On Saturday, the eve of Lunar New Year, eleven people were killed and nine injured in a mass shooting in Monterey Park, a community where more than 65% of residents are Asian.
As hundreds gathered to celebrate the holiday, what should have been a night of community, family, and dancing turned into devastation, stealing the lives of eleven precious human beings. Our hearts are shattered for all who knew and loved them. Two victims have been identified as of this post—their names were My “MyMy” Nhan and Lilian Li.
With anti-AAPI hate skyrocketing across the country in recent years, AAPI communities have endured unconscionable fear and violence—only to be further compounded by this horrific massacre.
One of the local organizations responding is our existing partner, Asian Youth Center Los Angeles (AYCLA), a woman-led organization that has been deeply embedded in the Monterey Park community for more than 30 years. We first invested $75,000 in Asian Youth Center in May of last year to support their vital work of providing critical youth and family services, bystander intervention workshops, culturally relevant emergency food distribution, and so much more. In total, Together Rising invested $250,000 last year in partners serving AAPI communities across the country and $242,941.48 in structural change to help prevent future tragedies of gun violence.
We grieve with the Monterey Park community—and are investing an additional $50,000 in Asian Youth Center Los Angeles—whose team is activating on the ground to support those most in need.
AAPI community members celebrating holidays deserve to be safe. Children learning at school deserve to be safe. LGBTQ+ community members out dancing deserve to be safe. Black community members out grocery shopping deserve to be safe. As Caitlin Blunnie (@liberaljane on Instagram) illustrates,
“We all deserve to be safe.”
Art used with permission from Caitlin Blunnie (@liberaljane on Instagram)