Culture & Community

The right to culture is a fundamental human right, yet it is a right that people in immigrant and refugee communities have to struggle to maintain. 

Years of organizing work has taught us that for our children to have roots, for our families to have a feeling of community, and for our elderly to embrace memories and discover the power of passing on traditions, we must continually fight for time and space to celebrate. AAU’s arts and culture work – our folk arts programs and Mid-Autumn Festival – were created out of recognition of this need and the power of bringing people together to honor, celebrate, and remember.

Our folk arts and culture work creates social change through realizing community members’ artistic and creative potential, building pride in cultural heritage, and building leadership and community.  AAU’s homegrown Chinatown Mid-Autumn Festival, begun in 1996, today is led by young adults and youth who have developed through AAU programs, and involves more than 200 community volunteers. AAU also supports folk arts programming at Folk-Arts Cultural-Treasures Schools (FACTS), a school that demonstrates what culturally responsive education looks like.

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