HOAS provides one-time or small programs to address specific needs in the community. See our list below of current and past small projects that are uplifting the East African community.
In the mural project summer program, youth learned about art and mural design, then designed and painted their own mural featuring the message "BLACK LIVES MATTER". The mural was featured at the Columbia City Gallery during the Rainier Valley Heritage Festival, as well as at the Jacob Lawrence Gallery at the University of Washington. Youth also designed a mural to be painted on the street through the Seattle Department of Transportation's Park-to-Pavement Project in the Rainier Vista neighborhood.
The Mural Project was funded in part by the Mary Migdal Scholarship, received by volunteer and University of Washington student Leila Reynolds. The Project was also supported by Columbia City Gallery, The Dark Room, the Teen Intern Program at Rainier Vista, Seattle Housing Authority, and Seattle Department of Transportation.
senior farming at rainier beach urban farm (current project)
Through a partnership with Seattle Tilth, HOAS enlists East African seniors to volunteer and receive training at the Rainier Beach Urban Farm and Wetlands. Over the past 3 years, 30 East African seniors have participated in growing and learning from the farm. As volunteers, these seniors learn and develop their conversational English skills, learn new methods for composting and creating gardens at their homes, and are taught farming techniques. Participants also cook meals for other volunteers using produce from the farm, engage in education programs, and hold celebrations for East Africans and community members at the farm. Many of the seniors are unemployed so the bags of fresh produce they get to take home help offset the costs of food and provide them with healthy meals!
Check out this article about East African seniors at the farm: "Seattle Gardening Program Pairs East African Seniors With At-Risk Youths"
healthy eating & active living! (past project, 2013-2014)
In partnership with Children's Hospital, HOAS developed a project targeted at teaching youth about the importance of healthy eating and active living. Over the course of a year, we held five workshops educating 60 youth and parents about healthy food options and the importance of staying active; three workshops for youth leadership development and how to engage with local leaders; had youth present at a Seattle Public School Board meeting and to a Seattle City Council Member about what they learned and how it impacts their lives; and provided a summer program which taught leadership, nutrition education, and cooking classes.
The Healthy Eating & Active Living project empowered young people and families to take charge of their health and make informed decisions about nutrition and exercise. This project was aimed at educating East African youth and families about health inequities that they experience regularly.
east african home childcare training (past project, 2012-2014)
In partnership with the Federal Refugee and Immigration Office, Somali Community Services, and the African Chamber of Commerce, HOAS offered childcare and business training to 80 East African women. This project had five cohorts of students who were empowered to develop the necessary skills to start childcare businesses out of their homes. The vision of this project was to address many issues facing East African immigrant and refugee women and families; unemployment and the inability to work outside of the home, expensive childcare costs and programs that are not culturally relevant for many East African families, low levels of education or certification for women to seek childcare employment, and lack of job opportunities.
The East African Home Childcare Training project was a 3 month training which taught women how to be quality childcare providers, serving healthy foods for children, computer and ESL classes, business training including financial management and developing a business plan, and empowered students to work collaboratively to start home childcare businesses with one another.
Computer training (past project with the hope of returning)
HOAS has offered many basic to intermediate computer training classes at our computer lab located in our main office. Classes taught East African adults basic typing, word processing, accessing and utilizing the internet, printing, and emailing. Many East African immigrant adults lack basic and necessary computer skills which are crucial to continued education and better employment. Although we currently do not offer a structured class, our computers are always available for use by clients and those in need. We hope to bring back our computer classes to continue developing the self-sufficiency of East African adults.