Thursday, April 1, 2010

Press Release: Voice of Vietnamese Americans, Other Organizations Collaborate to Host Census Assistance Event

Voice of Vietnamese Americans, Other Organizations Collaborate to Host Census Assistance Event
Attracts over 150 Residents; Dozens Complete Census Form with Assistance

Falls Church, VA -- In a collaborative effort to ensure Vietnamese-Americans are not underrepresented in the 2010 Census, Voice and Vietnamese Americans (VVA) joined forces with Asian Pacific American Legal Resource Center (APALRC) and other non-profit organizations to host a Census Awareness and Language Assistance Event on Sunday, March 28, 2010 from 1-6 p.m. at Eden Center in Falls Church, Virginia. Over 150 residents from the metropolitan area attended the half-day event to learn more about the Census, and many received one-on-one assistance with their Census 2010 forms.

Seven bilingual Local and Partnership Census Employees from the U.S. Census Bureau were on-site to answer general questions and also to provide translation services in Vietnamese, Spanish and Chinese. They assisted nearly 50 residents who completed their forms at the event. Event volunteers also passed out over 50 extra Census forms in different languages to attendees, as well as to shoppers throughout Eden Center, for them to complete at home.

Several Vietnamese American community leaders from the D.C. metropolitan area provided brief remarks about the importance of the 2010 Census and also spoke of the impact an accurate count can have on the Vietnamese-American population. The speakers were: Do Hong Anh, Chair of the Vietnamese Community in Washington DC, MD, VA ; Nguyen Ngoc Bich, Chair of the National Congress of Vietnamese Americans; Hoan Dang, VVA Board member; and Dinh Doan, Chair of the Coalition of the Vietnamese Veterans’ Associations.

The event drew the attention of many shoppers already at Eden Center, a Vietnamese-American shopping plaza that attracts visitors from all over the country. Attendees also enjoyed free Census, VVA, and APALRC-sponsored gifts, such as t-shirts and stickers, as well as free refreshments and DJ music.

This assistance event was part of VVA’s 2010 advocacy campaign to educate the community about the Census and to remind Vietnamese Americans to get counted. Since December 2009, VVA has regularly promoted awareness and provided guidance on how to fill out Census forms by broadcasting messages on Vietnamese public radio Viet Nam Hai Ngoai, on Vietnamese television networks, and publishing articles in Vietnamese printed media. The event was also part of APALRC’s participation in the national “Fill in Our Future” advocacy campaign that encourages all Asian American Pacific Islander individuals to be counted.

Other collaborating organizations that supported the event are: National Alliance of Vietnamese American Service Agencies (NAVASA) and Vietnamese Resettlement Association (VRA).

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