Asian Pacific Environmental Network/AYPAL:Building API Community Power

Asian Pacific Environmental Network/AYPAL:Building API Community Power

AYPAL is a youth organizing and leadership development organization working with API youth to cultivate youth power, promote social justice, empower the community, and create leaders to drive positive social change in Oakland. Utilizing ethnic studies curriculum, arts activism, base building and other movement building strategies, we actively engage youth

Asian Pacific Environmental Network/AYPAL:Building API Community Power

AYPAL is a youth organizing and leadership development organization working with API youth to cultivate youth power, promote social justice, empower the community, and create leaders to drive positive social change in Oakland. Utilizing ethnic studies curriculum, arts activism, base building and other movement building strategies, we actively engage youth leaders to develop a sense of self, rootedness in their communities and culture, and their ethnic histories to to actively engage with their peers, families, and decision makers to lift up the needs of the API community.

About the Organization:

AYPAL is a youth organizing and leadership development organization working with API youth to cultivate youth power, promote social justice, empower the community, and create leaders to drive positive social change in Oakland. Utilizing ethnic studies curriculum, arts activism, base building and other movement building strategies, we actively engage youth leaders to develop a sense of self, rootedness in their communities and culture, and their ethnic histories to to actively engage with their peers, families, and decision makers to lift up the needs of the API community.

organizational budget

$100,000 - $500,000

existence for

21-25 YEARS

The Issue:

Through the pandemic our youth leaders have faced a host of challenges, from being socially disconnected, lack of emotional and mental health support, and direct and indirect trauma from the rise in Anti Asian Violence. In 2020 there were 3800 reported cases of anti Asian violence a 150% increase from previous years, some incidents being hyper visible and hyper local happening in the neighborhoods where their families live, work, and utilize in Chinatown and other API pockets in Oakland. Despite the false narrative of APIs being the model minority, API youth need support in a number of areas which include academic, social emotional, mental health, and resource access needs, resources need to be directed to API serving organizations in order to cultivate solidarity, community power, and leadership amongst community members, especially the youth, who have the agency and creativity to dream of community centered solutions.

The Solution:

Our solutions are grounded in developing youth leaders to empower their families and communities to drive forward initiatives that lift up not only the API community but all communities of color in Oakland. Youth leaders are supported academically, socially, emotionally, and empowered to advocate for changes that support our communities to thrive. We train youth leaders on analyzing systems such as white supremacy, patriarchy, and imperialism to understand root causes to issues that impact our community to develop campaigns and initiatives that center impacted communities that work towards our collective liberation. From youths trainings, they are involved in change making through engaging with elected officials and decision makers, community members, and their peers, to build community and influence policy and direct community action for positive change.

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