Category: Leadership Development

Image description: Hieu is indoors and smiling at the camera. There are posters on the wall behind them.

You Matter: Video Reflection on LEX 2020

LEX & the APIENC family brought so much… so many things, but what i’m most thankful for is the healing that it brought to me when i felt too overwhelmed to know where to start, & i want to share some of my learnings, un-learnings & re-learnings. radical vulnerability, as nerve-wracking as the build-up is,

Continue reading
Image description: A Zoom screenshot of 8 smiling APIENC staff and summer organizers. Some are making hearts and peace signs.

We Are Worthy of Support: Reflections from the Summer Organizer Program (part 2)

I haven’t always felt comfortable asking for help. Previously, I thought asking for help meant I was not “good enough,” and I thought that struggling on my own was a reflection of true strength. I learned this mindset from my family, who are Brown working class immigrants always battling to survive. I experienced this individualistic culture in my own Indo-Caribbean communities, where asking for support was never seen as an option. I witnessed systems of power silencing the needs of marginalized communities. Different internalized oppressions fueled this mindset, and I never had a space to unlearn these ideas and invite in new values.

Image description: Zoom screenshot of 25 smiling faces. Some are holding up peace signs and heart signs.

Self-Determination & Queer Power: Reflections from the Summer Organizer Program (part 1!)

To me, APIENC is love — love that the world desperately needs.

As a chronically ill, Việt, queer, nonbinary person, I felt unheard, othered, and silenced for far too long, by nearly everyone in my life in some way. I don’t blame them for that, but it hurt compartmentalizing myself. In that process, it began to be hard to see myself. The self became selves. I was often confused, constantly wondering why my relationship to love and vulnerability was missing something. I felt broken. I struggled to build support systems that held me.

Image description: Zoom screenshot of 25 smiling faces. Some are holding up peace signs and heart signs.

Vulnerability is Power: Reflections from LEX 2020

There I was, on a zoom call with over 30 people who I had just met the weekend before, having a vulnerable one-on-one conversation with Sammie for everyone to watch.

This was during the third session of APIENC’s annual Leadership Exchange, or LEX for short. Usually, LEX is an in-person, 2 weekend-long training for trans and queer API organizers, but this was no usual year. Since meeting in person wasn’t an option, APIENC held LEX over 6 weekends, over zoom. I had just started as one of APIENC’s Summer Organizers when I signed up for LEX, not knowing what to expect.

Image description: group photo of nine queer and tgnc API people kneeling and standing in the middle of the street, smiling toward the camera.

Reflections from a Summer of Growth 🌱 and Stars✨

APIENC’s summer has come to a close! Our Summer Organizers — Huanvy, Kai, Rai, Shreya, T, and Zaha — worked hard deepening their skills, building strong relationships, and learning how to ask for help. They’ve participated in exchanges with other activists, supported a 300-person contingent at Trans March, done in-person outreach for our needs assessment,

Continue reading