Southfield (CW50) – The Association of Chinese Americans, Inc. (ACA) is was established in 1972 to promote the general welfare of Chinese Americans and the Asian Pacific American community by supporting youth education, enhancing the lives of older adults and adults with disabilities, and reducing health disparities.

 

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The ACA provides four service centers in the counties of Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb. The organization provides social services, educational classes, preventive health care, and cultural events. programs and classes at the ACA offer ESL training, Medicaid/Medicare assistance, health seminars, recreation and exercise activities, choir class, Tai Chi, naturalization services, social work services, health screenings, and more. ACA’s programs are specially targeted to reach youth, seniors, and low income individuals and families. For a full list of programs, click here.

The community inside the center has described it as their “second family” or “second home.” It’s truly a place where not only Chinese Americans but all Asian Americans can feel welcome, especially those who are new to the country, are low income households, or want their children to be surrounded by others with similar heritage and cultural backgrounds.

Community Connect Host Jackie Paige, with Elinor Ho, President of the Association of Chinese Americans

 

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Elinor Ho, President of Association of Chinese Americans, joins Jackie Paige on Community Connect to talk about her journey to the United States, the ACA’s role in the Chinese American community in Michigan, and the bridges that link Asian American community to other communities across the country.

Elinor Ho as a child with her family (Courtesy of Elinor Ho)

While discussing her life of being raised in Hong Kong to coming to the United States, Ho described the challenges of knowing the English language but not understanding the dialect that each region of the United States has. For example, Ho described the American use of the words “buck” and “grand” to signify the dollar amount of American money. She also gave the example of the midwestern use of the word “pop” attributed to a soft drink. Her experience in the United States hasn’t been the easiest due to the cultural differences and the anti-asian hate that has increased in the last few years, but she’s called this country home for over 20 years now.

You can learn more about the ACA at ACADetroit.org

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