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Student Engagement and Education for Development and Success (SEEDS) 2021

The Vietnamese American Roundtable is excited to announce the opening of registration for our fourth annual Student Engagement and Education for Development and Success (SEEDS) Summer Youth Program for 2021.

2021 marks the fourth year of our SEEDS Summer Program that aims to train and grow future community leaders to address the most urgent social issues across our local, regional, and national communities while learning about Vietnamese migration history, culture, and identity.

Youth ages 14-24, from high school to college, will engage in curated community spaces, workshops, and hands-on planning sessions to identify significant issues that are resonant with their own experiences, to learn about the contexts that produced and maintained these issues, and to configure sustainable solutions to these issues, such as racial subjugation, discrimination, and anti-AAPI hate and violence.

The SEEDS Summer Youth Program aims to provide opportunities for youth to serve as representatives and voices for their communities. Our program curriculum this year, inspired by Thi Bui’s The Best We Could Do and the fight against anti-Asian xenophobia, will expose young leaders to real world civics, personal and professional development, leadership capacity-building, and project management. SEEDS this year will also feature an array of local and national community organizers, activists, and advocates who will speak to their work and experience towards social and racial justice.

We encourage you to share this year’s program application to any students who you feel may  benefit from our programming and curriculum. The link to register can be found here at https://bit.ly/VARSEEDS2021.

Registration is open to all students attending high school or university interested in Vietnamese and Southeast Asian American history, community organizing, and culture. Registrations are encouraged to be submitted Sunday, June 13th; however, students are welcome to participate in the program on a rolling basis and via drop-ins. 

Below is a tentative program schedule; sessions are anticipated to be held on Saturday mornings at varying times in-person, pursuant to CDC guidelines. A final program agenda with locations and waiver forms will be sent to all registered participants by Tuesday, June 15th. Following each session, program participants will also be collaborating on a culminating project that directly addresses an issue that they seek to advocate for that will be presented at a public showcase at the end of the summer on August 7th, 2021, open to family, friends, and the community.

Food and educational materials will be provided at no cost to all registered students for all in-person sessions. Participants who attend a majority of program sessions will also be eligible for scholarships from our sponsors.

For any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at seeds@varoundtable.org. We look forward to continuing to grow and support the future leaders of our community!

2021 PROGRAM OVERVIEW**:

1. Saturday, June 19th, 10am-2pm: SEEDS Welcome & Orientation, Food History and Food Sustainability Workshop

Location: Viet-American Community Center (VACC) Lawn, 2072 Lucretia Ave, 95122

Goals: Meet the cohort and program leads, explore issues of food security and accessibility during COVID-19

2. Saturday, June 26th, 10am-1pm: Refugee Resettlement & History

Location: TBA

Goals: Hear from speakers about the history of Southeast Asian resettlement from social and economic perspectives and participate in a scavenger hunt of San Jose’s Little Saigon to trace these histories.

3. Saturday, July 10th, 10am-1pm: SEA Community: Allyship and Advocacy with CA Healthy Nail Salon Collaborative 

Location: TBA

Goals: Engage in a fireside conversation with panelists from partner Southeast Asian American organizations to identify issues that disparately impact communities of color, as well as how to practice transformative allyship and advocacy. 

4. Saturday, July 17th, 10am-1pm: The Art of Storytelling

Location: TBA

Goals: Explore Vietnamese American history, community, and identity through storytelling and recording family histories. Create a time capsule to capture our stories as we reflect upon and visualize COVID-19 related issues, impacts, and solutions to and for the local community

5. Saturday, July 24th, 10am-1pm: 

Cross-Cultural Learning | Environmental Justice and Climate Change

Location: TBA

Goals: Learn about the migratory trajectories of Southeast Asian Americans and consider the resiliency of sustainable cultural practices. 

6. Saturday, July 31st, 10am-1pm: Professional Development and Financial Literacy Workshop

Location: TBA

Goals: Learn from Vietnamese American professionals about how to present and package yourself in the workplace and shape how you envision your financial future. 

7. Saturday, August 7th, 10am-2pm: SEEDS Summer Showcase

Location: TBA

Goals: Each SEEDS participant will be invited to highlight their culminating project that centers on an issue in their local community. This event will be open to the public, inclusive of the friends and family of the SEEDS students.

**All session topics and locations are tentative and to be announced; a final program will be sent to all registered participants by Tuesday, June 15th.

**VAR will implement all appropriate measures to follow Santa Clara County Social Distancing Protocol to prevent the spread of COVID-19. All program dates may be held online via Zoom if necessary.

** Students are encouraged, but not required, to attend all sessions, which may be held either in-person or online via Zoom

46th Anniversary of the Fall of Saigon – Virtual Black April Commemoration

April 30, 1975 marks the Fall of Saigon, an event that sparked the mass exodus of Vietnamese refugees from Vietnam and led to the creation of Vietnamese communities around the world. Black April is our flagship event to commemorate this historic moment and honor the sacrifices of those who fled a war-torn nation in search of security, opportunity, and freedom.

Please join us for our annual commemoration, which will be held virtually at 6pm on April 30, 2021. Our program will be streamed from our Facebook page. Please visit our event page for more information.

We have received many messages of support from our local elected officials, and we are grateful for the continued support of our policy makers. We share them here in advance of our program, and to show our appreciation for the uplifting messages of our allies.

Santa Clara County Supervisor Otto Lee
Santa Clara County Supervisor Cindy Chavez
San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo
California Assemblymember Ash Kalra
San Jose Councilmember Sylvia Arenas
California Senator Dave Cortese

Small Business Assistance Survey

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Executive Director Job Announcement

The Vietnamese American Roundtable (VAR) is seeking a qualified applicant to serve as our first Executive Director to continue providing crucial programs for our community and to build a foundation for VAR’s growth. The Executive Director will be the key management leader of VAR and will be responsible for overseeing the administration, programs, staffing, and execution of the strategic plan of the organization.

VAR began with a simple vision – to provide the platform upon which our community could work together. Today, VAR has grown with flagship programming that attracts all segments of our community to honor our culture and history as well as to advocate for the needs of our people. A few of our annual programs include our Black April Commemoration, which has been going on for seven years, and our annual SEEDS Youth Program, which is entering its fourth year.

Our work has continued and grown during COVID-19. This pandemic has shown that there is still a big need to serve our community, which has been disproportionately impacted by this crisis. As COVID-19 swept our community, our team has worked hard to provide bilingual resource guides, weekly live streams, educational materials, video programming, continued to boost morale with activity guides for families, and provided support to the community where we can.

VAR experienced much success using its current resources and applying leading practices in operational management and marketing, and learned from businesses and organizations which its members belong to. The work VAR has been able to provide has been through our volunteer Board members, two part-time program managers and one part-time administrative staff member. We have a small but mighty team. However, we have reached the point we must bring on an Executive Director to lead our organization and to continue our growth and work and to create a lasting, sustainable foundation.

This is where we need your help. Please see the attached Job Description and share this with your network. If you have the passion and dedication to serve the Vietnamese community while working with an engaged and energized Board of Directors, please consider submitting an application!

Link to the job description