News

03.29.2022

Advancing Justice Affiliation Redistributes Funds to Partner Organizations

For Immediate Release

March 29, 2022 

As a leading network of independently-run Asian American Pacific Islander civil and legal rights nonprofits, we find ourselves in a unique position to support our community partners. In 2021, amid a national reckoning with anti-Asian racism and violence and a deeper understanding of the systemic solutions we need to live safely, the Asian Americans Advancing Justice affiliation was fortunate to receive an influx of one-time donations from individuals, companies, and foundations. These supporters shared their desire to contribute to efforts that empower Asian American communities and address anti-Asian hate and violence. For many supporters, these contributions marked the first time they had intentionally given to Asian and Asian American organizations and communities. 

We are deeply appreciative of this support. We also know that our work to build a more just world is made possible through partnerships, including with community-based organizations and coalitions across the country. Most of these organizations have not received the same amount of support from donors. 

As some of the largest organizations led by and serving Asian American communities in the country, we often apply for funding together with coalition and movement partners and encourage donors to also support their work directly. In that spirit of collaboration, the Advancing Justice affiliation is redistributing $3 million to 68 organizations spanning 15 states, as well as $600,000 to the Emergency Victims and Survivors Fund in Georgia. These organizations serve a wide range of communities and focus on many different issue areas, including racial justice, community safety, gender-based violence response, economic security, immigrant rights, and voting rights, among others. Together, they represent many of the affiliation’s closest community-based and coalition partners. 

While the Advancing Justice affiliation is not a funder nor does it seek to become one, we believe this is the right decision for our organizations and our partners in this moment. We also know that these funds are nowhere near enough to match the scale of the challenges we are facing and that as much as we intended to support as many organizations as possible, we did not reach everyone. According to Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy, only 0.2% of grants nationwide in 2018 were designated for AAPI communities. We hope this funding decision encourages our donors and others to learn more about the organizations listed below, support their crucial work, and ask questions about the groups and places that need more support. 

If you have questions about this affiliation update, please reach out to us. 

In solidarity,

Aarti Kohli, Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus

Connie Chung Joe, Advancing Justice – Los Angeles

Grace Pai, Advancing Justice – Chicago

Phi Nguyen, Advancing Justice – Atlanta

John C. Yang, Advancing Justice – AAJC

Organizations Receiving Redistributed Funds (in alphabetical order)

Abolitionist Teachers Network (GA)

ACDC TX (TX)

API Equality – LA (CA)

API Equality – Northern California (CA)

Apna Ghar, Inc. (IL) 

Asian Americans United (PA)

Asian Youth Center (CA)

Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence (CA)

Asian Prisoner Support Committee (CA)

Asian Solidarity Collective (CA)

Asian Texans for Justice (TX) 

Athena’s Warehouse (GA) 

AYPAL (CA) 

Boat People BPSOS – Houston (TX)

CAIR-Chicago (IL)

CAIR-Georgia (GA)

CAIR-San Francisco Bay Area (CA) 

Center for Asian Americans in Action (CA)

Center for Empowering Immigrants and Refugees (CA)    

Chinatown Service Center (CA)

Chinese Community Center (TX)

Coalition for a Better Chinese American Community (CBCAC) (IL) 

Demo Lab South (GA)

Empowering Pacific Islander Communities (EPIC) (CA)

Emergency Victims and Survivors Fund (GA)

Freedom Inc. (WI) 

Fresno Center (CA)

Georgia Muslim Voter Project (GA)

Georgia Youth Justice Coalition (GA) 

Hamilton- Madison House (NY)

HANA Center (IL) 

Hmong Innovating Politics (HIP) (CA)

Indo-American Center (IL)

InterFaith Movement (CA)

Jakara Movement (CA)

KAN-WIN (IL)

Khmer Girls in Action (CA)         

Korean American Coalition (CA)

Korean American Family Service Center (KAFSC) (NY)

Korean Community Services (CA)

Kutturan Chamoru Foundation (CA)

Little Tokyo Service Center (CA)

MN8 (MN)

Montgomery County Progressive Asian American Network (MoCoPAAN) (MD)

Narika (CA)

New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice (NJ)

North Carolina Asian Americans Together (NC) 

OCA-Houston (TX)

OPAWL – Building AAPI Feminist Leadership (OH)

Orange County Asian Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA) (CA)

Partnership for the Advancement of New Americans (PANA) (CA)

Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition (PA)

Pilipino Workers Center (CA)

Raksha (GA) 

Refugee and Immigrant Transitions (CA)

Rhode Island Youth Student Movement (PrYSM) (RI)

Rising Voices (MI)

SEAC Village (NC) 

Sikh Coalition

South Asian Network (CA)  

Southeast Asian Freedom Network (SEAFN) 

Southeast Asian Mutual Assistance Association Coalition (SEAMAAC) (PA)

Southland Integrated Services (CA)       

Thai Community Development Center (CA)

The Devi Co-op (GA) 

VietLead (PA)

Vietnamese Association of Illinois (IL)

Womankind (NY)

Woori Juntos (TX)

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03.24.2022

Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago Applauds Appointment of First Asian American Woman to City Council

For Immediate Release

March 24, 2022 

Contact:
Kevin Hsia, Advancing Justice Chicago, khsia@advancingjustice-chicago.org
Grace Pai, 224-289-5291, gpai@advancingjustice-chicago.org

On Thursday afternoon, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced her appointment of Nicole Lee to fill the 11th ward aldermanic vacancy. Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago, the leading pan-Asian advocacy organization in Chicago, issued the following statement. Our Executive Director Grace Pai can be available for further comment.

“We are excited that Mayor Lightfoot has appointed an Asian American woman to this seat. This is a historic appointment – Nicole Lee will be the first Chinese American and first Asian American woman to serve on Chicago City Council. We look forward to working with Nicole on issues that are important to the Asian American community, like language access, affordable housing & public safety.”

Nicole Lee speaking on ABC7 livestream of Mayor Lightfoot's press conference announcing the appointment on March 24, 2022

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Photo Credit: Screenshot of ABC7 livestream of Mayor Lightfoot’s press conference announcing the appointment on March 24, 2022

Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago builds power through collective advocacy and organizing to achieve racial equity. Learn more at www.advancingjustice-chicago.org.

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03.12.2022

Community Remembrance Day Brings Collective Healing

 

For Immediate Release

March 12, 2022 

Contact:
Kevin Hsia, Advancing Justice Chicago, khsia@advancingjustice-chicago.org
Ellie Kleiman, Hana Center, ekleiman@hanacenter.org
Felicia Jia, KAN-WIN, fjia@kanwin.org

On a cold afternoon in Horner Park, the collective heart of the Asian American Chicagoland community was beating together – we gathered to remember the six Asian women whose lives were lost on March 16, 2021  in Atlanta. Approximately 100 people came together to remember the victims, honor their memories, and share a moment of quiet reflection with community. More than passing grief or a moment in the news cycle, the event commemorated those womens’ lives, ensuring their story continues to be told.   

The program for the remembrance event was led by Asian American youth affiliated with HANA Center, KAN-WIN, and Advancing Justice | Chicago. Moving statements, poetry, and music lifted the commemoration of the one year anniversary of the Atlanta spa shootings.

Reverend Asayo Horibe from the Buddhist Temple of Chicago and Angelynn Jimenez from Women That Fight, a youth leadership program at HANA Center, began the event with a spiritual offering and an original poetry reading.   

 
Next, youth leaders from KAN-WIN shared a joint youth statement from the three co-sponsoring organizations. Joie Cabrera and Emily Lim gave a rousing call that today and always, we fight not just for the Asian American community, but all marginalized communities.  

Emily shared, “we grieve the passings of each victim while finding ways to support one another with compassion and warmth. Personally, for me as a Korean-American teenager, it brings me great sadness that people of my Korean ethnicity were killed in this event. I feel a heavy emotional connection to them through our shared Korean heritage and culture. Their pain is forever my pain as I cherish their memories and lives while I mourn upon their passings.” Reminiscing back, Joie shared, ”that night we all shared complex feelings; leaving our community, our people, in shock and fear.  We cannot let this event become minimized and brushed off as something not worth hearing about. Forever and always remember March 16, 2021.” 

Closing the event, Joy Messinger read an original poem and Chumi Park shared a musical performance or Arirang, a Korean folk song. During her performance, guests were invited to pay respects at the community altar. 

We thank our partners and co-sponsors:  HANA Center, KAN-WIN, Apna Ghar, Asian American Midwest Progressives, Healing to Action, National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, HEART Women & Girls, Japanese American Citizens League, Chinese American Service League, and South Asian American Policy and Research Institute. We also want to recognize the youth leaders at KAN-WIN, HANA Center, and Asian Americans Advancing Justice who have helped organize today’s vigil. 

Photo Credit: Kevin Hsia, Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago

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Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago builds power through collective advocacy and organizing to achieve racial equity. Learn more at www.advancingjustice-chicago.org

HANA Center is a Chicago-area community-based organization working to meet the critical needs of Korean, Asian American, and multiethnic immigrant communities and build power toward systemic change. HANA Center has offices in Chicago and Prospect Heights, Illinois, and is a local affiliate of the National Korean American Service and Education Consortium (NAKASEC). Learn more at  hanacenter.org.

KAN-WIN’S mission is to eradicate gender-based violence, including domestic violence and sexual assault, especially for women and children across Asian American communities and beyond through culturally competent services, community engagement, and advocacy. Learn more at www.kanwin.org.

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03.11.2022

JOB POSTING: Community Organizer

Community Organizer Job Description

BACKGROUND AND MISSION

Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago builds power through collective advocacy and organizing to achieve racial equity.

For nearly 30 years, Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago has worked to bring together the Asian American community and create change in our communities. We are deeply committed to grassroots community organizing and we invest in the leadership of grassroots community members through trainings, community education, civic engagement, and collaborative issue-based campaigns. In order to strengthen our work and transform the inequities in our city, state, and Midwest region, we work with multiracial coalitions that emphasize racial equity, accountability to those most impacted, and an infrastructure of grassroots leadership. Our advocacy work focuses on promoting racial, economic, and immigrant justice, including initiatives in the areas of voting rights, language access, and immigrant rights.

As part of the national Asian Americans Advancing Justice affiliation, Advancing Justice | Chicago is a leader in the nationwide Asian American movement. Regionally, Advancing Justice | Chicago is prioritizing the Midwest, and collaborating with partners across the Midwestern states to tackle common struggles and build power.

POSITION DESCRIPTION

The Community Organizer position is an opportunity for a strategic and motivated relationship-builder to build power in the Asian American community, develop grassroots leadership, lead strategic issue campaigns, and move community members to take action.

Depending on experience, this position could be elevated to a Chicago Organizing Manager position, with additional responsibilities of managing community organizers. Additional responsibilities and qualifications to be considered for an Organizing Manager position are described below.

This position will fall under the staff sharing agreement between Advancing Justice | Chicago and Asian American Midwest Progressives (AAMP) so a portion of time may be spent on 501(c)(4) activities including partisan electoral work.

KEY RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Develop grassroots leaders through A Just Chi, Advancing Justice | Chicago’s base-building program for community members who want to build power, work on issue campaigns, and advance racial equity;
  • Organize in-person and virtual events, workshops, and trainings;
  • Engage a distributed base of individuals through consistent virtual outreach (e.g., SMS/texting outreach, emails, social media, etc.);
  • Represent Advancing Justice | Chicago in coalition spaces and contribute to coalition-led issue-based campaigns, primarily around immigrant rights;
  • Mobilize community members to take action on key issues, including immigrant rights, language access, and criminal justice reform;
  • Manage civic engagement program for a sub-group of Pan-Asian Voter Empowerment (PAVE) Coalition partners, including mentoring and coaching staff at partner organizations, providing technical support on voter outreach efforts, negotiating memoranda of understanding, and troubleshooting challenges;
  • Coordinate and lead annual 300-person lobby day in Springfield, including managing a coalition-based planning committee;
  • Assist development staff in program-related fundraising;
  • Collaborate with other staff on organization-wide initiatives.

ADDITIONAL RESPONSIBILITIES FOR ORGANIZING MANAGER ROLE

  • Supervise 1-2 community organizers

(more…)

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03.10.2022

Remembering March 16 and A Call for Reflection and Action

For Immediate Release

March 10, 2022 

Contact:
Kevin Hsia, Advancing Justice Chicago, khsia@advancingjustice-chicago.org
Ellie Kleiman, Hana Center, ekleiman@hanacenter.org
Felicia Jia, KAN-WIN, fjia@kanwin.org

March 16 will be the one-year anniversary of the murders of eight people, including six Asian women employees at spas in the metro Atlanta area. As the organization that led the rapid response efforts to directly support victims, survivors, and their families, Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Atlanta is welcoming partner organizations and the public to join in a community remembrance day on Saturday, March 12 and observe Wednesday, March 16 as a sacred day for quiet reflection.  

In solidarity, Chicago will join Atlanta by organizing a local community remembrance day on March 12. Asian American community-based organizations are coming together to commemorate the anniversary of the Atlanta spa shootings by gathering at Horner Park (2741 W Montrose Ave) on Saturday, March 12th, at 2pm to remember the victims, honor their memories, and come together as a community. RSVP to the Facebook event here.

The program for the remembrance event will be led by Asian American youth affiliated with HANA Center, KAN-WIN, and Advancing Justice | Chicago. The event will include a youth spoken word performance, a Collective Youth Statement, spiritual offerings, and a musical performance. We are requesting that all attendees wear masks and socially distance. The event is being organized by Advancing Justice | Chicago, HANA Center, and KAN-WIN and is being co-sponsored by Apna Ghar, Chinese American Service League, Healing to Action, Japanese American Citizens League Chicago, National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF), and South Asian American Policy and Research Institute (SAAPRI). 

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Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago builds power through collective advocacy and organizing to achieve racial equity. Learn more at www.advancingjustice-chicago.org

HANA Center is a Chicago-area community-based organization working to meet the critical needs of Korean, Asian American, and multiethnic immigrant communities and build power toward systemic change. HANA Center has offices in Chicago and Prospect Heights, Illinois, and is a local affiliate of the National Korean American Service and Education Consortium (NAKASEC). Learn more at  hanacenter.org.

KAN-WIN’S mission is to eradicate gender-based violence, including domestic violence and sexual assault, especially for women and children across Asian American communities and beyond through culturally competent services, community engagement, and advocacy. Learn more at www.kanwin.org.

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