Tina Shaw - Office of Asian & Pacific Islander Affairs

iowa department of human rights

June/July 2019 Edition


  • Immigrant Heritage Month Celebration at State Capitol

  • HEALTHCARE – Child Well-Being
  • CENSUS: Languages Second to ENG & SPA

  • EDUCATION -  API Higher Ed
  • CENSUS: Diverse & Aging Nation
  • Asian Fests - Upcoming Cedar Rapids Event & Recap of Siouxland's Highlights
  • ELDERCARE - Elder Abuse Prevention
  • Starting This Week: Central Iowa Summer Soccer & Summer Future Fest
  • HEALTHCARE – Cancer Resources in Various World Languages
  • DSM World Refugee Day - A Look Back


IHM graphic
IHM 2019


The Community Advocacy & Services Division in the Iowa Department of Human Rights, in a partnership with the Iowa International Center, celebrated Immigrant Heritage Month on June 25th on the Lucas Lawn located at the State of Iowa Capitol Complex. The event featured immigrants and refugees who shared their migration journeys to the United States and Iowa.

These storytellers spanned the globe -  Nigeria, Sudan, Vietnam, Bosnia and Bolivia - and work in the field of education, serve in the US military and advocate for foreign-born Iowans & civil rights. Commissioner Tim Perkins of the Iowa Commission of Native American Affairs provided welcoming remarks. Mr. Ahmadu Baba-Singhri, Ph.D., Commissioner and Chair of the Iowa Commission on the Status of African Americans, shared his thoughts on ways immigrants and refugees can contribute toward the betterment of Iowa and become civically engaged.

Dance performances by Karen Burmese and South Asian Indian dancers delighted the audience. A diverse array of multicultural food trucks were also onsite during this lunchtime public outreach event. [Event program]

CENSUS: Languages Second to ENG & SPA

Americans speak a ton of languages, and this map shows which languages other than English and Spanish are the most common in each state and Washington, D.C.

The US Census Bureau's American Community Survey annually asks more than 1 million Americans questions about their lives, families, and backgrounds. One question asks respondents what language they mainly speak in their homes.

Source: Business Insider

US language map

CENSUS: Diverse & Aging Nation

The nation as a whole continues to grow older with the median age increasing to 38.2 years in 2018, up from 37.2 years in 2010. The pace of this aging is different across race and ethnicity groups, according to new 2018 Population Estimates by demographic characteristics for the nation, states and counties, released 6/20/19 by the U.S. Census Bureau.

From 2010 to 2018, the U.S. population’s median age increased by 1.0 years. Amongst the different race groups:

  • The white alone-or-in-combination population increased by 1.0 years.
  • The black or African American alone-or-in-combination population grew by 1.4 years.
  • The American Indian and Alaska Native alone-or-in-combination population increased by 2.2 years.
  • The Asian alone-or-in-combination population increased by 1.7 years.
  • The Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone-or-in-combination population increased by 2.6 years.
  • The Hispanic (any race) population experienced an increase in median age of 2.2 years.
aging rate by race

ELDERCARE - Elder Abuse Prevention

Prevention guides and materials available in Chinese, Korean, Spanish and English:

  • 12 Things Everyone Can Do to Prevent Elder Abuse
  • 5 Things Everyone Can Do to Prevent Elder Abuse 
  • Red Flags of Abuse
  • Signs of Elder Abuse 
  • The Facts of Elder Abuse 
  • The Facts of Elder Abuse Elevator Flyer

Source: University of Southern California (USC) Center on Elder Mistreatment

HEALTHCARE – Cancer Resources in Various World Languages

The American Cancer Society offers information about cancer including prevention, early detection, treatment and managing side effects in 12 languages in addition to English.

Source:  American Cancer Society

HEALTHCARE – Child Well-Being

Nearly half of the nation’s child population (47%) are now kids of color. At the local level, every state reported a higher proportion of non-white kids compared to three decades ago. National and state-by-state profiles available. Click here to view the Iowa Profile. 

Source: Annie E. Casey Foundation - Kids Count Data Book: 2019 State Trends in Child Well-Being


A new guide on Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs) from the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Minority Serving Institutions (CMSI) calls for more engagement and research to understand how the institutions uplift and support Asian American and Pacific Islander communities.

The guide, “Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions: A Resource Guide,” aims to bring nuance to the experiences of these students and notes that AANAPISIs were created in response to the “history of invisibility among Asian American and Pacific Islander students in higher education.”

Though Asian Americans are portrayed in media and popular culture as attending elective universities, approximately half are attending community colleges. Additionally, eligible AANAPISIs enroll over 40 percent of undergraduate AAPI students. The AANAPISI designation signals that AAPI students deserve greater attention in higher education and access to educational resources.

Source: University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Minority Serving Institutions (CMSI)

Related article: Diverse Education

Asian Fest in Cedar Rapids - July 20

CA Asian Fest 2019save the date

AsianFest is a FREE event, held in the McGrath Amphitheatre in Cedar Rapids to celebrate and recognize culture and heritage from all over Asia located right in Eastern Iowa. Dine, dance, and develop an appreciation of the Asian communities in the area. Details at http://bit.ly/2S748yI

Schedule to be finalized, but you can expect the return of these favorites:

  • Local food vendors
  • Cultural Villages
  • Kid Zone, including a bouncy house and face painting
  • Live Performances
  • Interactive Displays
  • Annual fashion show

sxc 2019 asian fest logo

Siouxland Asian Fest

The 8th Annual Siouxland Asian Fest was held Saturday, June 15 and broke previous attendance records. CAPI Commissioner and event organizer Peggy La had this to say:  "Our Asian Fest is to educate our community that there's not only one Asian ethnicity. There's tons of backgrounds of Asian races - so, today why not celebrate together in one park in one day in a few hours?"

Miss it this year? Stay in touch and check out the event highlights via Face Book

Source: KMEG 14 (Fox 44)


Central Iowa Global Summer Soccer

A DHR Partnership with Genesis Youth Foundation

Registration is now open for the 2nd Annual Central Iowa Global Summer Soccer Program!  This program is open to middle and high school students who want to improve their game and increase their leadership skills.

Iowa youth entering grades 6 through 12 and 2019 high school grads are invited to join the Central Iowa Global Summer Soccer League presented by Genesis Youth Foundation in partnership with The Iowa Department of Human Rights, DMPS Community Education, and Kick It Forward.

Registration Link:  Genesis Youth Foundation

To cap off the soccer programming, a Summer Future Fest will be held the last day (August 3) for youth in grades 6 - 12 and recent high school grads. Youth are invited to connect with future employers, colleges, and community organizations and open their minds to the world of opportunities that are possible for their futures.

Summer Future Fest information



Des Moines has been celebrating World Refugee Day since 2015. This year, the cultural celebration of Iowa's refugees and immigrants was held at Valley Community Center in West Des Moines. A culinary feast and numerous cultural performances took place. Ethnic community-based organizations & services providers and resources hosted tables to provide information and support.

WRD is a United Nations event celebrated worldwide on & around June 20. The Des Moines celebration is organized by the members of the Refugee Alliance of Central Iowa.


WRD 2019 collage