| Program: || Coalition for Asian Pacific American Youth, Boston, MA |
| Contact(s): || Trinh Nguyen, Coordinator: (617) 287-5658 |
| Purpose: || To establish and maintain a forum for free dialogue, abolish stereotypes about Asian Pacific Americans and improve race relations |
The Coalition for Asian Pacific American Youth (CAPAY) was initiated in May 1994 by the Institute for Asian American Studies, as a result of challenges Asian Pacific American youth faced due to discrimination in their high schools and communities. These youth wanted a forum to declare their voices, institute a culturally relevant curriculum in their high schools and create a multi-ethnic and multiracial coalition for advocacy. CAPAY is a youth-led organization with projects and activities designed by Asian Pacific American youth for their Asian Pacific American peers statewide.
CAPAY's projects encompass a "theory-to-practice" model, a participatory approach that turns education and theory into practice. The coalition's year-round initiatives include collaborations and coalition building with other Asian Pacific American agencies and leadership development for youth that train them to run organizations, develop program planning skills and raise funds. CAPAY also works through the Asian Pacific American Heritage Month Education Project, which assists 400 Asian Pacific American youth, high school administrators, teachers and community advocates in coordinating and implementing heritage month education projects in the high schools. The heritage month education project kicks off with the Annual Leadership Symposium, which provides resources and technical assistance to high school students, enabling them to educate others on Asian Pacific American history and their contributions to America. Peer support and networking through CAPAY provides strong support for Asian Pacific American youth in high schools, focusing on their educational, social and cultural development. CAPAY establishes visibility in the community through the Community YouthLearn AmeriCorps program, which provides education/mentor/tutor services to younger Asian Pacific American students. An alumni network supports former CAPAY members who continue their activism in colleges and at work.
Outcomes and Significant Accomplishments
CAPAY works with 21 organizations through its numerous projects, including the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugees Advocacy Coalition, the Asian American Resource Workshop and the Massachusetts Asian American Educators Association. CAPAY maintains a general membership of 350 people who participate in the heritage month education project and the leadership symposium. Roughly 200 young students are tutored through the AmeriCorps Program, and some 700 people attend the heritage month education project. The Coalition for Asian Pacific American Youth is expanding to the Greater Boston area, Worcester, Lynn and Lowell.