All posts tagged: Lao Diaspora

Interview: Lao Community Service Center of Washington (LCSC) Executive Director Kayla Somvilay

What is the Lao Community Service Center of Washington? “Founded in 2016, The Lao Community Service Center of Washington (LCSC) is a non-profit community organization that assists refugees and immigrants with social, cultural, and educational services.  LCSC’s mission is to unite and strengthen the Lao Community in the Pacific Northwest.”  –LCSC In the 3 years since their debut, they’ve managed to put together language learning courses, community events like: pageants, seasonal festivals with focal changes, music concerts, and more! Best of all–they’re nowhere near done. All proceeds go towards providing the community much needed services, holding fundraising events–and, of course, the ultimate goal of having a Lao Community Center of our very own: to build a home for all the events and bouns we could ever want to throw. I can’t tell you how amazing that would be for our community. I managed to finagle an interview with Executive Director of LCSC, Kayla Somvilay to get her thoughts on her vision, fundraising, events, and her focus on the next generation. Sai Sisavatdy: Wow, what an …

Spoken Words: Hopes and History Passed Forward

One of my most favorite childhood memories were the nights I got to sleep with my “Gux Taaix” (great grandmother). I would curl up in her full-sized bed, tuck my little body in right next to her, pull the covers up above my ears, and ask if she was ready to “gorngv gouv” or story tell. She almost always said yes. What I remember most in those moments, was how these stories; more like fairy tales, made me feel. My highly active child imagination craved the comfort and familiarity of her voice but even further, I admired her ability to captivate me with nothing but her spoken words. As I grew older, I began to realize that this remarkable talent she had was not just specific to her, but something that was a result of years of tradition, something that is also inherent within me. Iu Mien and Khmu people have always carried our stories with us. In some ways, it’s hard not to feel that these stories are only small pieces informing a much …