Newsletter Vol 1 No 5

Asian Pacific Islander Desi American Heritage Month

Celebrating Asian, Pacific Islander, & Desi (APIDA) Month

May is Asian, Pacific Islander and Desi (APIDA) Heritage Month.
This month, we celebrate the history, lives, experiences, and joy of our AAPI friends, neighbors, fellow Vermonters. Over the last year, the APIDA community has seen an increase in attacks as a result of the pandemic, which has been tragic and traumatizing for many. VT PoC’s May newsletter focuses on uplifting APIDA voices in the state by featuring VT-APIDA for Black Lives, a Vermont racial justice advocacy group. Check out our feature below for more on this group!
To our monthly newsletter readers, continue to stand with the APIDA community. We encourage you to support local APIDA-owned businesses, as well as all BIPOC businesses.
You can find a list of BIPOC-owned businesses here.

We at VT PoC also wanted to extend a huge thank you to those who attended our Financial Literacy Workshop! Thank you to our amazing panelists – Peter Deng, Zerihune Finn, Prabin Pokhrel and Jodie Ducharme – for making it such a success.

Get to Know VT PoC

Businesses and People

Ita Meno


Ita Meno, Health and Housing Inspector for the City of Burlington, has lived in Vermont for 18 years. Their favorite part about working for the city is “getting to know neighbors, places, businesses, organizations…[to] feel a part of the ebb and flow of a city.” Yet, their experiences as a professional in Vermont are not without challenges, as there can be days that pass without seeing another BIPOC face. Engaging in community and organizing around racial liberation has provided a way to overcome these challenges. Their efforts include being a member of APIDA for Black Lives, a Vermont racial justice organization that signed a letter last month calling for Governor Scott to end his silence on anti-APIDA hate. Meno’s advice for the BIPOC Vermont community:

“Let’s continue to show up for one another.”

Read the rest of the story at this link.

Updates and Resources


  • BIPOC Vaccination Clinics

    VTPoC is proud to announce that our own Weiwei Wang is leading the BIPOC Vaccine Clinic registration! So far, the clinic has vaccinated 1000+ people.
    Click this link to register now if you still need an appointment.

    Still feeling skeptical about the vaccine?
    Click this link for additional info on the safety and benefits of getting vaccinated.

  • TSL BIPOC Graduate Fellowship

    The Solidarity Library (TSL) is offering a paid fellowship to low-income students/recent grads of color who are looking to apply for graduate school. Applications are due this month!
    Get the details here.

  • Sailing Camp BIPOC Scholarship

    The Community Sailing Center is offering 10 BIPOC campers a 100% fully paid 4-week summer camp experience! CSL also plans to support these campers in the next four years should they continue sailing in high school.
    Click this link for more details!

  • Construction 101 Workshop

    Get paid to learn! This 6-week intensive program that aims to equip Burlington’s underserved populations with the skills and certifications needed for a job in the construction industry.
    Click this link to apply!

  • Application Extended: BIPOC Generator Scholarship

    Generator aims to support BIPOC artists, entrepreneurs, inventors, and craftspeople by providing scholarships that will advance their creative, business, and professional pursuits.
    Click to learn more about the scholarship.

  • Con Hogan Award

    Nominations are now being accepted for the $15,000 Con Hogan Award for Creative, Entrepreneurial, Community Leadership. Nominations will be accepted through the Vermont Community Foundation’s website until June 24, 2021.
    Visit this link to nominate someone!



  • APIDA For Black Lives Statement

    APIDA for Black Lives called on the state last month to break its silence following the deadly attacks on APIDA in Atlanta and to pass legislation on racial justice.
    Read their statement at this link.
    To hear their interview with VPR, click this link.

  • Pablo Bose Named Kidder Award Recipient

    Pablo Shiladitya Bose has been named the 2021 recipient of the George V. Kidder Outstanding Faculty Award. Bose conducts research on refugee resettlement, food and migration, environmental displacement and more.
    Read more about his accomplishments here.

  • VT Author Kekla Magoon Wins National Award for Y.A. Novels

    Montpelier writer Kekla Magoon was honored with the Margaret A. Edwards Award for four books that delve into civil rights history, and explore themes about confronting racism, white supremacy and injustice.
    Read the story by VPR here.

  • Derek Chauvin Trial Verdict

    We at VTPoC recognize the weight and emotions that came with the Derek Chauvin verdict. We know that the verdict is just one case of accountability, and regardless of the outcome, the trial brought up past and ongoing trauma for the Black community. There are resources for support here in VT who can offer guidance and healing.
    Click this link for a list of Black mental health practitioners.

  • Digital Provide Project

    Fletcher Free Library is now providing free laptops & 4G Hotspots on temporary loan to anyone with a library card!
    Learn more about the loans here.

  • Restaurant Revitalization Fund

    The Restaurant Revitalization Fund Application portal opens May 3rd! It is open to any eligible establishment until all funds are exhausted.
    Click here for more info.

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