A Look at What’s Happening at Stone Soup April

April showers have come and gone! Now, we look forward to programs coming to a close and to the start of summer. In the following months, the ever-popular Hmong Culture and Literacy Academy program returns.

Here’s a quick look at what we’ve been up to . . .

Play Group and Early Learning Academy children and parents had quite an exciting month that ended with a special visit from Clifford the red dog. Both programs have been promoting early literacy. Children have checked out books from our library and reading at home with parents, aunts, uncles, and grandparents. Children are learning to love reading!

Strong Families put together a Spring Fair that engaged a group of Hmong parents in a discussion about education. Many parents raised concerns around bullying of their children at school, graduation, higher education, testing, and many other issues. While parents were busy talking about education, children were busy enjoying enrichment activities.

Parent Leadership Group celebrated parents May Ngia Her and Lee Her who have been selected as First 5 Fresno County’s Hands on Hero Awards winners! We are so proud of their leadership in leading the parent group and for being such great role models.

Partnerships/Collaborative Projects

• On behalf of the FUSD graduation taskforce MaiKa attended listening sessions with students, teachers, community members, and parents to gain insight on the experiences, opinions, and ideas to help the school district increase graduation rates among students.

• MaiKa and Jonathan Tran, Policy Director from SEARAC discussed the implications of the lack of disaggregate data on Southeast Asian subgroups at the Demystifying the “Model Minority”: Disaggregating Data to Promote Success Among Southeast Asian Youth convening held at the Central Valley Regional Center by the Central California Children’s Health Institute.

• Stone Soup Staff participated in the April 25th First 5 Fresno County’s Strategic Planning Lighthouse session at the Radisson Hotel.

• MaiKa, Dan Griffin, and Alice attended the April 26th- The Children’s Movement “State of Our Children” Breakfast with special guest speaker Daivd Lawrence Jr., Chair of Florida Children’s Movement. If you haven’t already, please join the movement.

• Alice and MaiKa participated in the April 30th – Campaign for High School Equity coalition convening in Los Angeles among many other statewide partners. The discussion focused on the Common Core State Standards.


Staff submitted revised scopes of work and budgets for two major contracts with First 5 Fresno County that will be renewed for FY 2012-2013 starting July 2012 and ending June 2013.


• MaiKa testified at the April 13th – Assembly Select Committee Hearing on the Status of Boys and Men of Color, at Fresno City Hall Chambers.

• In case you missed it, Stone Soup was featured on the KMPH Fox 26 Valley Life show as a partner of Wells Fargo.

• MaiKa and Vicky Xiong, parent leadership coordinator/volunteer attended the awards reception held by Fresno Regional Foundation Arts & Culture for the Arts & Culture grant $5,000 for summer Hmong Culture and Literacy program.

• Staff learned how to utilize locate services, create maps and charts using the free data mapping tool on the Healthy City website.

Upcoming events/activities

• May 2nd- ELA Zoo Field Trip

• May 4th – Cinco de Mayo celebration

• May 10th – FUSD Graduation Taskforce Meeting

• May 11th – Play Group last day of program

• May 18th – ELA Open House

• May 25th- Staff Meeting

• May 28th – Memorial Holiday, Office Closed

• May 30th- ELA visits the Fish Hatchery

• May 30th – First 5 Fresno County Commission Meeting/contract renewals