art Studio from California State University-Los Angeles. Linda identifies as ethnically Chinese, Southeast Asian-American and uses she/her pronouns.

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Chinatown Office: Wish List

We moved into our comfy Chinatown satellite office early last month. No worries, you did not miss the grand opening! Before inviting our friends and families over, we wanted to clean up the space and get it well furnished. Once fully operational, this space will be our headquarters for healthy eating/active living programming we are running for API communities in Chinatown, Historic Filipinotown, Little Tokyo, and Koreatown!

 

In order to open our doors, we need your help! We’re still short items for our new office and would appreciate any of the following items. We will gladly write a tax donation letter for all donations given to us.

 

Decorations:
  • wall decals
  • culturally relevant decorations
Furniture:
  • office tables (5)
  • side table
  • office chairs
  • trash bins
  • couch
  • lockable cabinets/drawers

Electronics:

  • microwave
  • mini-fridge
  • hot water pot (similar item)
  • office supplies – staplers, tape, binder clips
  • all-in-one printer/scanner

Other:

  • cleaning supplies
  • Brita Filter

*Updated May 9, 2017

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Journey to the Marathon

The following post was written by our good friend, and Forward Movement supporter Dan Huynh

When I signed up to train for the 2017 LA Marathon with API Forward Movement (APIFM), a part of me doubted whether it was going to be possible. I didn’t see myself as a runner. Growing up, I was teased for being taller and bigger than boys my age. Family and friends, with good intentions, reminded me to be more feminine. So, I thought I could really only be one type of person: someone who looked athletic but for various social norms and expectations, shouldn’t engage in those activities.

Then 2016 happened.

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Celebrating Our History in the Movement

By Ailene Q. Ignacio

Growing up in Los Angeles, you are ingrained at an early age with the monumental value of the warrior, Cesar Chavez. You know him not only as the Mexican-American father of the United Farm Workers (UFW), but as the fearless leader and activist who birthed the Delano Grape Strike of 1965-1970.

However, while Chavez did indeed pivot the past and current movement for farm worker rights in California and all over the country, many of us are still unaware of the fact that Chavez did not actually conceptualize and activate the strike initially.

Rather, the Delano Grape Strike was initiated by a humble, yet militant man by the name of Larry Dulay Itliong. A native of the Republika ng Pilipinas (more commonly known as the Philippines), Itliong led numerous unionization and labor justice movements as early as 1940s.

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Staff Profile: Paul Hoang Nguyen

Greetings everyone! My name is Paul Hoang Nguyen and I am currently a Program Coordinator at Forward Movement (FM). I graduated from the University of California, Irvine with a Bachelor’s in Sociology. When I am not a Program Coordinator, I enjoy hobbies like cooking, mastering the techniques of olympic weightlifting, running unreasonable amounts of mileage, and the occasional working on the next episodes of #paultable4one.
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We are Champions for Change!

We’re so excited to launch our Healthy Eating & Active Living (HEAL) project, funded by the Department of Public Health’s Champions for Change Initiative. Our HEAL project includes workshops on healthy eating, exercise, and cooking in Chinatown, Little Tokyo, Historic Filipinotown, and Koreatown. Big shout out to our amazing organization partners–Little Tokyo Service Center, Pilipino Workers’ Center, and Koreatown Youth and Community Center! Stay tuned for updates about upcoming HEAL classes and activities. Interested in helping out? Let us know! We’re looking for health educators, nutritionists, chefs, exercise instructors (Tai Chi, zumba, etc.), interpreters, and general volunteers. Email Linda Huynh (lindahuynh@apifm.org) for more info!

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Be Forward and Sustain the Movement

With the current state of our country and the new administration, we are faced with leadership that wants to move us backward–to roll back the rights and access we have fought so hard for in the name of racial, social, economic, and health justice. We are challenging this affront with a clear emphasis on pushing forward.

For those who can, we ask you to reach deep and support our work by becoming a monthly sustainer. We want to continue fusing advocacy, education, and leadership development, so that the people who are directly impacted are the people driving not only the conversation, but also the change. A donation of even just $5/month goes a long way in helping us fight for vibrant, long-lasting, and healthy communities.

From March 16th to March 23rd, we are organizing a sustainer campaign to find at least 30 sustainers to support API Forward Movement. These 30 will be recognized and immortalized in the API Forward Movement history books as the very first sustainers of our work!

Don’t get us wrong; being a sustainer also comes with perks. Take a look at what comes along with the great feeling of knowing you helped an awesome community-based org.

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APIOPA becomes API Forward Movement

Dear friends and supporters,

As many of you know, APIOPA (Asian and Pacific Islander Obesity Prevention Alliance) was started in the early 2000s by fierce advocates for our communities. Our founders were fired up by the need to include APIs in work to address the obesity epidemic, which is why our organization’s name centered obesity prevention. This explicit emphasis was an important tool for pushing public health conversations to include the real health needs and cultural specificities of our communities, which had been left out of the discussion.

Since then, APIOPA’s work has broadened and flexed to ensure APIs are not only represented within, but also leading efforts to address a range of health and environmental justice issues. Many of you know us for this work, whether it’s our food justice activism through our CSA and collaboration with local Asian American farmers, or our environmental justice work with youth leaders in San Gabriel Valley. And many of you have participated in or supported our active living programs, like Bike to Japan and our monthly hikes. More recently, we have also been working on transportation and parks, to ensure that discussions on these key issues include our faces, our voices, our cultures, and our languages. Our team is constantly working to ensure that API voices always have a seat at the table, and leadership in our communities.

It’s this passion for amplifying the needs of our communities and moving our leadership forward that motivates us. To honor these core motivations, we are officially changing our name.

Effective today, APIOPA becomes Asian Pacific Islander Forward Movement (APIFM). *insert mic drop*

For short, we’ll go by Forward Movement! (Also, here’s our new social media: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Youtube )

Forward: With the current state of our country and the new administration, we are faced with leadership that wants to move us backward–to roll back the rights and access we have fought so hard for in the name of racial, social, economic, and health justice. We are challenging this affront with a clear emphasis on pushing forward. Pushing forward to protect the basic rights of our diverse, immigrant families and beloved communities. Pushing forward to expand those rights and enhance access to the resources we all need to live healthy, vibrant lives in empowered communities. We want to be forward in our approach to advocacy and justice, and to support everyone in looking forward, with hope, to a better tomorrow.

Movement: Localized, grassroots organizing in our Southern California API communities is the foundation for our work because we are committed to building movements for healthy change. We want to continue fusing advocacy, education, and leadership development, so that the people who are directly impacted are the people driving not only the conversation, but also the change. And for us, as a health justice group, movement means getting both physically and politically active. When we hike, bike, walk or roll together, we aren’t just exercising–we are also actively facilitating one another’s growth to become local health activists who are part of a larger movement for healthier communities.

Our new mission is clear: Forward Movement is here to cultivate, healthy, long-lasting, and vibrant Asian and Pacific Islander communities through grassroots organizing. This identity honors the work we have already been doing–working with API community members throughout Los Angeles County, Orange County, and beyond to increase access to healthy foods and healthy environments–and conveys our ongoing commitment to tackling, as organizers, the root causes and systemic issues that inform our ability to live healthy lives.

Thank you for being part of the APIOPA family up to this point, and we can’t wait to keep building together as API Forward Movement.

In solidarity,
The Forward Movement Team

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