AAPI News

Leadership Training - Connect the Dots

A speed networking and leadership development workshop

Always wanted to get involved politically but not sure where to start? Democrats Abroad is a global organization with groups all around the world representing and organizing Americans. Learn how you can have an impact!

The Asian American & Pacific Islander Caucus and the Hispanic Caucus invite you to a speed networking and leadership development workshop. 

The workshop will:

 

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Teatime: Building Community

AAPI Teatime on Zoom

„Teatime is a way for us to help members get to know each other and discover what’s important to us — and what we want to organise around,“ said Powen Shiah, member of the Global AAPI Caucus Steering Committee.

Members from the Europe, Middle-East and Africa region joined us for Teatime on January 28th to exchange experiences, ideas and stories. The first in a series of planned global and local community-building events hosted by the Global AAPI Caucus, the virtual event aimed to give members a relaxed space to connect.

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February News: Lunar New Year, Leadership Development, Black History Month

We have had so much to celebrate this past month with the inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, and the Senate victories in Georgia. It was again clear that votes from abroad were the margin of victory in both Georgia Senate races, and it was our hard work and the AAPI vote that made that difference. Help us keep the momentum going into 2022 and get involved with the Global AAPI Caucus.

Last week we hosted our inaugural Teatime networking event. More than twenty members from the EMEA region met to exchange experiences, ideas, and stories! We are looking forward to hosting the next one, and are expanding the series. We will be hosting another Teatime for the Asia Pacific region in early March, so make sure to check it out then!

The AAPI Caucus will host a Speed Networking and Leadership Development event with the Global Hispanic Caucus at the end of February. We will be hosting the event for each of the three regions, and we will explain how to get involved in leadership at the local, regional, and global levels. Dates and times are being finalized, so stay tuned! Join us for an evening of networking and ideation as we hear from outgoing leaders on the future of the organization.

In honor of Black History Month, our Caucus will be hosting a screening and discussion of American Revolutionary, a documentary about the Chinese-American activist Grace Lee Boggs who was active in the Black Power Movement. We will have two screenings:

We wish you a happy Lunar New Year and look forward to meeting you at one of our events this month!

Best wishes,

Cory J. Lemke and Emily Lines

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21-Day Racial Equity Habit Building Challenge

Have you ever made a successful change in your life? Perhaps you wanted to exercise more, eat less, or change jobs? Think about the time and attention you dedicated to the process. A lot, right? Change is hard. Creating effective social justice habits, particularly those dealing with issues of power, privilege, supremacy, and leadership is like any lifestyle change. Setting our intentions and adjusting what we spend our time doing is essential. It’s all about building new habits. Sometimes the hardest part is just getting started. The good news is, there’s an abundance of resources just waiting to empower you to be a more effective player in the quest for equity and justice.

Join the AAPI Caucus and the Global Black Caucus and take the 21-Day Racial Equity Habit Building Challenge!

About the 21-Day Racial Equity Habit Building Challenge 

  • For 21 days, do one action to further your understanding of power, privilege, supremacy, oppression, and equity 
  • This plan includes suggestions for readings, podcasts, videos, observations, and ways to form and deepen community connections. Click here to join the Challenge!

Lunar New Year - Celebrate!

Once a year, sometime between mid-January and the end of February, you may notice some interesting phenomena – friends feverishly making dumplings by hand, keto afficionados slurping down noodles, piles of citrus fruit in people’s dining rooms, and whole fish on the table with the head and eyes pointed right at you.  If you wonder what’s going on, the answer is easy – it’s the Lunar New Year!

And what does one do on Lunar New Year?  Well, regardless of which Asian culture is in your background, the answer is always the same: EAT! 

In Chinese culture, the food eaten at the New Year always represents some kind of good fortune in the future.  If you don’t eat it, you won’t get any.  So no matter where you are, you’ll find dumplings on the table – they represent wealth and look like a closed purse, full of money. Long noodles mean a long life and happiness, so don’t cut them!  Oranges and tangerines look like round golden coins and represent success and luck – in Cantonese the words also sound similar.  Leeks, garlic and green onions abound – not only are they good for your health, but they represent being smart and working hard. Sticky rice balls, often served as a desert in a sweet soup, represent family and togetherness.  And a whole fish is always on the table – head and tail attached.  The Chinese word for fish also sounds like the word for surplus – so eat up, and you will have more than you need in the New Year!

Living in Munich, I’m fortunate to have found an excellent Asian grocery store, but our tiny apartment and kitchen are way too small for a big sit-down dinner party. Instead, since the New Year celebrations are 14 days long, we spread out the feasting.  And with Covid-19 still hanging around like an uninvited guest, it’s a good thing that we have so much time to get all that luck under our belts.


Traditionally, the Lunar New Year is celebrated across most of Asia, with fireworks, gifts, family gatherings, and food.  The celebration stretches across multiple days (in China, 16 days!) and is also the largest annual human migration in the world – or it was, until Covid-19.  Many people head home for the celebration to visit parents, children, siblings and extended family.  Each culture celebrates differently, but the central tenets remain the same: family, food, and good fortune.

This year marks the start of the Year of the Metal Ox. According to the zodiac, people born in the year of the Ox are grounded, loyal, gentle and trustworthy.  More information and details can be found here in this TED-Ed video

Wondering about other Asian celebrations of the New Year?  Check out these articles and websites:

 

Share your New Year stories with us!  Email [email protected]. 




DAROK AAPI Talks with our Global Co-Chairs

On Saturday, Co-Chairs Cory Lemke and Emily Lines spoke with the Democrats Abroad South Korea AAPI Caucus about their experiences growing up, with politics, and as leaders in Democrats Abroad.

Watch the interview here!

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January News: Join us for our Inaugural Teatime on January 28th

Happy New Year! We hope everyone was able to recharge over the holidays and start your new year off well. So far, 2021 has already been a wild roller coaster ride. Many of us are still processing the upsetting (and infuriating!) events of January 6th at the Capitol. Please get in touch with your representatives in Congress and let them know how you feel. Information on how to contact Congress and a sample script can be found here. But starting January 20th, we’ll be looking forward with hope and excitement to the plans and leadership that are already being displayed by the Biden-Harris administration.

“Moving from being the marginalised to the margin of victory”: last month we co-hosted an online discussion that featured on the ground AAPI activists in Georgia and Tom Perez, Chairman of the Democratic National Committee. It was clear how important the AAPI vote was in the Georgia November election, and this did not go ignored by the Ossoff and Warnock campaigns. If you were not able to attend the event, you can check out our short event recap. We are so thankful for the Georgia voters that showed up and for the work of the activists we heard from to get Jon Ossoff and Reverend Raphael Warnock elected to the US Senate.

As we begin our first full year as a caucus, we will be focusing on growing our membership and continuing to advocate for AAPI concerns within Democrats Abroad. If you are interested in volunteering with the caucus, please reach out! You can find descriptions of various volunteer opportunities here: http://www.democratsabroad.org/aapi_volunteer

Our first event this year will be Teatime Networking on Thursday, January 28th. We’ll be speed networking to give everyone a chance to meet each other, and talking about our experiences as Asian and Pacific Islander Americans living overseas. This will be the inaugural teatime event and will continue as an event series throughout the year.

We look forward to what 2021 has in store and to making even more of a difference in DA and at home!

With gratitude,

Cory J. Lemke and Emily Lines

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2021 Day of Service

Join us, President-Elect Joe Biden, and Vice-President Elect Kamala Harris on in the National Day of Service on January 18, 2021.

For service opportunities - even socially distanced ones - in 2021, please click here: https://bideninaugural.org/day-of-service/

For Volunteer opportunities at DA, please click here: https://www.democratsabroad.org/volunteer

For Volunteer opportunities with the AAPI Caucus, please click here: https://www.democratsabroad.org/aapi_volunteer

 


Event Recap: Georgia on our Mind - AAPI Outreach Organisers and Tom Perez

 

Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) are “moving from being the marginalised to the margin of victory” according to Vyanti Joseph, AAPI constituency and outreach coordinator for the Warnock for Senate campaign in Georgia. 

In a panel webinar on December 17th, Ms. Joseph, along with DNC chair Tom Perez, DNC AAPI caucus chair Bel Leong-Hong, AAPI constituency and outreach coordinator for the Ossoff for Senate campaign Cam Ashling and AAPI coalition director for the Georgia Democrats Linh Nguyen, spoke with Democrats Abroad about the growing importance and influence of the AAPI community on local and national politics in the US.

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December News: Georgia Peaches, Teatime, and 2021

Happy Holidays! 2020 presented the world with unprecedented challenges, but this has only motivated the AAPI Caucus to work harder. We are proud of our accomplishments in the past year and are ready to answer Joe Biden’s call to action - build back better.

It’s hard to believe that this journey to form an AAPI Caucus just began in April this year and we officially launched at the Global Meeting in June. We got off to a running start and haven’t looked back since.

  • We hosted several talks with AAPI leaders to learn about organizing in our community.
  • We hosted a Mid-Autumn Festival to celebrate our collective heritage.
  • We created AAPI language content to help get out the vote for the general election.
  • And our work is not done!

Georgia On Our Mind: AAPI Outreach Organizers & Tom Perez

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