Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Project Tech Reunion

Last Saturday, graduates of Project Tech gathered together to hear from each other, play games, and have fun! Invited speakers shared their experiences working in various fields using technology and encouraged the youth to continue pursuing their education in technology.

A civil engineer in water management, a computer software engineer, and a student at Bellevue Community College talked about how they use techology in their every day lives.

The alumni had a great time, learned a lot, and of course, loved all the food!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Paris Comes to Chinatown!

Christine Ho, local marketing expert and a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu culinary arts school in Paris, came to share her skills with CISC seniors the other day.

They learned how to make chicken piccata with lemon, capers and white wine, breading the chicken cutlets and frying them to perfection.

The smells coming from Sunshine Garden were heavenly! And all enjoyed the fruits of their labor.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Refugee & Immigrant Advisory Committee

Executive Director, Alaric Bien, has been appointed to the City of Seattle's newly formed Refugee and Immigrant Advisory Committee. This group's task will be to oversee the implementation of the city's Immigrant and Refugee Action Plan.

This plan will remove barriers and ensure that foreign born residents are served as well as those who are native born. The plan addresses access to services and information, protection of civil rights, civic engagement, work force and economic development, and service delivery.

According to 2006 Census estimates, 105,000 Seattle residents (19%) are foreign born.

Friday, November 30, 2007


CISC was officially awarded a service grant from the Taproot Foundation this week. One of five grantees in this round, we will use this grant to work on messaging and branding for the organization.

We have already met with our account director and are now assembling a team of volunteer professionals to help us with this project. As one of the core parts of our strategic plan, we want to be able to better articulate our mission and services to the community.

Staff will be working with the Board Marketing Committee and are looking forward to completing the project next spring. For more information or to get involved, give us a call!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Kudos to the DON!

The DON?? That's the Department of Neighborhoods for the City of Seattle. As part of their updating of neighborhood plans, this time around they are coming out to the community to solicit input from residents, rather than wait in City Hall for people to show up. What a great idea!

We had over 25 elderly residents today participate in a focus group and express their opinions on land use, transportation, housing, open space, capital facilities, and utilities. Not something our seniors often get to comment on, for sure!

And they were able to do it in their own language, in a setting comfortable to them. Good work and bravo to new DON Director Stella Chao!

If you'd like to put in your own 2 cents, go to the Department of Neighborhoods website and make yourself heard!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Preschoolers Celebrate Thanksgiving with Seniors

Yesterday, as 55 Sunshine Garden seniors celebrated Thanksgiving, many of our 4 year old preschoolers joined them and got their first taste of turkey.

What a special treat for young and old alike! Not just turkey, but fruit, spring rolls, puri, and much, much more. Now that's something to be thankful for!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Get Out and Vote

Last night 30 members of the Seattle API community came to CISC to learn from Pabitra Benjamin of APIAVote in Washington, DC how to organize our friends and neighbors in advance of the 2008 elections.

This workshop was hosted by ROAR (Raising our Asian Pacific Islander Representation), a grassroots group of local community activists working to expand the infrastructure for non-presidential elections by informing voters about every single race and important ballot measures.

Engaging infrequent voters, limited English speaking voters, and younger voters is a goal that will be accomplished through a series of monthly workshops throughout 2008 and beyond, according to Nadine Shiroma.

A new exhibition focused on API voting will be also be featured at the Wing Luke Asian Museum when it reopens in its new space next May. To participate in this project, contact Joshua Heim at the museum.

To find out more about ROAR and participate in these exciting workshops, contact George Cheung.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Eastsiders Give Thanks Early

Seniors at our North Bellevue Community Center site celebrated Thanksgiving early with a holiday party and lunch. Activities included making Pilgrim and turkey decorations, T-Day bingo, and of course, FOOD!

And yes, this met the nutritional guidelines required for all senior meal sites - and tasted great too!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Transportation Planning in Bellevue

As part of their community outreach efforts, the City of Bellevue conducted a focus group with some of our seniors at the North Bellevue Community Center.

They gave their honest opinions on the upcoming sidewalk and bicycle plan the city is putting together and offered valuable suggestions such as lengthening the amount of time signals give to people crossing the street, increasing the size of traffic lights, much more.

Did you know that one of our seniors bicycles from his home to the center every single day of the week, rain or shine? That's what the program is all about - keeping seniors healthy, active, and engaged in their community!

Friday, November 09, 2007

Special Friends of CISC

Wednesday evening, Dr & Mrs John & Elena Yam hosted a small gathering of some of CISC's most special friends. Good food, great conversation, and of course we all learned a little more about CISC that night.

Did you know that CISC provides services at 14 different sites throughout King County? Do you know where they are?

Did you know that CISC runs 5 different play and learn groups with two more coming on line soon? Can you guess where they will be?

Do you know how much we rely on the generosity of individual donors to help provide services to more than 5,000 individuals each year?

To get the answers to these questions and many others, contact Donna Ma at

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Not Just for Kids!

It's not just the kids that had fun today. Seniors at the North Bellevue Community Center also celebrated Halloween by dressing up, making crafts, and generally having a great time! Check out these photos!

Trick or Treat!

This morning our pre-K kids got all dressed up and went trick-or-treating through our offices.

What luck! All the staff had prepared lots of treats and goodies for the kids.

Funny thing is, most of them didn't care to get candy. They'd rather get stickers instead! One girl even told her teacher that she thought chocolate tasted bad! Imagine!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Raising a Dragon

Saturday, CISC held a conference on parenting challenges commonly faced by Chinese families at Tyee Middle School in Bellevue. Over 65 families participated and learned about common themes, issues and how to address them.

These workshops were hosted by the Seattle Chinese School 西雅圖華文學校 and sponsored by FACES East, SOAR, and United Way .

Beehive Worldwide

As we continue our work with One Economy to bring information and resources from website to our Chinese speaking community, we realize that we are just part of a world wide effort across many countries and in many languages.

One Economy recently announced the launching of their site in Istanbul in Turkish! So if any of you are interested in checking it out, just click on this link!

Pretty cool, huh? And don't forget to check out the stories on new Americans, Yanna Fang and Auntie Jie!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Are You Prepared?

Yesterday, Sunshine Garden and the Family Caregiver Program teamed up to present information on disaster preparedness, especially for those caring for loved ones in their home.

Increasing awareness of what we all can do in times of disaster is critical in our community. Ironically, attendance was less than expected due to the high wind warnings yesterday afternoon. Better safe than sorry!

For more information on anthrax, earthquakes, droughts, small pox, snow storms, ice storms, civil disorder, and more, click here to go to

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Happy, Healthy and Active

Sunshine Garden seniors have a new activity to keep them busy! A new ping pong table, donated by Fred Yee in memory of the 7th anniversary of his wife Amy's passing.

Fred is an avid ping pong player and wanted to share his passion with the seniors at CISC. Not only do these octogenarians exercise their minds every day through workshops, seminars and classes, they keep their bodies active and healthy with exercise, dance, and now ping pong!

What a difference it makes in our seniors' lives! If you have time, come on down and play a set. You just might be surprised at how good they are!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

API Health Fair

Last month, in conjunction with International Community Health Services and the WA State API Hepatitis B Task Force, CISC hosted the annual API Health Fair at the International Family Center-Seattle.

Many exhibitors participated, offering workshops on hepatitis, breast health, childrens' dental health, and Chinese medicine. Also offered were blood pressure checks, dental screenings, and mammograms too.

Raffle prizes, free massages and tai chi lent a fun and festive atmosphere!

Monday, October 08, 2007

Some more pics

Just thought we'd share some more photos from the CISANI conference. These were mostly taken by CISC resident photographer/office manager/HR specialist Nelson Tang. He is also available for weddings, birthdays and bar mitzvahs...

Thursday, October 04, 2007


Last week, CISC hosted the 28th annual conference of the Chinese Immigrant Service Agency Network-International. Delegates from across the US, Canada and Hong Kong. We spent 3 days sharing information, resources and learning from each other and local experts.

We also visited local partners, including International Community Health Services, Asian Counseling and Referral Service, Seattle Public Library (and got to see the cool automated book return system), Kin On Nursing Home, Crossroads Mall, and Microsoft, where we learned about community giving and using technology to further our missions.

If you think that sounds like a lot - it was! But all the participants felt that is was a rich and rewarding 3 days in Seattle. And we even got a bit of sunshine!

For more pictures, click this link to see the photo journal of the entire 3 day event!

Nankai Middle School

Tuesday, a group of students from Nankai Middle School in Chongqing came to visit CISC as part of their exchange program with Chief Sealth High School in West Seattle.

They learned about the local Chinese community, immigration to the Seattle area, and services provided to immigrant families.They also had a chance to visit with the seniors at Sunshine Garden and were delighted to find that one of the members is originally from Chongqing, though she hasn't been back in 50+ years!

What a great time they all had chatting in local Chongqing dialect while the rest of us tried to make sense of what they were saying!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Sunshine Garden Celebrates 20 Years

Saturday, members and staff of Sunshine Garden Senior Day Care Center and their families came together to celebrate 20 years of activities keeping seniors healthy, active, and engaged in their community.

Singing, dancing, magic, and an art exhibition were featured. Oh, and of course food! Board President Mary Hsu congratulated the Center on this milestone, while Executive Director, Alaric Bien praised the staff and numerous volunteers for helping to make this a true home away from home.