SEARAC Leadership and Advocacy Training ‘Successful’
Washington, D.C.–The Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC) was a success, drawing over 100 community leaders in its 14th annual Leadership and Advocacy Training last July 15-17.
SEARAC’s Leadership and Advocacy Training is the only national gathering to bring together Southeast Asian Americans across generational, ethnic, and socio-economic lines to learn the skills for advocating on behalf of underserved communities.
Training participants learned about policy advocacy, had an opportunity to network and strategize with colleagues from across the nation, and built relationships with decision makers at the federal level.
This year’s participants came from across the country, including Denver, CO; New Orleans, LA; Houston, TX; Boston, MA; Madison, WI and Seattle, WA. Participants either had heritage as refugees who arrived in the U.S. after the war in Southeast Asia, or work with Southeast Asian American communities.
“For the past 14 years, the Leadership and Advocacy Training has strengthened community members’ knowledge about policies impacting Cambodian, Laotian, and Vietnamese American communities,” said Doua Thor, executive director of SEARAC.
She added: “With the 2012 elections fast approaching and recent research showing that Asian Americans are the fastest-growing racial group in the United States, this year’s training is especially critical and is an opportunity for community members to engage in discussion with elected officials on important issues like health care access, education reform, deportation policies, and Social Security.”
Participant Giao Tran from Orange County, California explained why she chose to apply to this year’s training: “I hope to broaden my knowledge on issues that the Southeast Asian American community faces and to build skills, tools, and a network that will help provide me a clearer path to where I want to be and what I want to contribute to local communities through advocacy.”
SEARAC’s annual Leadership and Advocacy Training has graduated hundreds of alumni since 1998. An annual training is held in Washington, D.C. More recently, SEARAC has also hosted regional trainings in local communities, such as New Orleans, LA; Sacramento, CA; St. Paul, MN; Lowell, MA; and Long Beach, CA. SEARAC thanked its sponsors, State Farm®, Southwest Airlines, Google, and AT&T, for their generous support of this training.
SEARAC is a national organization that advances the interests of Cambodian, Laotian, and Vietnamese Americans by empowering communities through advocacy, leadership development, and capacity building to create a socially just and equitable society. Find out more at www.searac.org.
State Farm and its affiliates are the largest provider of car insurance in the U.S. and is a leading insurer in Canada. In addition to providing auto insurance quotes, their 17,800 agents and more than 65,000 employees serve 81 million policies and accounts – more than 79 million auto, home, life and health policies in the United States and Canada, and nearly 2 million bank accounts. State Farm is ranked No. 43 on the Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, visit www.statefarm.com.