May was Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month, an annual celebration that recognizes the historical and cultural contributions of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States. The AAPI umbrella term encompasses cultures from the entire Asian continent, including East, Southeast, and South Asia, and the Pacific Islands of Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia, according to The Library of Congress.
To commemorate the month, NewsBreak invited contributors to share stories about the history, achievements, and influence of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in their local communities. Here are our winners!
🏆 1 Editor’s Pick 🏆
Debra Blackwell's profile on Delaney, a local Southern California Pacific Islander girl who is making a big difference, was selected as our Editor's Pick. Delaney, who is 10 years old, is determined to showcase and maintain roots to her culture, as exemplified by her singing a traditional song called “Mele Kalikimaka” at a school Christmas event. As Debra writes, "While most people think the word 'Aloha' means hello and goodbye, the word holds much more than a simple greeting. Aloha describes a deep love and respect for people, including oneself and places." According to Debra, Delaney exudes the "Aloha attitude."
🎗 Top Story 🎗
Colorado Martini's video on the history of the Kanemoto Pagoda in Longmont, Colorado won in the Top Story category. According to the video, the Tower of Compassion was donated to the city by the Kanemoto family in 1966. The structure is built in the style of a traditional Japanese temple and each level represents the meaning of compassion.