Grassroots APIs Rising

Grassroots APIs Rising is a new formation of grassroots AAPIs organizations to exchange and share best practices in organizing, civic engagement, multi-racial coalition building, youth and queer justice work, organizational development, and fundraising. The past two decades, grassroots organizations have brought new organizers and leaders into the movement, and have won effective organizing and electoral campaigns. As the fastest growing demographic in the US, AAPIs need to develop a unified strategy around the role of AAPIs in the broader social and economic justice movement on a national level.

Last summer, over 30 grassroots AAPI organizations and 120 organizers convened in New Orleans, Louisiana to explore the role of AAPIs within the current moment, how we organize and build power among AAPI communities, and how we can work in solidarity with other communities for social change. The convening engaged with local organizing groups and supported the growth of AAPI grassroots organizing and activism in the South. Grassroots APIs Rising plans to hold its next gathering in 2015.

The Coordinating Committee includes: Asian Pacific Environmental Network (APEN) – Oakland, CA, AYPAL: Building API Community Power – Oakland, CA, CAAAV: Organizing Asian Communities – New York, NY, Chinese Progressive Association (CPA) – San Francisco, CA, Providence Youth Student Movement (PrYSM) – Providence, MA, VAYLA – New Orleans, Louisiana. CPA, through Seeding Change, is currently providing coordinating support for the initiative.

Wei (on right) speaks at a panel about undocumented immigrants in Asian American communities. Wei is currently participating in the API Coaching Circle in the Bay Area.

Coaching Circle

Asian Pacific Islander Coaching Circle for Organizers

Union and community organizers bring passion, commitment and hard work to building the power of workers and community members to advocate for social justice. Young organizers, in particular, have always been an essential part of our social movements with their inspiring, creative energy and bold vision for our communities!

The API Coaching Circle for Organizers is designed to support young API community and labor organizers to thrive in their work for social and economic justice, to organize for the long haul, and to transform our communities and society towards justice, love, and equity!

Through the Coaching Circle, API organizers join a community of peers facilitated by a professional coach to:

  • Engage in inquiry about what is important to themselves and their lives
  • Celebrate their strengths and contributions
  • Acknowledge challenges of organizing for systemic change and honor what they are learning
  • Organize, live, and play with more sustainability and joy
  • Learn how to lead effectively

The API Coaching Circle for Organizers is a project of Seeding Change to support the development and leadership of young API organizers.

Learn more about coaching

Program Experience

Coaching is an empowering partnership rather than a “service” model. For people who are open to exploring their assumptions, taking an honest look at what holds them back, and choosing to be powerful even in the face of challenge, coaching will deliver extraordinary benefits to them.

Through the Coaching Circle, organizers will

  • Increase skillfulness in communication.
  • Practice tools to manage stress.
  • Explore frameworks to learn from change.

The Coach: Meet Stacy Kono

StacyKono coaches emerging community organizers to thrive in their work for the long haul. She organized immigrant women and youth at Asian Immigrant Women Advocates for ten years – on their national Garment Workers Justice Campaign and with their Youth Build Immigrant Power Project. She now works at Rockwood Leadership Institute, a national training organization for progressive leaders.

To learn more about the Coaching Circle, contact us at

Alex Tom and Makani Themba-Nixon at the DC Launch of Seeding Change

Introducing Seeding Change

Today, the Chinese Progressive Association is happy to launch of a new project: Seeding Change – A Center for Asian American Movement Building. Rooted in CPA’s 42 years of history of building grassroots movements from the ground up, Seeding Change grew from CPA’s 2013 strategic planning process.

Over the last 10 years, we have deepened our tenant and worker organizing, formed a new youth program, and built strong strategic alliances on a local level. AAPIs are now the fastest growing population in the county. In a time of economic and ecological crisis, the task before us is to advance our movement building work forging stronger connections between local and national work.

Seeding Change grows a national Asian American movement to promote a just, sustainable, and democratic society. Our key strategies include building a national pipeline for the next generation of AAPI organizers; creating an infrastructure for AAPI grassroots organizing; and experimenting with building power and scale for our movements toward a vibrant social and economic justice movement.

As a part of Seeding Change, this summer, we are thrilled to launch the National Fellowship Program for Asian American Organizing and Civic Engagement, which is based on CPA’s Eva Lowe Fellowship. In its pilot year, the national fellowship program will train 17 fellows at 7 sites in 7 cities. The fellowship program runs 10 weeks, with all fellows coming together for a week-long training and orientation June 16-June 20 in the Bay Area.

If you are in the Bay Area, join us at the Bay Area launch of Seeding Change and our annual fellowship reception on Thursday, June 19th.

Event Information:

Fellowship Reception & Bay Area Launch of Seeding Change
Thursday, June 19th | 6 pm to 8:30 pm
Chinese Culture Center
750 Kearny Street, 3rd Floor
San Francisco Chinatown

Meet the fellows

How can you support? As a part of our work to launch Seeding Change, our grassroots fundraising goal is to raise $100,000 by the end of 2014. We hope you can help us achieve this goal to launch this exciting new project.

Thank you for your continued support as we launch this new project.