Tag Archives: San Mateo

With Grammy Award Winning Artists, Environmental Nonprofit Celebrates Local Indigenous Leader

PALO ALTO – Green Foothills’ annual Nature’s Inspiration celebration Sunday, September 27 from 5-6:30pm will honor Valentin Lopez, the highly respected Chairman of the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band since 2003. Chairman Lopez is being recognized for his tireless work bringing international awareness to the experience of Indigenous Peoples and his dedication to fighting for sacred lands.

“I am excited to be performing during Green Foothills’ Nature’s Inspiration in celebration of environmental land conservation and Indigineous rights.” Raul Pacheco, founding member of Ozomatli.

“Green Foothills has been a valued partner for the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band in our fight to protect Juristac from a sand and gravel mine,” explains Chairman Lopez. “Juristac is the Tribe’s most sacred site and serves as a major wildlife corridor in Santa Clara County. This is a natural partnership and we are stronger together. I’m honored to accept this award” 

In addition to a live acoustic performance by Grammy award winning Ozomatli’s Raul Pacheco, this virtual event will also feature Indigenous vocalist Calina Lawrence and a special pre-recorded performance by Rock & Roll Hall of Famer, Neil Young who was moved by the fight for Juristac and the work of Chairman Lopez. Chairwoman Charlene Nijmeh of the Muwekma Ohlone Tribe will open the event with a Land Acknowledgement.

“This is a celebration of the people in our community who are fighting for a livable planet. Join us for a few moving performances as we stand in solidarity with local Native American community members. Tickets and sponsorships support the work of Green Foothills and the Amah Mutsun and include a local pie, what’s not to love about that?” said Megan Fluke, Green Foothills Executive Director.

For more information, visit greenfoothills.org/natures-inspiration.

About Green Foothills

Founded in 1962, Green Foothills has worked collaboratively in San Mateo and Santa Clara counties to help protect over 183,000 acres from development, weighing in on over 900 land use issues and 60 ballot measures. According to Executive Director, Megan Fluke, “We envision a resilient region where wildlife thrive, everyone has natural beauty to enjoy, and communities live in balance with nature.” For more information, visit www.greenfoothills.org


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Pacific Islanders Promote Their Own Identity

Despite mounting worries over the COVID-19 pandemic, more than a dozen Pacific Islander activists and media representatives gathered in San Mateo March 14 to anchor an online conference about the 2020 census and their collective stake in an accurate count.

They were joined online and over the airwaves by almost a hundred more people — various voices from the “Coconut Wireless” – who watched, listened and added their own perspectives.  The online conference was hosted by Ethnic Media Services with the support of the California Complete Count Office 2020 census.

“They [government officials] need to see us. We pay our taxes, we pay our dues,” said Nackie Moli, who runs the podcast Poly by Design. Identifying herself as a “proud Samoan woman,” she said she was excited to promote the census in her work with Island Block Radio, heard, she said, from Alaska to Mexico. “We all need to be counted.”

Census data permeates U.S. society. According to one expert, it directs $1.5 trillion in annual  federal spending (https://tinyurl.com/Census-drivenSpending) on health care, education and development, and more, in hundreds of government programs and projects.

Addressing the role of census data in supporting education, Manuafou Liaiga Anoa’i, of the Jefferson School District Board of Trustees in San Mateo,  said: “Empowering others — that’s census. Education in a classroom? That has to be funded. We have to continue to give our future generations more resources.

“We are an invisible community, but we don’t have that poverty mind-set. We continue to be warriors.”

Speaker after speaker addressed the battle to  distinguish Pacific Islander identity and “disaggregating” it from its current place as a subset of the Asian American population in the census.

The Pacific Islander community is highly diverse, but for most of its history, there have been few ways to specify origins on the census: Someone who identifies as “Asian or Pacific Islander” could also check boxes for Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Vietnamese, Japanese, Asian Indian, Hawaiian, Samoan, Guamanian  or “Other API.” “Other API” offered a write-in box for more detail – Tongan, perhaps, or Fijian, or something else.

In 2000, “or Chamorro” was added to the Guamanian choice, and for the first time, “Other Pacific Islander” appeared as a separate write-in box alternative to “Other Asian.”

According to the 2010 Census, the total U.S. Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander population was 1.2 million, more than half living either in Hawaii or California. By 2018, that number had grown to 1.4 million, still largely in Hawaii and California, according to estimates presented by Alisi Tulua, of One East Palo Alto and OCPICA.

With a fast-growing influx in populations from Micronesia, the Caroline Islands and other equatorial climes, the United States is seeing some of the first refugees of climate change and sea rise.

“The migration is inevitable,”said Epi Aumavae, of Samoan Solutions. “When you have nowhere to live, you have to move. That’s the reality.”

And it’s all the more reason for communities to be sure they’re included in the census this year, she said, because those communities will continue to grow and need resources. The numbers counted this year will be the basis for the next decade of government apportionments.

“Climate refugees are going to gravitate to where their communities already are. Those populations are going to increase because people will have nowhere else to go,” Aumavae said.

Finau Tovio, of the College of San Mateo’s MANA program, added, “Our Tonga is our churches, community leaders, ancestors.”

Between the 2000 and 2010 censuses, the number of people checking Guamanian or Chamorro increased 60%, Samoan grew 38%, and Native Hawaiian 31%, Tulua said. Also, people who checked “Other Pacific Island” and wrote in “Tongan” increased 55% and “Tahitian” write-ins increased 53%.

Other Oceanic populations demonstrated even more dramatic growth: Chuukese were up 544%, Solomon Islanders 388%, Kosraeen 301%, Marshallese, 237%, Carolinian 201%, Pohnpeian, 194%, Mariana Islander 177%, Yapese 177%, Fijian 138%, I-Kiribati 129%, Saipanese 117%, Palauan 115%, Papua New Guinean 86%, Tokelauan, 61%.

“We see the truth in climate change. East Palo Alto is, in majority, on a flood plain,” pointed out East Palo Alto native and College of San Mateo student Shaana Uhilamoelangi. “We’re seeing a big influx from the South Pacific.”

“It’s so important to be heard and fairly represented,” said Sonya Logman, chief of staff of the California Complete Count Census 2020 office in her opening remarks at the online conference.   The state government dedicated $187.2 million toward ensuring a complete count of its people. “We’re in a league of our own,” she said.

To reinforce that message, Aumavae urged meeting participants and listeners: “Make phone calls with your families, have conversations with relatives, because we’re not going to be able to do it face to face. Please, write your island in so it tells this administration and whoever’s next that we’re here.”

Mark Hedin is a reporter for Ethnic Media Services. He has previously written for the Oakland Tribune, the Central City Extra, the San Francisco ChronicleEl Mensajero, the San Francisco Examiner and other papers.


This article was originally published here.

Gem and Jewelry Show Shows It’s Metal in San Mateo This October

International Gem & Jewelry Show returns to San Mateo County Event Center on the weekend of October 4th 2019. Jewelry aficionados see gem shows as an opportunity to discover the latest in jewelry trends.

Spring 2019 runway reports from New York to Paris called for a return to maximalist jewelry. Harper’s Bazaar in it’s fashion month roundup cited key trends, including statement necklaces making a comeback to dripping stone details, re-imagined chokers, layered piles of different necklaces, larger-than-life earrings, and bunches of bangles- more is less seemed to be the theme this year said Deborah Yonick, jewelry style expert. Tiaras are back as are chandelier earrings and fringed chokers.

Silver is also a favorite metal with color, especially blue. Silver also combines nicely with pearls. Silver and diamond allow customers to wear luxury precious metals and stones without breaking the bank. Lemon quartz is well matched in silver as well.

Additionally, says Deborah Yonick, “ Gemstones have been ascribed unique energy properties that can work with our own energies to draw out negativity, hold onto certain intentions and provide desirable qualities like calm and strength. In much the same way, she says as crystals captured the attention of a generation during the 1970s gemstones are inspiring the youth of today to include them in their lifestyle.”

During the New York fashion week for fall 2018, Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen gifted guests at their show with white quartz to promote harmony and black tourmaline to ward off negative energies.

At the International Gem & Jewelry Show jewelry crafters can source directly from wholesalers and manufacturers. They are promised the lowest prices on beads, pearls, clasps, wire, supplies, chains, findings, in addition to finished jewelry. They can craft their own designs.

The event will showcase handcrafted beads from around the world in all components, colors, shapes and sizes along with loose beads and finished beaded jewelry and beading supplies. The marketplace will be open Friday 12pm- 6 pm, Saturday 10 am-5pm and Sunday 11 am-5 pm at San Mateo County Event Center 1346 Saratoga Drive, San Mateo, CA. Learn https://www.intergem.com/events/upcoming-shows/san-mateo-ca-bead-show-october-4-6-2019Mmmore here: