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Weekly Digest
January 5, 2021


COVID-19 and JACL operations and resources

JACL's physical offices remain closed. Staff continue to do the work of the organization remotely.  Please direct all phone calls to our Washington, D.C. Office at (202) 223-1240 and we will get back to you as quickly as possible. Otherwise, we will all be available via email. All staff emails can be found HERE. You can also check our website, jacl.org, for updates and COVID-19 resources. You can view our resources page here. 

Stay safe everyone and we hope to see you all in person again soon. 

- JACL National Staff


25th Anniversary of Portland JACL's Mochitsuki

Throughout the month of January, the Portland JACL is partnering with community groups to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Mochitsuki. Every day a new video will be posted. Our Mochitsuki headliner, Elena Moon Park has been sponsored with a JACL Legacy Grant.

Mochitsuki is Portland’s annual Japanese New Year celebration and has been a premier event in the local community since 1996.

Mochitsuki Portland is a community volunteer-run non-profit event.

The goal of Mochitsuki is to celebrate tradition by sharing Japanese and Japanese American culture.

The 2019 event attracted more than 3,000 people, not just Japanese Americans, but from every walk of life shared and enjoyed the event.

We hope to reach even more people through our online 2021 event!

Tune in online for our celebration of culture, food, and the arts!

Come and join the fun and educational event for the whole family!


Help Save Sakura Gardens Intermediate Care Facility

From Koreisha Senior Care and Advocacy
On August 13th, Pacifica Companies submitted a proposal to the Los Angeles City Planning office to convert the Sakura ICF (formerly Keiro Intermediate Care Facility) into multi-family housing with the addition of another 50 unit, 40,000 square foot housing unit on the south side of the campus as well construction of a parking structure.   
This proposal was unanimously rejected by both the Boyle Heights Neighborhood Council’s Planning and Land Use Committee on September 10th, and by the full Boyle Heights Neighborhood Council on September 23rd, both in an open, public forum (via Zoom) showing overwhelming public and local community opposition to the conversion.  As of now, we have not received any information that Pacifica has taken any further steps, but will advise you if and when we hear of anything.  Rest assured, we will be there to oppose this.

Help find a Bone Marrow Match for

Paul and Kazumi!


2021 Minoru Yasui Student Contest

“If there is suffering or pain that is unfairly imposed upon anyone, it’s my duty, it’s your duty to try to alleviate it because that’s the way in which we gain a better life for all of us.” — Minoru Yasui 

The Minoru Yasui Student Contest is proud to announce its 2021 essay competition on Refugee and Immigrant Experiences.  We celebrate the ideas and opinions of students in grades 6 through 12 and challenge them to write an original and thoughtful essay exploring refugee or immigrant experiences. Their essay should also demonstrate an understanding of the life and legacy of Minoru Yasui, who spent over 40 years as a dedicated leader serving diverse and often marginalized communities. 

Students are encouraged to research and share meaningful stories about the conditions, challenges, and support experienced by immigrants and refugees coming to the United States. At the same time, we hope to inspire the next generation of leaders who can embrace complex issues as Min Yasui did - with courage, agility, and thoughtfulness.

For more information on contest details, please go to the Minoru Yasui Legacy Project website:  minoruyasuilegacy.org/student-contest.  

Here’s what you need to know:

Other resources include:

  • For curriculum, logistics, and educational resources related to the life and legacy of Minoru Yasui and primary sources about Oregon’s Nikkei community, please contact Jennifer Fang at jennifer@oregonnikkei.org 

  • For student experience and research guidance, please contact Alan Zhou at alanzhou2018@gmail.com  or Kyler Wang at kyler.y.wang@gmail.com


2021 Day of Remembrance Events

JACL is looking to compile a list of all of the Day of Remembrance Events coming up around the country for members and their communities to be able to search for events near them. If you have any DOR events in your city or know of any, please email our Policy Fellow, Matthew Weisbly, at mweisbly@jacl.org with details for the event! We'll start posting a list of dates, times, and locations online and here in the digest starting next week! 




JACL National Announces the 2021 Scholarship Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Japanese American Citizens League (JACL) announced that the 2021 National Scholarship and Awards Program is now underway.  The JACL annually offers approximately 30 college scholarships for students who are incoming college freshmen, undergraduates and graduates, and those specializing in law and the creative/performing arts. There are also financial aid scholarships for those demonstrating a need for financial assistance.  

Scholarship Program guidelines, instructions, and applications have been posted on the JACL website, www.jacl.org, and can be accessed by clicking the “Youth” tab on the menu bar. You may also click the button below “To Learn More or Apply Click Here.”

Starting this year, the application forms for the scholarship program will be completely online. Freshman applications must be submitted directly by the applicant to National JACL through the online form no later than March 1, 2021, 11:59 p.m. Hawaiian Standard Time (HST).  

Applications for the non-freshman scholarship categories (undergraduate, graduate, law, creative/performing arts, and financial aid) are also to be sent directly by the applicant to National JACL through the online form no later than April 1, 2021, 11:59 p.m. Hawaiian Standard Time (HST).  

For more information on the National JACL Scholarship Program, contact Scholarship Program Manager Matthew Weisbly at scholarships@jacl.org.


APAICS & NCAPA Resume Bank for Presidential Appointments

For more information about the appointment process, types of appointments, and what to expect, please visit the Partnership for Public Service’s “Ready to Serve” website: https://presidentialtransition.org/readytoserve/

Please review the previous Plum Books to research listings of former appointee positions, departments, agencies, and desired bureaus to inform your application.

Access the resume bank submission form here: bit.ly/AAPIResBank


Seattle JACL: Uprooting anti-Blackness in the Japanese American Community Series

This free series is geared toward youth, open to all, and created through an intergenerational committee of API activists, including our moderator Dr. Kyle Kinoshita.

Japanese American youth: What needs to happen in our community so that we can be powerful accomplices in the movement for Black lives? How can we ensure that our cries for “Never Again is Now!” are rooted in collective BIPOC action—not simply in the self-interests of non-Black Nikkei or API's? Join us for these much-needed learning sessions where we’ll be “cleaning our own house” and examining our history (such as the creation of the "model minority" myth and Black/Asian solidarity). By coming together to learn and connect, we want to give you the anti-racist tools you need to navigate the world today, and to lay the foundation for a future we all believe in.


Join Us in Support of H.R. 40

JACL Executive Director, David Inoue, discusses JACL’s support of H.R. 40. H.R. 40 would create a commission to examine the institution of slavery, its legacy, and make recommendations to Congress for reparations, beginning a process of repairing and restoring after centuries of enslavement. Click the image above to watch the full video statement. 


Hate Crime Resources 

We've updated our Hate Crimes Page to include more information and reporting options for members of the community as hate crimes increase as a result of COVID-19. You can visit the updated page here. 


Follow JACL on:


JACL Headquarters
1765 Sutter Street
San Francisco, California 94115
(415) 921-5225 | mbr@jacl.org

JACL DC Office
1629 K Street NW, Suite 400
Washington, D.C. 20006
(202) 223-1240 | policy@jacl.org

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