By Christina D.
May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month in the United States. The celebration began in 1977, when Congress declared the first 10 days of May as Pacific Asian American Heritage Week. The tradition continued until 1990, when Pacific Asian American Heritage Week we extended throughout the month of May.
Like most heritage months, Asian Pacific American Heritage Month is a celebration of Asian and Pacific Islander Americans in the United States. Americans are encouraged to celebrate Asian cultures, learn AAPI history, and participate in events.
ActioNet is happy to celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month! Throughout May, the ActioNet blog will be emphasizing the voices of ActioNeters in the AAPI (Asian American Pacific Islander) Community. Tune in each week to get new perspectives on history, holiday, and cultures.
This week, ActioNet begins with a short interview with Christina D. to go over how she and her family celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month.
Christina is a Quality Manager for our ActioNetDesk Team. She ensures that there is always desktop support available for our customers. Through her diligent effort, the ActioNetDesk Team has received a consistent 97-98% monthly satisfaction rate from customers.
Outside of work Christina enjoys spending time with her family, especially her two teenage daughters.
“I love to spend more time with them before they grow up and head to college… [I love to] spend time with them and also teach them about our culture, traditions, and see the differences between how I have been raised and how they have been raised,” says Christina.
Listen to Christina’s full interview in our first Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
Favorite Shared Traditions
“The one tradition that my family has is the Lunar New Year. We cook traditional Vietnamese food and have a family gathering. During that time we give the kids good luck money, in the red envelopes, for prosperity and good luck.”
The front of our ActioNet 2021 Lucky Money cards, distributed to all employees
Christina’s family traditions extend beyond holidays as well. She shared an important lesson she is passing onto her children, one that she learned from her own parents.
“… They need to be respectful of adults that are older than them. I think that’s a very important one of our traditions.”
Celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
Christina holds Asian Pacific American Heritage Month very close. She, like many other Asian Americans, uses the time to look back on history, the contributions members of the AAPI community have made, and learn more about other Asian cultures.
“One thing we do recently is we try different cuisines and dishes from different countries,” she says. “Recently we have gotten into Japanese dishes. I never make sushi so that is something we try new. Another one is Korean kimchi, which I have never made before. … That gives us a little more perspective on cultural differences.”
Christina encouraged those outside of the AAPI community to take part in the events and celebrations. She believes people should take this month to listen to Asian voices and become informed on different Asian cultures. Most important, however, is that people take this month to speak up more.
“Other communities have recognized Asian culture and actually have been very supportive. I know with recent news we have heard about racism against Asians and I’m happy to see that there’s more people to stand up along with us, along with Asian communities, and fight back racism,” Christina says.
“It’s very important to me. Not just to me, but to the community and to our generation. To my kids, when they grow up. … [So] we need to speak up more. Just to be aware. Speak loud in those cases, because there are many cases that may be racist but we are not aware of. So in those scenarios speaking up more will make us aware. That’s how we fight back.”
“Take this month specifically to celebrate our culture and to learn more about our contribution to communities,” said Christina as our interview concluded.
There are many places that people can go to learn more about Asian and Pacific Islander cultures and history this month. The Asian Pacific American Heritage Month website hosts an array of information and government-run events. Local organizations are also great resources for community-led events.
At ActioNet, we will be spending the month amplifying the voices of AAPI employees. Tune in next week for another Asian Pacific American Heritage Month blog.