Young men and women are embracing their culture with confidence, bridging family and community, and building exciting futures. They are laughing while learning. Achieving while growing. Giving back while stepping forward. From shy and tentative to confident and driven, our participants are undergoing powerful transformations in response to information, support and opportunity.


In our 18 years, we’ve seen powerful progress in the lives of young participants. Some have joined programs from preschool on, and others have arrived on the scene a bit later. But with all there is an undeniable impact as shared culture and camaraderie become a strong foundation for growth and achievement. Getting good grades. Earning scholarships and college degrees. Inspiring others as change agents and role models.

Just one of Stone Soup’s youth leadership development programs, SHE (Sisters of Hmong Empowerment) encourages confidence for education, careers, and advocacy. With a horizontal structure of leadership where everyone’s knowledge, experience and skills are valued and brought to the table, the networking among high school- and college-age alike has transformed young women from tentative outlooks to tackling even legislative issues through active projects.

“I have to be that voice and speak up for my parents and grandparents, those who can’t speak English.”

Likewise, BHE (Brothers of Hmong Empowerment) challenges and prepares participants to step out and become more active in the community. With goals to encourage higher education, leadership development and civic participation, members of the group organize workshops and become role models for their younger peers. Involvement in local projects holds dual purpose in bettering the community and building relationships with other volunteers and organizations.


These youth are staying true to their roots while engaging in the broader community. Bridging the best of both worlds, they are retaining and integrating cultural heritage as they strengthen their skills for leadership in everyday life. Like parents in our programs, these youth also learn to become advocates – sometimes on behalf of themselves and their peers, and often also on behalf of older generations who have larger barriers to language and culture. In the process, these young men and women are becoming liaisons between family, community, and even government, who increase understanding among various groups and cultures toward bringing people together.


At Stone Soup, we’re challenging young men and women to step out of their comfort zones to become more active in the community. To pave the way to better futures with their own active contributions.


Stone Soup is grateful for the many relationships and opportunities – across neighborhood, community and nation – that help us cultivate these leaders of tomorrow with such valuable involvement and experience.

San Joaquin River Parkway Trust

Southeast Asia Resource Action Center, (SEARAC)

The kNow


SHE (Sisters of Hmong Empowerment)

See what our members have to say.

BHE (Brothers of Hmong Empowerment)

A look at our recent activities and accomplishments.

Parents and Mentors

What they are saying about our participants and programs.


For support of our youth programs.

Bank of America

The California Endowment

State Farm Insurance

The Whitney Foundation