The Sikh Advocate Academy has been a stellar success. In the video below, you can hear our alumni speak about their experiences in the program. In addition, you can learn more by reading these blog posts: Advocating for the Future, Taking the Leap: The Birth of an Advocate.
The Work of our Alumni
After receiving training, support, and inspiration at the Academy, our alumni have documented over 250 distinct actions in the areas of government engagement, media engagement; and community engagement. Their amazing work includes the following highlights:
Our Advocates were quoted or published in the following outlets:
- Democracy Now
- Houston Chronicle
- Houston Press
- New York One
- KQED Radio
- National Public Radio (California)
- Huffington Post (California)
- Westborough Daily Voice (Massachusetts)
- Boston Globe (Massachusetts)
- Woman Around Town (New York)
- Queens Courier (New York)
- Sikhnet (Maryland)
- Houston Press (Texas)
- KTRK Channel 13 (Texas)
- KOAT Channel 7 (New Mexico)
- CNN iReport (Texas)
- Fox Channel 8 (Ohio)
- WKSU (Ohio)
- Cleveland Plain Dealer (Ohio)
- Columbus Dispatch (Ohio)
- Akron Beacon-Journal (Ohio)
- Memphis Commercial Appeal (Tennessee)
- WANE (Indiana)
- KPC (Indiana)
- Detroit Free Press (Michigan)
- Michigan Daily
- KCRG (Iowa)
- Siliconeer (California)
- KPCC (California)
- ABC30 News (California)
- The Fresno Bee
Our Advocates have organized:
- Grassroots surveys to help address school bullying in Arizona, California, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia. These surveys promote awareness and dialogue about the need to address the problem of school bullying and also empower local communities with diagnostic data that can be presented to schools and decision-makers.
- Khalsa Kids Empowerment Workshops in California and Texas, providing Sikh children with the tools and resources they need to address school bullying.
- The first ever “Women of the World” panel in collaboration with West Sacramento Gurdwara and the American Association of University Women addressing issues impacting Sikh women.
- A Sikh Education and Awareness conference in Indiana, the first of its kind in the region.
- Day of Seva events on the anniversary of the Oak Creek tragedy.
- Outreach to schools, libraries and law enforcement agencies for California Sikh Awareness and Appreciation Month.
- Collected more than 1,700 community petitions to the U.S. Congress in support of our continuing effort to expand opportunities for all Sikhs to serve in the U.S. Armed Forces.
- Conducted Sikh Awareness presentations across the nation.
- Wrote essays for an anthology about Sikh women in North America.
Our Advocates engaged with the Government in numerous ways. Some highlights include:
- In total, the inaugural class of Sikh Coalition Advocates met with the offices of over 16 Members of the House of Representatives and United States Senate, both in Washington, DC and in their field offices.
- Engaged community members in California to pass the nation’s strongest workplace protections against religious discrimination.
- In 2014, our advocates in Georgia organized the first ever Sikh Awareness and Legislative Day.
- Introduction of Sikh Awareness and Vaisakhi proclamations and resolutions in cities and states across the nation.
- One of our Advocates from Maryland was able to use the results of his bullying survey work to persuade his member of Congress to co-sponsor the Safe Schools Improvement Act. He even inspired a community volunteer—a local high school student—to accompany him to Capitol Hill to discuss the survey results in the context of post-9/11 school bullying. A short video about this success story is available here.
- Our Advocates have requested that elected officials support legislation such as the End Racial Profiling Act, Workplace Religious Freedom Act, and Safe Schools Improvement Act.
- An Advocate from Ohio engaged with the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in planning the Midwest Regional Summit.
- Secured Congressional support on a Dear Colleague Anti-bullying letter.
- Partnered with the White House to host listening sessions for the AAPI community in their local communities.