Passing the BALL we are in this together

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Campaign Materials

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Equity Summit Provides Renewed Energy, for Working Towards Racial Equity Goal in Minneapolis

Tie Oei and William Harrison were privilaged to represent Asian Media Access and the Bicultural Active Living Lifestyle initiative at the Policy Link 2018 Equity Summit in Chicago, IL last month. We split the conference sessions up to maximize our take aways, but due to 6+ concurrent sessions at any given time, we only covered about ¼ of the entire conference! It was a wonderful and enlightening experience which allows us to bring new perspective and insight to both Asian Media Access and the Bicultural Active Living Lifestyle initiative.

***This article originally appeared in the Minneapolis Promise Zones newsletter

From April 11-13, the City of Minneapolis, including the Minneapolis Promise Zone (MPZ) team, participated in Policy Link’s 2018 Equity Summit in Chicago, IL. The conference, which drew over 4,000 attendees from all over the country, directly aligns with the MPZ’s top goal: increasing racial equity. In fact, the MPZ is the only one of the 22 Promise Zones across the nation with a stated racial equity goal.

In addition to City Equity and MPZ teams, City Council members were in attendance along with other City representatives from Community and Economic Development Planning, Intergovernmental Relations, Innovation Team, The Resilience in Communities After Stress & Trauma (ReCAST), and more. The City’s strong showing represents an enterprise-wide commitment to learning and implementing equitable policies both organizationally and City-wide.

This year’s Equity Summit was divided into three main workshop series: Equitable Economy, Healthy Communities of Opportunity, and Just Society. Each of the workshop series included around fifteen large sessions, with a panel of about four people, participants could choose from to attend. One of the Equitable Development workshops, Housing Development Without Displacement, covered topics like: ‘people-driven alternative’ housing models and strategic community-centered public-private partnerships.

“The Equity Summit provided a re-charge for me and my team’s work said Julianne Leerssen, the MPZ Manager and one of the City’s two equity managers. “Meeting so many others engaged in similar work around the country, especially people of color, reinforces not only the importance of the work, but the fact that Minneapolis has many valuable resources and examples to draw from when considering which policies may have the biggest impact if implemented.”

Some of the ideas taken away from the Summit included a lesson from the organization, City Life/Vida Urbana, which focuses on the significant role Community Land Trusts (CLTs) play in preventing displacement of low-to-moderate-income people of color in Jamaica Plain, a neighborhood of Boston, MA. Dudley Neighbors Inc., created the CLT mentioned above in 1988, they now own 30 acres of land with 226 units of affordable housing. City Life/Vida Urbana is also a member of the Right to the City Alliance, which recently released a report detailing similar ‘people-driven alternative’ housing models like Community Land Trusts called, Communities over Commodities. Ron Sims, former Deputy Secretary, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), concentrated on the responsibility of the Federal government to leverage their influence and convince developers to include a significant number of affordable housing units for lower income households.

The final workshop series, Healthy Communities of Opportunity, included a workshop discussing the importance of place-based, or collective impact, initiatives, where the goal is to funnel streams of resources to neighborhoods of concentrated poverty, which are often racially segregated. The Promise Zone initiative, led by the City of Minneapolis and HUD, is one of several place-based Federal-local initiatives. The MPZ team works to bring additional Federal dollars into North Minneapolis while concurrently pursuing local policy education and change for partners, stakeholders, and community members working on issues, such as economic development, that are critical to increasing racial equity via more and better jobs, housing, and health.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space][image src=”3536″ alt=”It’s Not An Equity Summit Unless It’s An Equity Summit” href=”” title=”It’s Not An Equity Summit Unless It’s An Equity Summit” info_content=”” lightbox_caption=”” id=”” class=”” style=””][vc_separator color=”custom” accent_color=”#4f6a35″][vc_column_text disable_pattern=”true” align=”left” el_class=”ball-cam” css=”.vc_custom_1526520823136{margin-bottom: 0px !important;}”]

May BALL Announcements:


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1. AMA Promotes Bicultural Healthy Living Framework

Asian Media Access has been busy sharing with our colleagues about the Bicultural Healthy Living Framework since 2014; not melting pot nor salad bar, but a new way for immigrants and refugees to see themselves through a bicultural lens.

Biculturalism is a philosophy, that people, who masters the rules and norms of their new culture without abandoning their own language, values and social support. It refers to a sense of belonging to a broader cultural communities and common humanity, promoting the ‘Cultural Resilience’ that integrates diverse cultures together. Bicultural Healthy Living concepts are built upon a foundation of cultural practices and pedagogy that are integrated with, but not diminished by, western philosophies. This approach is based in the strength of families, and each culture’s values that give everyone a place within the community and the expectation of belonging.

We have incorporated Bicultural Healthy Living – cultural integration model – into all our program design, communication, evaluation, etc. We have been sharing such Framework at:

a) 05/17/2018 at Augsburg University for “International Social Work Conference”
Invite everyone to participate in a lively discussions on areas of Bicultural Healthy Living in a global setting.

b) 04/28/2018 at Sanford Middle School (3524 42nd Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55406) for “Urban Showcase”
AMA Team has showcased the Bicultural Healthy Living Video Series, with emphasis on youth highlighting their own interpretation of their bicultural identity.

c) 04/21/2018 at Johnson High School for “Beyond Our Walls: Equity Summit”

d) 04/11/2018 – 04/13/2018 at Hyatt Regency Chicago for “Equity Summit”
AMA Team has promoted the Bicultural Healthy Living at both Summits, and built on what we have learned about advancing equity and justice and push to achieve the scale required for all to reach our full potential with bicultural lens.

[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space][image src=”3534″ alt=”BALL Banner Hangs Out with a Balloon” href=”” title=”BALL Banner Hangs Out with a Balloon” info_content=”” lightbox_caption=”” id=”” class=”” style=””][vc_column_text disable_pattern=”true” align=”left” el_class=”ball-cam” css=”.vc_custom_1526520962245{margin-bottom: 0px !important;}”]Joint by other allies, we explored the complexity and urgency of building a multiracial coalition at this pivotal moment for our nation. Solidarity with the emerging people of color majority is essential to redress past harms, embrace inclusion, build an equitable economy, and model true democracy. We all felt the equity movement is stronger than ever, bolstered by our combined understanding of multiculturalism and the interconnectedness of issues.

e) 03/30/2018 at Johnson Senior High School (1349 Arcade St, St Paul, MN 55106) for “Govie Leadership Summit.”

f) 03/03/2018 at University of WI, Stout for “Mental Health in the Hmong Community Conference

g) 03/02/2018 – 03/03/2018 at University of WI, La Crosse for “Widening the Circle Conference.”

h) 02/05/2018 at University of MN for “Power of Partnerships Conference”

At the first four conferences, AMA Team presented the “Working with Hmong Families Through Bicultural Healthy Living Framework,” highlighted our innovative Storytelling Engagement process with limited English proficient Hmong families through a bicultural healthy living lens to help the community to heal, and find their own voices

i) 02/01/2018 – 02/03/2018 at Union Square Hilton, San Francisco for “New Partnership for Smart Growth Conference.” AMA Team has presented the Bicultural Active Living Lifestyle – BALL Campaign at this national conference, to highlight the inclusivity of diverse cultural voices for overcoming social and economic inequities in the City Design that can be both responsive and resilient to disruptive forces, changing demographics, and economic development decisions.[/vc_column_text][image src=”3535″ alt=”BALL Video Student Presentation I Think” href=”” title=”BALL Video Student Presentation I Think” info_content=”” lightbox_caption=”” id=”” class=”” style=””][vc_separator color=”custom” accent_color=”#4f6a35″]

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2. A Students Reflection on Cultural Differences from a Trip Overseas

Lucy Vang was a member of Asian Media Access’ youth delegation that visited South Korea and China in December of 2016. Recently, she has expressed some nostalgia for the trip and took to Facebook to share a cultural difference memory that resurfaced during a recent Spring storm. She writes:

“[December 2016 – China]

There are a lot of stories that I’ve always wanted to share from my experience in China and South Korea. I know it’s been almost two years since then but it’s always so fun to reminisce about them again. There were so many cultural differences/cultural shocks in these countries but it never stopped me from wanting to learn more.

I feel that the small amount of older Hmong people I know are always so fearful of these differences and are always telling me to not love any other people because they are so different. If I marry someone who isn’t Hmong, they’ll make me eat tacos and I won’t like it, or something along those lines. It’s such a closed mindset but I have to understand that is how one is raised up to be. It is up to them to want to learn to change their mindset.

One big cultural difference that I found rather interesting was the importance of the umbrella.
Whenever it lightly rained in the states (like just an hour ago it did), you don’t really see anyone pulling out an umbrella at all (I walked in that rain like a warrior). I see the rain as an opportunity to imagine myself apart of a Korean drama or something, ya know what I mean?
In China, I remember we were walking to our next class and it began to drizzle. I ran straight into the rain but my younger host sister ran after me and insisted I was kept under the umbrella.
“No it’s okay!” I told her. But she and her best friend made sure water did not touch my shoulders at all. It was fascinating being cared for in that way. They walked alongside me for the whole trip. Yah, I felt special. \(^_^)/”[/vc_column_text][image src=”3532″ alt=”Lucy Student Reflection” href=”” title=”Lucy Student Reflection” info_content=”” lightbox_caption=”” id=”” class=”” style=””][vc_empty_space][/vc_column][/vc_row]