The month of May is Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, and it is even more notable now—after more than a year in which the AAPI community has experienced a rise in racist attacks amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
In and around Seattle, and virtually, there are many ways you can celebrate and support AAPI causes.
Locally, the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce had some good ideas:
- Support local AAPI-owned businesses by using directories like Intentionalist.
- Support small businesses in Seattle’s Chinatown-International District by shopping a unique selection of retail, arts, gifts cards, and more through the C-ID online marketplace.
Refugee Artisan Initiative (RAI) is a Seattle-based organization helping AAPI women learn artisan skills to gain full-time employment, while also producing PPE for local medical facilities.
It has launched a GoFundMe (gofundme.com/f/help-rai-stopasianhate) to help raise $50,000 to enroll 20 more women into their training program and help combat Asian hate.
Ming-Ming Tung-Edelman, a Taiwanese immigrant who founded the RAI, said, “We stand with our AAPI community.
We stand against racism and hatred, and we stand for the eventual freedom in which all women in America are accepted, respected, and empowered.”
GoFundMe has also launched the #StopAsianHate Initiative, which provides a centralized, rallying point for those who want to donate and support. The centralized hub of fundraisers (gofundme.com/c/act/stop-aapi-hate) helps those affected by violence, provides increased protection for the AAPI community, is dedicated to helping AAPI neighborhoods and businesses flourish, and more.
The Wing Luke Museum has a (Our Stories Are Your Stories) #OSAYS campaign—celebrating the “unique voices and stories of our AAPI community to encourage understanding, empathy, and connection.”
Learn about Asian American heritage in Washington at visitseattle.org/things-to-do/arts-culture/cultural-heritage/asian-american.
Support AAPI-owned media like Northwest Vietnamese News and the Northwest Asian Weekly.
Have you watched our video yet on “The Story of Seattle Chinatown International District Murals”? Go here (youtu.be/VE9BA7KkbKc) if you haven’t.
Support these local nonprofits:
- Chinatown-International District BIA
- Japanese American Chamber of Commerce
- Korean American Chamber of Commerce WA State
- Ethnic Chamber of Commerce
- Filipino Chamber of Commerce of the Pacific Northwest
- Taiwanese Chamber of Commerce
- Washington Vietnamese American Chamber of Commerce
- Asia Pacific Cultural Center
And these national organizations:
- Asian American Advertising Federation
- Asian Americans Advancing Justice
- The Asian American Architects and Engineers Association
- Asian American Business Development Center
- Asian American Federation
- Asian American Government Executives Network (AAGEN)
- Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA)
- Asian American Legal Defense & Education Fund (AALDEF)
- Asian Women in Business
- Asian Pacific American Chamber of Commerce (APACC)
- Asian Pacific American Medical Students Association
- Asian Pacific Fund
- Asian/Pacific Islander Chamber of Commerce and Entrepreneurship Foundation
- The Center for Asian Pacific American Women
- Filipino American National Historical Society
- Japanese American Citizens League (JACL)
- Korean American Coalition (KAC)
- National Association of Asian American Professionals
- U.S. Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce
We are glad to see the current Congress and administration taking steps to fight anti-AAPI racism and to increase AAPI representation in our government.
This month is an opportunity to highlight, appreciate, and acknowledge AAPI contributions to this country.