Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Yahoo! Employee Foundation (YEF) awarded a sizable grant to RAMS

We are extremely pleased to announce a $32,430 generous grant award from the Yahoo! Employee Foundation (YEF), a donor-advised fund of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, to RAMS.

The YEF funding will support the high school-based trauma/grief & loss counseling and outreach services RAMS provides through the Wellness Centers. Over the course of the past 10 years of providing bilingual & bicultural services at the high school-based Wellness Centers, RAMS has identified gaps in service delivery for interventions for trauma/grief & loss. Community linkages have proven challenging due to the severe lack of resources for students & families, especially for those living in poverty. In the 2010-2011 school year, about 200 students receiving services through RAMS Wellness Centers’ Behavioral Health Counselors reported being affected by community violence and 450 youth reported grief & loss as one of their main issues. As issues of community violence occur abruptly, having enhanced trauma/grief & loss counseling services greatly strengthen the capacity of schools and the community to intervene. By intervening early and helping students identify feelings and learn strategies to manage strong emotions, we can enable them to function academically and socially in their lives. Furthermore, by providing immediate intervention, we aim to prevent or lessen the biological responses to trauma that often create academic barriers that snowball to close off further education and/or vocational opportunities. In the long term, students are taught coping and de-escalation skills to ameliorate the effects of trauma/grief & loss. Through community building and teaching positive coping skills, we aim to reduce at-risk behaviors including isolation, substance use/abuse, violence and retaliation while increasing retention in school and promoting academic success.

With the YEF funding, there will be enhanced capacity and resources to meet these growing needs of adolescents who are impacted by trauma, grief, and loss issues. Speaking about this grant, Kristin Chun, LMFT, RAMS Director of Behavioral Health Services at Wellness Centers said, “We are truly honored to have the inspiring support of YEF. In a time when economic support for community services is compromised, it’s invaluable to have acknowledgement from the private sector that supporting students to succeed emotionally and academically in schools is a priority. “

Founded in 1999, YEF, one of Yahoo! Inc.’s social responsibility programs is a unique grassroots philanthropic organization that brings together the talents, time, and financial resources of Yahoo! employees to serve the needs of communities around the globe. YEF is a unique foundation that is entirely employee driven and all the money is donated by employees as well as all the activities are run by a volunteer committee of Yahoo! employees.

We would like to express our sincere thanks to RAMS Board of Director member and Yahoo! employee Ms. Pueng Vongs for championing this grant.

Monday, November 14, 2011

API Circle Holiday Celebration!

Once again, RAMS is very pleased to be a community supporter of the exciting & fun API Circle event. The API Circle is an alliance of San Francisco Bay Area Asian & Pacific Islander American leaders and organizations with the mission to create meaningful relationships and collaborative efforts that are cross-generational, ideologically neutral and diversely representative.

The first API Circle’s project was the Asian Pacific American Closing Night Celebration which was held at Carnelian by the Bay in San Francisco on Tuesday, May 31st, 2011 in conjunction with over 30 community partner sponsors, generous food donors, and over 50 co-hosts, supporters, and volunteers as well as over 600 guests in attendance. As a follow-up to the last very successful event, the next project is an end of the year holiday celebration gathering and the planning is currently underway!

When: Thursday, December 1 • 6:30pm - 9:00pm
Where: Oakland Asian Cultural Center, 388 Ninth Street, Suite 290, Oakland, CA

Your co-hosts are in the planning stages right now, but expect the same wonderful features ...
- GREAT people
- TERRIFIC co-hosts and co-sponsoring organizations
- AWESOME entertainment
- highlighting & supporting community non-profits and their work
- food & drinks
- raffle drawings

All are welcome so please help us spread the word by inviting your friends to attend too! Guests need not be over 21.

Eventbrite: http://apicircle-endoftheyear.eventbrite.com/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=132753860162219

This will be inter-generational & multi-ethnic event and just a whole lot of fun!

Your co-hosts:
Chris Chang - Christopher Do - Claire Chang - Colbert Tse - Doreen Lew - Jason Kwan - Jenny Lau - Jonathan Leong - Kavoos Bassiri - Keesa Ocampo - Manufou 'Fou' Liaiga-Anoai - Melanie Lew - Nwe Oo - Paul Yep - Ron Lee - Rose Chung - Ryan Takemiya - Sandra Siharath - Stephanie Balon Wong - Taiko Fujimura - Tamiko Wong (Partial list)

Community supporters:
American Legion Cathay Post #384 - Asian American Donor Program (AADP) - Asian Peace Officers Association (APOA) - Bay Area Benefit - Books for the Barrios - Community Health for Asian Americans (CHAA)- Genki for Japan - JAB - Lunar Giving Circle - National Association of Asian American Professionals - San Francisco (NAAAP-SF) - Oakland Asian Cultural Center (OACC) - Pacific Asian American Women Bay Area Coalition (PAAWBAC) - Pacific Islander Community Partnership-SF Samoa - RAMA - RAMS, Inc. - SEACHAMPA (South East Asian Cultural Heritage & Musical Performing Arts) - TaiwaneseAmerican.org - Taiwanese American Citizens League (TACL) - Taiwanese American Professionals (TAP) - Wa Sung Community Service Club - Weaving Through Change (As of this date)

Business Supporters:
Blue Salud Special Events - Merriwether & Williams Insurance Services - Jewelry by TR (As of this date)

P.S. This location is close to BART, paid parking for $2/hour is available downstairs, and there should also be some street parking available but carpooling is suggested (greener and it's more fun, right?). http://www.oacc.cc/visit/directions.html

Attire: Ethnic or cocktail (which means more fun than business attire) suggested - but business or business casual is fine too.
Things are just getting started so please let API Circle know if you can help in either of the following ways:

Hope we will see you on December 1st!

Photo credit - Mukumbura on Flickr