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Friday, July 1, 2022

Hmong Cultural Center continues to strengthen community after pandemic

OROVIL — Even two years after the start of the global pandemic, the Hmong Cultural Center continues to work with the Hmong community of Northern California to meet the needs of those who live with constraints such as a lack of translators, transportation and more. Huh.

The nonprofit collaborates with Butte County to improve lives through cultural education, support, and services. For resources such as the Zusiab Program, which combines traditional Hmong and Western practices to serve Hmong veterans in Butte County, the county continues to renew resources with the center with funding from the Mental Health Services Act.


Funding for the agreement is derived from California Proposition 63 of 2004, which produced the Mental Health Services Act, a 1% tax on any California resident earning more than $1 million that would go toward mental health services, discounted County Behavioral Health Mental Health Services Act coordinator Holly Drobney.

“The funding stream is driven by the community and stakeholders,” Drobny said. “Our community says these are underserved communities that need money.”

Contracts such as Hmong agreements are contracts that are reestablished annually as long as stakeholders and community members continue to renew.

All plans and proposals are posted for a public comment period of 30 days before being presented at a public hearing.

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The Zusiab programme, which translates to “Happy Program”, provides elderly Hmong with a center to provide entertainment and overcome obstacles.

Director Seung Yang said, “The elderly largely live in homes and do not have space to move or share.” “Isolation causes stress so to be able to support them we need a place that is culturally appropriate to support their well-being.”

Yang said the group serves more than 80 people a year for the Zusiab program alone and serves more than 5,000 people in different countries.

“We provided traditional practices such as seeking a shaman for healing practices for a person, but we also helped lower barriers to Western healing such as going to a doctor or taking medicine and we would translate and transport them with Let’s help,” said program coordinator Charlie Xiong. “We have some elderly people who live alone.”

Outside the center, a garden stocking corn, lettuce, cucumbers and more is available to deal with people’s mental health, Xiong said.

“At times they say that the garden reminds them of their homeland,” Xiong said.

Outside of the larger program, the center provides youth resources, family planning, and cultural education.

“During the pandemic we pushed everything to Facebook,” said family expert Pahoua Yang. “Just these last two months we’ve gone back to in-person events and we’re trying to keep getting engaged. It’s really great to help families. There are days when we’re really busy and There are some where we go really slow. We just go on all day.”


The Butte County Board of Supervisors will meet today. As part of the consent agenda, the board will decide whether to approve the renewal agreement for outreach services for the Hmong large community for another term lasting from July 1, 2022 to June 30, 2023.

World Nation News Desk
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