Cultural Engagement

 

Cultural Engagement Event Series       PNA Working Definition of Cultural Engagement

 


 

Cultural Engagement Event Series

 

The Cultural Engagement Event Series presents screenings and discussions with a focus on social justice issues. The series explores society’s social institutions and how systems and behavior perpetuate and reinforce discriminatory practices and inequities. Through these events, the PNA intends to create a comfortable community space for education and thought-provoking conversations about important social topics.

 

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Upcoming Events:
 

JOURNEY TO THE WEST:
A CELEBRATION OF THE 30TH ANNIVERSARY OF SAKYA MONASTERY OF TIBETAN BUDDHISM


Thursday, May 29. 7-8:30 pm. Phinney Center Blue Building, Room 6. Free.

 

“Journey to the West” celebrates the 30th anniversary of Sakya Monastery of Tibetan Buddhism in Seattle. In 1984, H.H. Dagchen Rinpoche established Sakya Monastery to preserve and share Tibetan Buddhist culture and religion. Sakya Monastery has grown and flourished as a result of H.H. Dagchen Rinpoche’s leadership and the dedicated support of a community of volunteers. Using archival footage and video interviews, this film chronicles the remarkable history of this center, highlighting in particular, the vision and leadership of H.H. Jigdal Dagchen Sakya, the dedication and support of H.E. Dagmo Kusho as well as the contributions of master craftsman John Vichorek and master artist Dhawa Dhundup Ngoche. Join us for this special evening and learn more about this remarkable Tibetan Buddhist center in the heart of the Greenwood neighborhood. A short question and answer session with Sakya Monastery members will follow the film.

 

Though not required, please visit PNA’s Meetup page to RSVP.

Sakya
   
   

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Previous Events:
 

PNA explores RACE: Are we so different?


As part of our continuing cultural engagement series, PNA will be hosting a community discussion on Thursday, January 16th, 10am-noon at Greenwood Senior Center to explore the profound issues covered by Pacific’s Science Center’s exhibit RACE: Are we so different?  This fascinating workshop will be led by trained facilitators through from the Seattle Race & Social Justice Initiative.

 

The exhibit itself covers race in a particularly unique fashion. “By deconstructing historical, scientific and social ideas of race, the exhibit helps guests understand what race is and more importantly, what race is not,” states the exhibit’s website.  “It accomplishes this by focusing on three main themes: the everyday experience of race, the history of the idea of race in the United States and the science that is challenging some commonly held ideas about race.”

 

Though it’s certainly not required, those who are interested in joining the community discussion on January 16th at GSC are encouraged to visit the RACE exhibit beforehand.  To increase the chances of our PNA community visiting the exhibit at the same time, PNA has arranged group rates for the following dates and times:

Wednesday, December 11th, 12:30pm (Wednesday FREE for Seniors, 65+)*
Saturday, December 14th, 12:30pm

Group Rates: Child (3-5): $7.50; Youth (6-15): $10.25; Adult (16-64): $14.00; Seniors (65+): $12.50  


*Those wishing to visit on Wednesday, December 11th may meet at the Greenwood Senior Center at 10:45am and should bring a sack lunch.  Otherwise, you can meet the rest of the group at the exhibit itself at 12:30pm.

 

To secure tickets at these group rates and let us know you’ll be joining the group, please contact:
Patrick Dunn, patrickd@phinneycenter.org, 206.783.2244.

 

Race

    

   

Human Trafficking in Washington: From the Historic Mercer Maids to Sexual Exploitation in Internet Ads

 

This conversation, led by State Senator Jeanne Kohl-Welles, offered historical, cultural, socioeconomic and public-policy perspectives on human trafficking. We explored complex questions related to the ethics and policy around this issue, past and present. We faced misconceptions about human trafficking, confronting the fact that human trafficking is a billion-dollar, global industry. We focused primarily on sex trafficking and how and why it happens here. Historical accounts, film and current events were used to provide context. Finally, we examined what is being done to intervene and prevent human trafficking, including new laws, innovative law enforcement approaches and actions being taken by human-rights groups.

SKW
   

   

Conversations That Matter: Accessible Communities

 

Continue the conversation that was started at the "Accessible Communities for All" event on February 16 by joining us in a friendly roundtable discussion on the topic. Participants at this casual meetup will have an opportunity to discuss conversation topics in small groups, learn from each other, and come together at the end of the evening to share the collaborative results of their discussions! Even if you couldn't attend the main event, we still hope you can join us for this followup. Please RSVP to patrickd@phinneycenter.org or simply drop in on the conversation.

   

   

Accessible Communities for All

 

As we appreciate the spacious flow of a building's interior or the sensory rush of a welcoming, community garden - and as we enjoy these experiences with a diverse array of neighbors from all generations - we can all come to appreciate the true beauty of universal design. Concentrating on accessibility can also help us all to explore ideas that could grant us the ability to age in place, create more welcoming homes for our guests, and even save us the costs and burden of future home renovations.

 

When a community is developed with accessibility in mind, the benefits aren't merely restricted to those with disabilities

Access

   

   

The Roots of Migration

 

Why do people leave their beautiful villages, farms and families - embarking on a long, extremely dangerous journey - to end up in a foreign land where few speak their language, their hard labor is exploited, and they are often treated as criminals?

 

A group of Seattleites traveled to Oaxaca, Mexico to listen and learn. They heard stories about how food is grown, conditions for women, access to water, and the right to education. They learned about the effects of migration on families and communities and gave a presentation about their trip, followed by a discussion about migration and a Oaxacan dance performance of the Guelaguetza tradition.

The following organizations were represented at the event:

CEW
   

   

Seattle in Black and White

 

Seattle in Black and White: The Congress of Racial Equality and the Fight for Equal Opportunity was written by four Seattle authors, Joan Singler, Jean Durning, Bettylou Valentine and Maid Adams. Through their own experiences, they share the story of CORE and a wide array of efforts toward integration and racial equality in Seattle in the 1960s. Whether you lived through this period of our local history or not, this is a compelling record of grass-roots work on many different fronts: education, employment, housing, transportation and more.

 

Maid Adams told stories from her book, featuring the Freedom School project, and shared some mementoes and artifacts of that time. She was joined by Esther Hall, a key CORE member, activist and writer of Black history.

 

Copies of the book are available at local bookstores and the library.

 

Book information:
http://www.washington.edu/uwpress/search/books/SINSEA.html

Seattle in Black and White
   

   

Queer Youth

Featuring the film Put This on the Map

 

A screening of the award-winning local film, featuring 26 queer youth sharing their thoughts and feelings about gender and sexuality. These remarkable teens are from Bellevue, Redmond, Kirkland and other Eastside communities. In this affecting 35-minute film they raise issues of identity and questions of belonging, while expressing their essential humanity.

 

Following the movie, we had a discussion, facilitated by the Safe Schools Coalition. PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) and Teen Link was also on hand to share resources, along with the filmmakers.

 

Family, school, and social pressures create educational and health disparities for queer/trans youth, and for those questioning their gender or sexual identity. Research indicates that queer and transgender young people are more than four times as likely to have attempted suicide in the past year than their peers, as well as face an increased risk of harassment at school, drug and alcohol use, and being the victims of physical violence.

PTOTM
   

An Invitation to Explore Japanese-American Culture and History
Featuring the film Great Grandfather's Drum and the book Looking Like The Enemy.

 

We combined the Cultural Engagement Film Series with Phinney Reads to explore Japanese-American culture and history. Phinney Reads brings together readers to share a book, while the Film Series aims to create a comfortable space for community discussion about important social justice issues. Looking Like the Enemy, a memoir by Seattle author Mary Matsuda Gruenewald, describes her childhood on Vashon Island and her family's internment at a series of camps following Executive Order 9066 in 1942. Great Grandfather's Drum presents an hour-long overview of the Japanese-American experience in Hawaii focusing on a taiko drumming ensemble and community elders. The evening culminated in a facilitated discussion, touching on themes from both the book and movie. Ms. Gruenewald and Victoria and Cal Lewin, producer and director of the film, were in attendance.


In Sickness and in Wealth
From the documentary series Unnatural Causes

 

Community members gathered to view the documentary film Unnatural Causes. The series’ opening episode, titled “In Sickness and in Wealth,” lays out the series’ main theme: that the social circumstances in which we are born, live, and work can disrupt our physiology as much as germs and viruses. Following the film, attendees engaged with each other in conversation about questions such as: “If you were the President what three things would you do to close health gaps?” They talked with each other about racial, socioeconomic and other inequities in our city.

 

Colin Goldfinch, a Masters in Public Health and Public Administration student and advocate for accessible, high quality university education in Washington State, led the facilitated discussion following the film. He was joined by members of the Population Health Forum, an organization whose mission is to raise awareness and initiate dialog about the ways in which political, economic, and social inequalities interact to affect the overall health status of our society. Its goals are to promote knowledge and advocate for action in service of a healthier society.

 

Attendees shared the following thoughts during discussion:

“I’m so glad to know people do this. Get together with community and talk about these things.”

“Everybody should be watching this film.”

 

Sponsored by the PNA’s Cultural Engagement Workgroup, this was the fourth in a series of movie screenings and discussions focusing on social and racial justice issues.  The series explores society’s social institutions and how systems and behavior perpetuate and reinforce discriminatory practices and inequities. Another objective of these events is to provide a comfortable community space for education and thought-provoking conversations about important social topics.

 

Flyer
View event flyer

Ten More Good Years
This documentary explores the unique challenges facing LGBT elders.

 

Film Summary
The lives and challenges of LGBT elders is the focus of Ten More Good Years. Directed and produced by the president of LookOut Film, Inc., Michael Jacoby, the film introduces LGBT elders who share stories of their lives and LGBT history. Their stories reveal governmental and social injustices, making visible what being gay is now and what being gay and growing old in the United States will be. A generation of LGBT people who fought for their right to be out, proud, and equal are being forced back into the closet and silenced once again. The elders interviewed in the film share their concerns for their own future and for future generations of LGBT men and women. The goal of the discussion is to spark deeper conversations about how the community can understand and support LGBT elders.

 

Click here for more information on this film.

 

On Sunday May 1, thirty community members gathered in Community Hall at the Phinney Neighborhood Center to view the documentary film Ten More Good Years. This film investigates the injustices experienced by gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender elders. The event provided a space for community members to connect with each other as well as with community leaders who are advocates for justice for the older LGBT community. Following the film, attendees engaged with a panel of community leaders in conversation about personal experiences and the experiences of loved ones and community members. The panelists shared information about where legislation in Washington state stands, and attendees discussed ways in which they could work for change in their communities and workplaces.

 

Three panel members attended the event to connect with community members. Ruben Rivera Jackman has a twenty-five year career as a non-profit leader and is currently the Senior Resident Services Manager at the King County Housing Authority, where he has advocated for cultural competency among staff members. Marsha Botzer has served the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and progressive communities in various roles for over thirty years. She is the founder of Seattle’s internationally known Ingersoll Gender Center and has served as co-chair of The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, among many roles. David Haack is passionate about working for the improvement of services and enrichment of life quality for all seniors. He is the founder of the NW LGBT Senior Care Providers Network.

 

Sponsored by the PNA’s Cultural Engagement Workgroup, this was the third in a series of movie screenings and discussions focusing on social and racial justice issues.  The series explores society’s social institutions and how systems and behavior perpetuate and reinforce discriminatory practices and inequities. Another objective of these events is to provide a comfortable community space for education and thought – provoking conversations about important social topics.

 

The PNA looks forward to engaging community members through the viewing and discussion of the upcoming film in the series: “In Sickness and in Wealth” of Unnatural Causes, a documentary series exploring racial and socioeconomic inequalities in health. The upcoming film and discussion will be held from 3:00 to 5:00pm on June 5 in Community Hall in the Brick Building at the PNA, 6532 Phinney Ave N, Seattle 98103. RSVPs requested to: katiep@phinneycenter.org. For more information about this next film on June 5, please visit the PNA blog post or Facebook event page.

 

TenMore
Panelists Ruben Rivera Jackman, David Haack, and Marsha Botzer.


Starting Again: Stories of Refugee Youth

 

On Sunday April 3, fifty community members gathered in the Phinney Neighborhood Association’s Community Hall to view the documentary film Starting Again: Stories of Refugee Youth, which chronicles the lives of refugee youth in Washington state.  In the facilitated discussion following the film, attendees talked with each other about the issues raised in the film. They discussed how their lives were the same and different as those of the families in the film. They also talked about strategies for supporting refugee families as a community and as individuals.

 

Representatives of several organizations came to the event to share information about how community members can take action to support refugees. The discussion was facilitated by Pang Chang, the Refugee School Impact Grant Project Director at School’s Out Washington and producer of the film. School’s Out Washington is an intermediary organization dedicated to building community systems to support quality afterschool and youth development programs for Washington’s five to eighteen year olds. Erika Berg joined us from the Refugee and Immigrant Children’s Program of Lutheran Community Services Northwest – where she is the Community Outreach Coordinator. Sandra VanDerPool came from World Relief, a refugee resettlement agency, where she is Volunteer Coordinator.

 

Sponsored by the PNA’s Cultural Engagement Workgroup, this was the second in a series of movie screenings and discussions focusing on racial and social justice issues.  The series explores society’s social institutions and how systems and behavior perpetuate and reinforce discriminatory practices and inequities. Another objective of these events is to provide a comfortable community space for education and thought - provoking conversations about important social topics.
 
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Facilitator and producer of the film, Pang Chang of School’s Out Washington connects with a community member after the film screening.
 
03
Erika Berg of the Refugee and Immigrant Children’s Program talks with a community member (background) while other attendees engage in discussion with each other (foreground).
 
04
One of several small groups during the facilitated discussion following the film.
 
05
Tauryn Beeman shares information about her organization World Relief.


The House We Live In

 

On Sunday, February 27, the Phinney Neighborhood Association was packed with over 50 people who had come to view “The House We Live In,” the third episode from the documentary series Race: The Power of an Illusion.  In the facilitated discussion following the film, attendees talked about the issues raised in the film and shared personal feelings about how racism and discrimination have affected them on a mental and emotional level.  In addition, other topics included how the racism illuminated in the film affects their perception of society today and what can be done to fight against racism in our society.

 

At the conclusion of the program, attendees were asked to write down and name one thing they wanted to do because of attending the event.  Here is a sample of some of the responses:

“I am going to stand with immigrant farm workers in voicing the racism we experience in the U.S.”

“I will make more of an effort to get informed, attend events and participate in discussions.”

“Being more vocal when I hear people around me make racist remarks or jokes by questioning those stereotypes and ways of thinking.”

“Teach what race is (and is not) in Biology class.”

“As President of the African American Student Union, I wish to show this film and have a discussion at my university to expand the students’ way of thinking, then brainstorming ways to correct the system not just through words but actions.”
                                                 
Sponsored by the PNA’s Cultural Engagement Workgroup, this was the first in a series of movie screenings and discussions focusing on racial and social justice issues. The series explores society’s social institutions and how systems and behavior perpetuate and reinforce discriminatory practices and inequities. Another objective of these events is to provide a comfortable community space for education and thought – provoking conversations about important social topics.

 

The PNA looks forward to engaging community members through the viewing and discussion of the upcoming films in the series. The films (listed below) and discussions will be held from 3-5 pm on the first Sundays of April, May, and June, in Community Hall in the Brick Building at the PNA, 6532 Phinney Ave N, Seattle 98103. Space is limited. RSVPs requested to: katiep@phinneycenter.org

 

April 3
Starting Again: Stories of Refugee Youth
Chronicles the lives of refugee youth in Washington state

May 1
Ten More Good Years
A documentary about the unique challenges facing Gay and Lesbian Seniors

June 5
Unnatural Causes
Documentary series exploring racial and socioeconomic inequalities in health

 

01
Kevin Henry, Cultural Diversity Program Coordinator for the City of Bellevue, facilitates discussion after the film screening.

02
Emily Brosius, PNA Cultural Engagement Workgroup member, announces upcoming films in the series to community members.

03
Attendees participate in discussion after the film.


 
PNA Working Definition of Cultural Engagement

 

The mission of the Phinney Neighborhood Association is to build community by providing and promoting programs, services and activities aimed at connecting neighbors and fostering civic involvement in our diverse community. Said another way: community begins here.

We recognize that in our society and our community, there are deeply rooted structural inequities.

We want to do all that we can to be an organization that

  • promotes social justice and equity, rather than reinforcing inequity

  • creates a welcoming and inclusive environment that nurtures self-empowerment

  • recognizes, affirms, and values cultural differences and similarities

  • responds respectfully and effectively to our community

  • encourages self-exploration and accountability

In short, we want to make sure that the PNA belongs to the entire community so that community really can begin here.