Emerald Virtual Assistance is proud to be an indigenously-owned VA firm who knows well the power of representation. It matters. Representation inspires men, women, and especially children when someone who looks like them is successful, respected, and doing fantastic and marvelous things. That’s why EVA celebrates May as Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. Let’s take a look at this month’s history.
How It Began
In 1978, President Jimmy Carter signed a week of recognition for the AAPI community into law. However, President George H. W. Bush first set aside the entire month of May for the AAPI in 1992. In 2009, President Obama renamed May as “Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month,” and the rest, as they say, is history. This month is meant to celebrate the heritage of Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, as well as Native Hawaiians—ethnic groups that aren’t often given much representation in today’s culture. This recognition is meant to place these people groups and their valuable contributions to our nation front and center, by teaching one and all how they’ve enriched the history of America.
This includes recognizing artists, veterans, teachers, business owners, and many more for the valuable mark they’ve placed upon our nation. The website asianpacificheritage.gov has a wealth of information about various exhibits and events held around the country to honor Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.
How to Celebrate
How can you celebrate? Start by educating yourself and those you love by watching documentaries about these cultures or by nose diving into research about how these cultures have shaped our own. Museums are also a must, whether they are dedicated to showcasing AAPI history or featuring exhibits by artists from this heritage.
Another way to celebrate AAPI Heritage Month is to support businesses that are locally owned within this community. Purchasing books written by AAPI authors is also a wonderful way to learn more. Following AAPI podcasts or other social media accounts will help to inform you about the community’s needs, struggles, and overall history.
Education is key to stopping hate. The unfortunate reality is many within this community have faced hate crimes in their local neighborhoods and beyond. By being open to certain media, contributions, and art, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, and Native Hawaiians will become less unknown and more understood. We must become more inclusive if we’re to live in peace with one another. It all starts with intentionality.
It Means So Much
Supporting these communities means so much to those without recognition or representation. Be an advocate for AAPI history to be taught in our schools, step up against discrimination in the workplace, or mention Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month on your website, social media, or blog.
A little goes a long way. If we take the time to be intentional and learn about each other, our history, and our contributions to society, then perhaps we can stop the hate against our fellow man along the way.
At Emerald Virtual Assistance, our team of experienced VA’s are proud to celebrate ethnic diversity. Schedule a consultation today to learn how your VA will advocate for our clients’ equality.