Community Spotlight
LAT 2023 participants stand in front of the US Capitol building
(Photo courtesy of Les Talusan)
LAT comes back to DC
This month, Southeast Asian advocates from across the country joined SEARAC’s 2023 Leadership and Advocacy Training (LAT) program, marking the first in-person LAT since 2019. This is the 24th year that SEARAC has hosted LAT, which has graduated more than 1,300 participants from the program.

Over the course of the three-day program, 27 advocates celebrated their Southeast Asian American legacy, gained knowledge on the impact of civic engagement on their communities, and were trained on how to tell their lived truths to their elected officials. We are grateful to the presenters, staff, and – most importantly – the participants who made LAT a huge success.
Staff Blog
Alexis (second from right) with her LAT health track
Being part of a Southeast Asian rite of passage
SEARAC Summer Development Intern Alexis Friedman attended our LAT program earlier this month. For our staff blog, Alexis reflects on how LAT is a “Southeast Asian rite of passage,” and she writes about the experience of spending a week strengthening her advocacy skills for her Khmu community. Read her blog here.
Report design by La Bang Studio
Artwork by PawPaw Wah 
SEARAC releases youth mental health report
SEARAC's new report, Voices Unheard: Uncovering the Mental Health Impact of COVID-19 on Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander and Southeast Asian American Youth, highlights the experiences of Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (NHPI) and Southeast Asian American (SEAA) youth in California. In collaboration with researchers and the Asian American and Pacific Islander Coalition Helping Achieve Racial and Gender Equity (AAPI CHARGE), the report highlights the pandemic’s effect on AANHPI mental wellness, the importance of culturally appropriate mental health support, and SEARAC’s recommendations to reduce barriers to mental health care in California.
Join ICE out of California for upcoming forum
ICE out of California is excited to host Bring it Home: A Community Forum & Call to Action for the HOME Act (AB 1306) on Tuesday, Aug. 8, at 7 pm PT via Zoom. During the call, community members, impacted leaders, and advocates will discuss how we can protect California immigrants from being turned over to ICE after being found eligible for release. Learn more about the HOME Act here and RVSP for the event here.
Student loan repayment will resume by early fall 
The federal student loan payment pause will expire by the end of August, with interest starting to accrue again at this time. The first loan payments for borrowers will be due in late September to October. For more information, visit
SEARAC in the News
Voicing our support of affirmative action
NBC News and the Washington Post included SEARAC in their coverage on the Supreme Court’s decision to roll back the use of affirmative action in higher education. SEAA students, as do many other Asian American students, benefit from race-conscious affirmative action. SEARAC Executive Director Quyên Đinh shared, “It’s very clear that Southeast Asian Americans were absolutely made strategically to be invisible in this case. It really has been a challenge to paint a different picture of Asian American communities, including Asian Americans who still face so many barriers to obtaining our higher education, overcoming a trauma of war, of genocide, poverty [and] racism.” 
Join SEARAC's policy team
Are you SEARAC’s next immigration policy manager? SEARAC is searching for a candidate who will elevate our immigration work by achieving policy wins. A successful candidate will be able to lead our national immigration advocacy by analyzing immigration policies and laws, engaging federal policymakers, and working in community with our partners and coalitions to expand our influence. Salary range: $78,000-$88,000 dependent on experience. See our full job description here to learn more about our 4-day/32-hour work week and comprehensive benefits package.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled, and the deadline for priority consideration is Sept. 30.
Thank you to our incredible LAT sponsors
SEARAC’s 24th annual Leadership and Advocacy Training program was a huge success, and we couldn’t have done it without our sponsors! Your generosity enabled us to empower and educate the next generation of rising SEAA leaders during our three-day, intensive workshop in Washington, DC, earlier this month. 🤗

We’re always looking for new sponsors to invest in the next generation of Southeast Asian American leaders. To learn more, email SEARAC Director of Development, Jenna McDavid, at
SEARAC is a national civil rights organization that builds power with diverse communities from Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam to create a socially just and equitable society. As representatives of the largest refugee community ever resettled in the United States, SEARAC stands together with other refugee communities, communities of color, and social justice movements in pursuit of social equity. 

Find out more at