We are disheartened, shocked and disappointed at the Supreme Court’s recent ruling to overturn Roe v. Wade. This decision strips autonomy from millions of women across the country, with the most significant impact affecting marginalized groups - particularly those in lower-income communities, racial and ethnic minorities and individuals who are physically and neurologically diverse. While it is impossible to know the full effect this ruling will have on our country and the world, we will not back down until we live in a society where human beings have body autonomy. In the coming weeks and months, we will work with and lend support to organizations who are at the forefront of human rights initiatives. Our hope is to disseminate information, education and resources to those who are interested in joining the rise.
Photo: Baskets of Good, North Texas
The spirit of Thanksgiving is all about showing gratitude for your good fortune and giving to those who are less fortunate. Express your thanks this holiday season by giving back to others by volunteering, donating, or simply spreading kindness.
Here are just a few organizations from our Dallas and Los Angeles communities who will be working to make sure everyone can enjoy a holiday meal. Click on the links below to learn more or to donate to these organizations.
Baskets For Food
North Texas Food Bank
Minnies Food Pantry
LA Food Bank
Project Angel Food
Los Angeles Mission
YMCA of Metropolitan Los Angeles
Santa Monica College Foundation
We wanted to share a wonderful Blog post from our partners at NEXT for AUTISM and their Next Gen Connect program to promote a more inclusive workplace.
Autism employment statistics continue to be of concern. Many autistic adults are underemployed or have difficulty securing employment. Mentorship is one method to promote employment. A tried-and-true practice of building a professional community and career advancement, mentorship’s main premise is that a mentee learns from a mentor who has more knowledge, skills, and abilities, and all the learning is for the mentee – but is this really true? Just because someone has more years on the earth or a few more layers on their resume can the relationship be such that only one member of the pair can learn from the other? What if each member of the pair entered the relationship with the shared expectation that they would learn from each other? With a little finesse the power dynamic can shift from mentor to mentee to offering a co-mentoring experience where both members benefit. Co-mentoring is defined as an intense mutual mentoring relationship that is common among peers but transcends age, rank, and organizational level boundaries.
With generous support from the Bhatia Family Foundation and in collaboration with NEXT Gen Board, NEXT for AUTISM has embarked in a co-mentoring initiative – NEXT Gen Connect. This program has been established for young professionals who may or may not be autistic and aspiring young autistic professionals. These peers connect with a shared goal of promoting a more inclusive workplace. Established professionals learn about neuroinclusivity while aspiring autistic professionals build their network and develop skills and connections to secure employment. Our goal is to ensure a workplace that truly values autistic employees, and that every autistic adult who wants to work can secure meaningful employment.
Here’s what one of the co-mentors shared after their first meeting in our pilot launch of NEXT Gen Connect:
I met with my co-mentor today. It was so nice getting to know him and learning more about him. The materials were excellent – I thought they structured the meeting well and promoted thoughtful discussion. We chose a theme for our next meeting that I think complements both the prepared materials and his goals. This is so much fun!” – Alexa West, NEXT Gen Board Member
NEXT for AUTISM believes that we can all learn from each other. NEXT Gen Connect is a model of inclusivity, ensuring each co-mentor, both, teaches and learns. This inclusive model is what we want in the workplace, increasing the understanding that everyone has something to offer. To be honest, this desire for inclusivity extends beyond the workplace, it is what NEXT for AUTISM wants for society, an understanding and belief that diversity is a strength.
For more about Next For Autism please visit: https://www.nextforautism.org/
India is facing a major humanitarian crisis with another wave of COVID-19, crossing the 19 million case mark, and is getting nearly 400,000+ cases a day. The country's healthcare system is close to collapse. Hospitals are filled, unable to care for any new patients. In addition, there are oxygen supply and ventilator shortages. People are dying and need international help. We are looking at ways that we can assist, but in the meantime, we encourage those looking to help to donate to www.pathfinder.org or www.unicefusa.org who are working on the ground
to provide critical life-saving supplies.
We are in this together!
We wanted to share a message below from NAPAWF in response to the act of violence that took place this week in Georgia. We stand in solidarity with our Asian and Asian American neighbors. Please consider supporting organizations supporting Asian American communities where you live, as well as local, Asian-owned businesses that may need support more than ever now.
We are appalled, devastated, and angry at the violence in Georgia that has taken eight lives, six of whom were Asian American women. We must call this moment what it truly is: white supremacy, anti-Asian racism, sexism, and sexual violence against Asian American women.
Asian American women have consistently reported 2-3 times more incidents of harassment and violence than men. The coronavirus has been weaponized against us to enable even more racialized misogyny but we continue to courageously speak up so our stories are heard and demand that our leaders address racism and violence against us head on.
We need a response to these escalating incidents of harassment and violence that centers Asian American women and elders. Intentional centering of women and elders must result in true aid, community support, government support, and an emphasis on our lived experiences, so that relief flows to those who need it most. We do not need more law enforcement – time and time again, more law enforcement did not lead to protection and safety. It instead leads to more violence aimed at and control of Black and brown communities, including our own community members.
We are asking elected officials for a response that:
Niraj Bhatia at Children's Hunger Fund, Dallas
All of us can reflect on 2020 and develop new goals to continue making progress in the new year. Our foundation has started 2021 by addressing others' immediate needs, especially those suffering from food insecurity. This month, we began by donating to various food pantries and organizations on the front lines and serving communities and families affected by the loss of jobs and income during this year-long pandemic. Our January gifts included:
Los Angeles Regional Food Bank
United Way Greater Los Angeles
Meals on Wheels - Metroport Chapter (Dallas)
Meals on Wheels - Los Angeles (St. Vincents)
Children's Hunger Fund (Dallas)
As we plan our Foundation’s giving, we often look to those that have paved the way. We have been reminded of anthropologist Margaret Mead’s quotes, “I measure success in terms of the contributions an individual makes to her fellow human beings.” and “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” Our mission remains the same, to serve those around us.
As a minority, immigrant family, we are deeply saddened by all the events that have transpired throughout this country. Not only the police brutality we have seen recently, but the disproportionate access to care minorities and underprivileged communities have endured through Covid-19. Unfortunately, these issues are not new. However, we FIRMLY believe that individuals and families - through social activism and charity – can and will make a difference. Our foundation is currently evaluating charities to support. If anyone has charities dedicated to ending discrimination and social justice, please contact our Foundation Manager Mandi at firstname.lastname@example.org