Celebrate AAPI Heritage
May is Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month – a celebration of Asian and Pacific Islander individuals and communities in the United States. Asian/Pacific is a broad term. It encompases people from the Asian continent and the Pacific islands of Melanesia (New Guinea, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Fiji and the Solomon Islands), Micronesia (Marianas, Guam, Wake Island, Palau, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru and the Federated States of Micronesia), and Polynesia (New Zealand, Hawaiian Islands, Rotuma, Midway Islands, Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Cook Islands, French Polynesia and Easter Island).
On May 7th, 1843 Manjiro, a 14-year old fisherman, arrived in the United States via whaling ship. He is considered the first Japanese immigrant to come to the United States. May 10th, 1869 marks the completion of the transcontinental railroad, which was built largely by Chinese immigrants in very poor conditions. For these reasons, Congress chose May to celebrate AAPI heritage.
In this blog, you can find information on ways to support and celebrate the AAPI community. In addition to the virtual and non-virtual celebrations below, you can also celebrate AAPI heritage with books and movies – sharing with your family is encouraged!
Stop AAPI Hate
Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 6,603 anti-Asian racist incidents, mostly against women, reported in the United States. Discrimination against the AAPI community isn’t new or isolated; rather, it has deep roots in systemic racism and white supremacy. Xenophobia and widespread disinformation during the Covid-19 pandemic have led to an increase in racist incidents, including violence, against the AAPI community. The Davis Food Co-op condemns attacks against Asian/Pacific Americans and stands in solidarity with our Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander community members.
If you witness a hate incident, report it to Stop AAPI Hate. Additionally, here are five ways to help someone experiencing hate:
- Take Action: Approach the targeted person, introduce yourself, and offer support.
- Actively Listen: Ask before taking any actions and respect the targeted person’s wishes. Monitor the situation if needed.
- Ignore Attacker: Using your discretion, attempt to calm the situation by using your voice, body language, or distractions.
- Accompany: If the situation escalates, invite the targeted person to join you in leaving.
- Offer Emotional Support: Help the targeted person by asking how they’re feeling. Assist them in figuring out what they want to do next.
Support the AAPI Community
The pandemic has disproportionately affected AAPI businesses owners. According to a recent study, “more than 84% of AAPI [business] owners say COVID-19 has [had] a negative effect on their business … [and] one in three female AAPI owners have also experienced racial bias”. Support Asian/Pacific American folks in our community by regularly patronizing AAPI-owned restaurants, business, and by buying from AAPI artisans.
You can also support AAPI business by buying Asian/Pacific American owned brands. Here are some of the Asian/Pacific American owned brands we carry at the Co-op.
- Kimino (sparkling juices)
- Mother in Law’s (gochujang paste and sauce)
- Dang (sticky rice chips)
- Red Boat Fish Sauce
- Maya Kaimal (Indian pantry staples)
AAPI Heritage Month Events
- 5/13: Book Project: Mental Health & Immigration in the AAPI Community Film Screening and Discussion from UC Davis
- 5/17: Korean Language and Culture Class from the Yolo County Library
- 5/19: CULINASIA: The Future of Asian Food in America Lecture from the Asian Art Museum
- 5/19: ‘A Gift to Be Simple’: Japanese American Influence in Appalachian Spring Lecture from the American Musicological Society
- 5/20: Youth in Action: Ecological Knowledge in Pacific Coastal Communities Panel Discussion from the National Museum of the American Indian
- 5/26: Health & Well-Being of Filipin-x American Nurses During COVID-19: Implications for Implementing Support Discussion from UC Davis
- The California Museum is hosting free virtual programs for all ages throughout the month of May
Places To Go
- Visit Historical Locke Town, the only town in the United States built exclusively by Chinese Americans for Chinese Americans
- Explore the East Asian Collection at the Arboretum/UC Davis Public Garden
- Visit the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco or explore their Museum From Home programs
- Stop by The Viet Museum in San Jose