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HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!! And some updates!

Hi All! This week there won't be any APASA events considering it's Thanksgiving break, so enjoy the time off with your friends and family! But if you are around campus tonight, and are looking for plans, the 19th Annual USC KASA's Freshman DanceOff will be going on TONIGHT at 7 PM at  Club 333! Click on the picture for FB event details!

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Tickets will be $20 presale and $25 at the door. To buy tickets at the door, please text RSVP at 2132812395.

Our two APASA interns Stefanie and Thanya will be competing as a part of the USC team. So if you have no plans this Wednesday night then head out and cheer on SC! There will also be clubbing after.

Reminder that the APASA Assembly will be having a potluck next Monday, Nov. 30th so get EXCITED for yummy food after you've had your stuffing this week! Don't forget to bring your share!

Happy break/Thanksgiving to all!

 

Natalie Zhang

APASA Historian

 

Member Org Event Spotlight: Troy Phi's Friendship Games

Below is a spotlight on an event one of our member orgs, USC Troy Philippines, attended. Heidi Carreon, USC Troy Philippines Co-APASA Representative, writes about the Friendship Games event. Before I begin about Friendship Games, you should probably check out what the President of USC Troy Philippines has to say about it:

 

[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F86nxsuqNvQ&feature=youtu.be[/embed]

 

Saturday mornings are usually when college students try to catch up on sleep, but Troy Phi managed to get to the Cal State Fullerton by 7 a.m. We might have looked odd as makeshift ninjas clad in different shades of black and strips of red and gold cloth, but we were in good company. As we made our way to the center of CSUF, we walked past a group of people dressed like mimes, another dressed like Starbucks baristas and another dressed in tie-die shirts singing, "Happy Birthday."

And so we entered the 30th Annual Friendship Games.

Friendship Games is a day-long competition of picnic games hosted by CSUF's Filipino organization, PASA Kaibigan. It is the largest gathering of Filipino students run by Filipino students in the country, and this year 37 collegiate Filipino organizations hailing from California, Nevada, Arizona and even Oregon attended.

People who played picnic games before (*cough* APASA Tournament of Champions *cough*) would be surprised at the rules and regulations for the different heats, but competition is part of the culture. Some schools begin training in the summer so they can win the honor of taking home an 8 foot tall trophy.

But beyond actual competition, Friendship Games has a creed called "SPUF," which stands for "Spirit, Pride, Unity and Friendship." As one of the CSUF coordinators told me, it's the idea of having spirit and pride in one's school and in one's identity (Filipino or otherwise) and to share that spirit with other organizations. In doing so, lines of communication (unity and friendship, if you will) open between different schools.

This is also where the weird costumes come into play, and since SPUF-ing can be tricky to explain….just watch the video below haha:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfzBQEgW7Lk

Considering that two years ago Troy Phi didn't know the rules for the games, we did remarkably well. We placed in three heats: Alpine Ski (3rd Place), Conveyor Belt (2nd Place) and Thread the Needle (a very debated 2nd Place). For that we have to thank our coordinators Joel Gutierrez (External Vice President) and Joseph Lacson (Social Chair) as well as Anthony Militante (President) for months of planning practices, costumes and chants.

I interviewed people from other schools for an article, and it was obvious from the first person I interviewed that Friendship Games is extremely special to collegiate Fil-Ams. I mean, some schools spend thousands of dollars to make the trip to Fullerton.

Even though Filipinos compose the second-largest immigrant population in the U.S., most communities are concentrated in the West Coast. Many of Troy Phi's members came from cities where there were few Filipinos, and so seeing hundreds of people who have shared heritage and similar experiences was a new--and welcome--experience.

But the most touching part of Friendship Games was seeing other people find old friends, classmates and family members. Troy Phi has strong connections with students from other Southern California schools via our umbrella organization SCPASA (it's like APASA for SoCal Filipino groups), and it was great to see some people we haven't seen in a while. But I also saw people look for their friends from UC Santa Barbara, from schools like San Francisco State. Throughout the day I saw friends reconnect with a scream of joy and hugs because Friendship Games allowed them to be in the same space.

The importance of Friendship Games was underlined by the fact that October is Filipino American Heritage Month and it occurred the day before Larry Itilong Day was observed in California for the first time.

"Just the visibility and awareness of the unification of collegiate Filipinos is really important to show that we are actively bridging together and communicating with each other for the purpose of uniting ourselves," Zach Chaco, SCPASA chair and former Troy Phi president told me for my article, "We may not be doing it for specific [social] issues, but just the fact those bridges of communication are open is a great step ahead."

But Friendship Games, even though it's the largest gathering of Filipino organizations, welcomes non-Filipinos to participate with their schools. Outside the many motifs of the Philippines flag and the hundreds of Fil-Am students, Friendship Games isn't in-your-face Filipino, so that people who are not of Filipino descent are not only welcomed but also encouraged to feel like they're with family.

Any person in APASA knows what I mean when I say that an org feels like a family, and it seemed especially true for Troy Phi at Friendship Games. As we cheered, competed and hung out with one another, we bonded over the experience of representing ourselves and our school to other groups.

We have an old saying in Troy Phi, "for the love," that's actually shortened from "for the love of Troy Phi."

The saying reiterates that everything we do in Troy Phi, we do to help one another grow, discover themselves, and celebrate not only Filipino culture but also other cultures. And we do it because we are a family of friends whom we can call in an emergency or when we want to just grab lunch. Friendship Games made us closer, and thus made us stronger as an organization.

So thank you once again to our awesome Eboard, particularly Joel, Joseph and Anthony. Thank you to Hallie Jose for choreographing our performance for the opening ceremony. Thank you to the many members who came out to Friendship Games and kept fighting on through the heat and exhaustion to SPUF. Without all of you, Troy Phi wouldn't have had such a successful Friendship Games in recent history.

And thank you APASA, for allowing me to share one of the most important events in the Filipino American collegiate community and the highlight of Troy Phi's fall semester.

For the love,

Heidi Carreon

USC Troy Philippines Co-APASA Representative

 

Community Spotlight: Tuesday Night Project!

Hello! My name is Jun Kim, and I am currently an intern under Amy Chau, the External Community Chair, for APASA! Our second community spotlight, for the month of October, is the Tuesday Night Project.

Tuesday Night Project (TNP) is a fully volunteer-based organization that provides opportunities for people to showcase their talents and provide a friendly, open space to build relationships. TNP hosts Tuesday Night Café (TNC) at the Aratani Courtyard (Union Center for the Arts) in Little Tokyo. TNC was first started to bring people into Little Tokyo when the town was not as lively as it is today. However, TNP and TNC have developed into a family-like community, welcoming people from all different backgrounds.

Although TNP is rooted by the Asian-American community, the space is not limited for only Asian-Americans. Tuesday Night Cafe, the longest running Asian American open mic space, is hosted in the heart of Little Tokyo every first and third Tuesdays in the months of April to October. TNC has a line-up of artists that share, but also have three open mic spaces per event. This helps foster new artists and gives them an opportunity to share their stories and talents.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KpsxZZblVi4

Due to TNP being completely volunteer-based, TNC needs volunteers to help set-up the stage and help clean up after the event. I volunteered for both the performances in October, and while the physical work was pretty exhausting, it was all worth it after relaxing and listening to the people's performances. If you are interested in volunteering for TNC next year, check out the website!

Tuesday Night Café can be found at Aratani Courtyard/Union Center for the Arts, 120 Judge John Aiso St., Los Angeles, CA 90012.

Thanks for reading!

Jun Kim

Community Spotlight: Asian Americans Advancing Justice Event

Hi everyone! My name is Amy Chau, and I’m APASA’s External Community Chair for the 2015-2016 school year. This year, we're introducing a new initiative to encourage student involvement in community organizations by spotlighting a new community organization each month.

As part of the spotlight, we invite representatives from the community organization to come to one of our weekly APASA Assembly meetings and provide representatives from our 21 member organizations with an overview of their mission and share what their organization does for the community. In addition, we provide members of APASA Member Organizations with an opportunity to learn more about these community organizations by sending a delegation of volunteers to help out at an upcoming community organization event.

 

 

Our first organization spotlight of the year for the month of September is Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Los Angeles.

Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Los Angeles (Advancing Justice - LA) is the nation’s largest legal and civil rights organization for Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders (NHPI). Founded in 1983 as the Asian Pacific American Legal Center, Advancing Justice - LA serves more than 15,000 individuals and organizations every year. Through direct services, impact litigation, policy advocacy, leadership development, and capacity building, Advancing Justice - LA focuses on the most vulnerable members of Asian American and NHPI communities while also building a strong voice for civil rights and social justice.

Advancing Justice - LA put together a great video that provides a thorough overview of what the organization strives for, which you can find here!

 

The Event: Monthly Citizenship Clinic

This month, Advancing Justice - LA is looking for volunteers for their monthly Citizenship Clinic.

Citizenship Clinic volunteers help individuals complete the Application for Naturalization (Form N-400), assess eligibility for various waivers, and provide in-language resources on the naturalization process. Advancing Justice will provide training in advance, and supervision. General volunteers will assist clients with preparation of the applications, while attorney volunteers will assist with legal review as the applications are completed.

 

When: Tuesday, September 29, 4:30-8:30pm (departure from USC 4pm)

Where: Monterey Park Public Library, 318 S. Ramona Ave., Monterey Park, CA 91754

Language Needs: Asian languages (primarily Mandarin and Cantonese) and Spanish.

 

Community Points: Orgs will be awarded 12 points/volunteer for this event + 4.5 points/volunteer for training. (*Must attend clinic to earn points from training)

Required Training: Please note that you must be trained prior to volunteering at an upcoming citizenship workshop. Please contact Pro Bono Director Christina Yang, Esq. (probono@advancingjustice-la.org) to discuss alternate arrangements if you missed the USC training session.

Volunteer Sign-Up Procedures: Please also remember to RSVP with Advancing Justice at http://bit.ly/1ET0lMk. To join the APASA delegation and earn points for your organization, fill out the Google form (http://bit.ly/1JT3VW4).

Feel free to check the Facebook event page (http://on.fb.me/1ENzuBG) or email me at uscapasa.externalcomm@gmail.com for more information!

 

How to Get Involved

There are several ways you can get into contact with Advancing Justice - LA!

For volunteer opportunities, contact Pro Bono Director Christina Yang, Esq. (probono@advancingjustice-la.org).

Facebook: AdvancingJusticeLA

Website: http://www.advancingjustice-la.org/

Best,

Amy