Hmong American Association of Colorado (HMAAC) has established several programs and services that immediately addressed some of the needs of the community, and has provided its social services to the Hmong and Lao community residents. Its programs and services offer an invaluable resource to the community. The past 6 years, the Association has been suffering from financial hardship just like any other non-profit organization out there, and that had put a limitation to its Elderly Program to cut down some of the services.
The moment, the Association provides with very limited services to its community while the staff are working to regain financial stability.
History and Objectives
Programs and services at Hmong American Association of Colorado (HMAAC) have been formally established as follows:
Elderly and Social Services: HMAAC was established in the 1990s with a significant focus on providing social services to non-English-speaking Hmong and Lao residents within Colorado. With some funding over the years, HMAAC acquired an Executive Director and case workers to provide core social services for the Elderly Program. However, due to recent years of financial challenges, these roles are now vacant.
- Main goal: To protect community residents by addressing their social services needs and develop methods to deal with those needs.
Hmong New Year Planning: In 2004, HMAAC obtained its 501c3 status as a non-profit organization. Thus, with the approval of HMAAC Board of Directors, representatives to the Hmong New Year Committee officially passed vote to become a planning committee of HMAAC so that the New Year Committee may benefit from the organization’s non-profit status and liability coverage.
- Main goal: To preserve Hmong culture through celebration by providing opportunities to gather, showcase, contest, fundraise, and network with community leaders and officials.
Summer Festival: In 2005, the Summer Festival event was established to promote health, sports, arts, and crafts to the community as well as fundraising opportunities for HMAAC, local organizations, and community individuals.
- Main goal: To promote a healthy community through health information sharing and sports activities while providing opportunities to gather and showcase media, arts and crafts.
Miss Hmong Colorado Pageant: In 2011, the Miss Hmong Colorado Pageant committee became a significant part of the Hmong New Year event to promote leadership for Hmong girls in Colorado.
- Main goal: To provide opportunities for Hmong girls within Colorado to develop leadership and public speaking (in Hmong and English) via pageant contest exercises and activities.
Facility Usage: HMAAC meeting and conference rooms, including equipment, can be checked out for usage by community individuals or groups.
- Main goal: To promote the availability of facility and equipment for development opportunities.
Workshops and Instructional Classes: With HMAAC approval and supervision, workshops and classes may be held to provide learning and development opportunities to the community. This may be achieved by independently or in collaboration with HMAAC coordination. For example, bible studies, Hmong language classes, specific workshops, or tutor sessions.
- Main goal: To promote development and training for individuals and groups within the community to become more aware and successful.
Over the last decade, the dynamic changes of funding objectives and funding sources, as well as leadership changes, have greatly affected HMAAC’s budget availability. This has resulted in losing the Executive Director and case worker employees. As a result, though HMAAC continues to uphold the above programs and services, it has been and is currently facing challenges to provide quality programs and services.
Programs and Services – Status:
The table below illustrates current programs, resource pools, funding sources, and weaknesses in some areas:
Summer FestivalOfficers, Board members and VolunteersVendor fees & fundraising activitiesSustainable
|Program/Service||Resource Pools Required to Implement||Funding Source||Status|
|Elderly and social services||
||None Currently||Urgently need funding|
|Hmong New Year||Representatives and Volunteers||Annual community donations||Sustainable|
|Miss Hmong Colorado Pageant||Volunteers & Pageant Contestants||Donations & Fundraising activities||Sustainable|
|Workshops and Classes||Executive Directors and volunteers||None currently||Urgently need funding|
As illustrated above, some areas of these programs and services are in great need of financial assistance. Specifically, with officers and Board members working on their daily professional jobs, there is a great need for the organization to acquire an Executive Director and at least one part-time case worker to plan and implement HMAAC-specific goals and objectives. Enabling these roles will enable HMAAC to jumpstart and achieve the established programs and services above.
Solicitation for Assistance:
We, the HMAAC team, recognize the existence of elderly and social services needs within the Hmong community and encourage individuals, businesses, and the professional community to make donations to HMAAC so that the organization can acquire an Executive Director and/or one employee to provide better daily services.