Kittie is so passionate about civic engagement that she packed everything she owned into her car and moved to Oregon because she “wanted to do something that was more community facing.”
When she arrived, she was unemployed but excited about the possibility of creating change in her community. Once she became settled in she found a passion for working with youth because at a young age they are willing to listen, open to learning new perspectives.
This passion drove Kittie to become involved with the Chinese American Citizens Alliance.
Kittie also wanted to be a part of working for the Washington County government to make change at a structural level and be a part of the conversation taking place there.
How has COVID-19 impacted you personally?
“It’s nothing like anything we’ve ever experienced before. I’m very fortunate. I have a great network of people. We have awesome technology. There’s been so many things, great creative things that have been generated out of this.”
What about the work you do in the community, how has COVID-19 impacted that?
“The Chinese American Citizen Alliance census work has been pushed back. We had all these events planned for helping people fill out their census. We had tablets all ready to go, and we were going to invite people to come, especially people where English isn’t their first language to help them get this done. Right now, I’m not sure how we’re going to handle that.”
In light of API Heritage month, what does this month mean to you?
“This month is our month. Take time to learn your own histories and share them. Our history is very complex and nuanced, from the outsiders looking in we are just a bucket of Asians, but we are not. This month is our spotlight on our histories and our current lives.”
And, what does API Womxn Leadership mean to you?
“Being an API womxn means that we must be able to rise above all of those cultural stereotypes. It is something that is worthy of taking note of. There are a lot of cultural and social norms that we bring from our mother countries that don’t always agree with each other… So, being a woman means being able to rise above a lot. This is something that’s very, very worthy of being seen.”
Your government is there to serve you, find creative ways to engage with it!
- Write letters to your representatives
- Check out the Washington County Board of Commissioners Zoom meetings
- Have a conversation with someone in your community about civic engagement