Hmong

Valley Writers Read
11:12 am
Wed June 4, 2014

Burlee Vang's 'Polaroids of Tom' On Valley Writers Read

This week on Valley Writers Read, author Burlee Vang reads his story “Polaroids of Tom.”  The story is about the author's younger brother Tom who was born with a fatal deformity.  He lived for only a week.   And then we learn that when his mother went to get a re-fill for the medicine she'd been taking, she was told  it was the wrong medicine.  So we're left to wonder if the medicine she'd been taking had anything to do with the baby's demise.

Read more
Valley Writers Read
3:30 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

Joel Pickford's "Soul Calling" On Valley Writers Read

Credit Heyday Books

This week on Valley Writers Read, Joel Pickford reads from his book “Soul Calling, a Photographic Journey Through the Hmong Diaspora.”  The author gives us a great deal of information about the Hmong community of Central California.  He tells us about their lives in prison camps after the Vietnam War, and how many escaped to Thailand and then came to America.

Read more
Valley Edition
1:05 pm
Tue February 4, 2014

Valley Edition Feb. 4: Drought, Hmong Youth And Religion, Thoughts On Trail Preservation

This week on Valley Edition we talk about the issues of drought, changing culture among Hmong youth, the health of public forests and more.

Leading the program, Moore speaks with Lois Henry of the Bakersfield Californian and Kerman farmer Paul Betancourt about the drought, farmers fallowing fields, well drilling and more.

Read more
Commentary
11:24 am
Tue February 4, 2014

Commentary: Hmong Girls Feel Pressure To Be "Thick"

Chonny Vang, 15, is a sophomore at Edison High School.
Credit The kNOw Youth Media

Popular culture and traditional values often differ when it comes to perspective on healthy weight for girls. In this commentary, Edison High School Student Mai Chong Vang tells her story of self-acceptance while belonging to cultures that promote opposing ideal body types and how Hmong and American perspectives have challenged her to accept who she is.

---

My name is Mai Chong Vang, but I go by Chonny.

I’m from East Central Fresno, my family is Hmong and we practice Shamanism.

Read more
Community
11:13 am
Tue February 4, 2014

"Who Am I?" Hmong Youth Face Choices Between Religion And Culture

Thousands of youth flocked to the Fresno Fair Grounds for Hmong New Year. #Iamhmong
Credit Ezra David Romero / Valley Public Radio

The question of “Who am I?” is a normal insecurity for teens and it’s a no brainer that Hmong youth in Central California would face a similar struggle. They’re grappling with the tribal religions of their refugee parents, other faiths encountered in the U.S., and the pressures of conforming to popular culture. Some have clung to the tribal ways of their ancestors, while others have lost faith altogether. Valley Public Radio Reporter Ezra David Romero visits with a group of Fresno Hmong high school students to bring you a glimpse into their struggle.

Read more
Environment
9:08 am
Tue February 4, 2014

Voices Of The Drought: Small Farmer Chia Lee

Chia Lee and his brother, Teng Lee, are concerned about the drought's impact on their Parlier farm.
Rebecca Plevin Valley Public Radio

Starting this week, Valley Public Radio will share an occasional series, called Voices of the Drought. First up, is the story of small farmer Chia Lee.

Back in Laos, Chia Lee grew rice and corn on a mountainside. He never worried about rain there.

“We’re waiting for the monsoon rain in Laos, once a year, so we don’t worry about anything,” Lee says.

Read more
Arts & Culture
10:23 am
Tue July 2, 2013

Fadiman: In 'Spirit,' "The Villain is Cultural Misunderstanding"

When author Anne Fadiman first visited Merced in the late 1980s, she says more than 10,000 Hmong refugees and their children were living there. At that time, about one out of every six people living in Merced was Hmong, she says.

The hospitals were overwhelmed by the new refugee population, she recalls. Medical interpretation was not legally mandated at that time, and Merced Community Medical Center had just one Hmong interpreter. It often fell to the hospital janitor, or a family’s young child, to translate sensitive medical information to a patient.

Read more
Community
10:55 am
Tue June 18, 2013

Valley Public Radio Launches Public Radio Book Club

'The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down' is the first book in Valley Public Radio's Homegrown book club.

Today we're introducing Homegrown, Valley Public Radio's book club about the Central Valley.

We will read books that shine a light on distinct issues, communities and experiences in the region. We'll air in-depth interviews with authors and panel discussions with local experts about the books. You can listen for the segments on Valley Edition and see online features at KVPR.org.

We also want to hear your questions and comments about the book. You can connect with us through Facebook, Twitter or e-mail, and our website, KVPR.org. Just search "Homegrown."

Read more
Health
9:07 am
Tue April 23, 2013

Valley's Need For Medical Interpreters Could Increase With Health Law

Experts predict there will be an even greater demand for medical interpreters when the Affordable Care Act is implemented in 2014. (file photo)
Credit Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

When Mailu Lor translates for a Hmong patient, she can’t just repeat the doctor’s orders, word for word. That’s because the Hmong language often doesn’t contain advanced medical terminology, or names for diseases, like diabetes.

“Hmong language is a very difficult language,” Lor said. “We don’t have any dictionary for medical terminology.”

Read more
Agriculture
9:55 am
Tue April 2, 2013

Reedley Farmer Goes 'Farm to School' With Strawberries

Pao Saephan is the first small farmer to sell his produce directly to Fresno Unified School District.
Rebecca Plevin Valley Public Radio

Pao Saephan crouches down in his sun-drenched field. He cups a red jewel in his hand.

In a few more days, his strawberries will be fully ripe. He’ll pick them once they are garnet-colored from stem to tip.

“We want all the strawberries, to be full ripe, full flavor, with 100 percent sugar in them,” says Saephan.

In the past, he would sell the fresh berries at his roadside stand - called Sam’s Strawberry Patch. It’s located at the intersection of Manning Avenue and I Street in Reedley.

Read more
Local Books
1:45 pm
Tue September 18, 2012

Photographer Joel Pickford Documents Hmong Refugees in 'Soul Calling'

Soul Calling: A Photographic Journey through the Hmong Diaspora, by photographer Joel Pickford
Credit Heyday Books

Local photographer Joel Pickford's new book "Soul Calling: A Photographic Journey Through The Hmong Diaspora" is an intimate look into the world of the Hmong people.

Read more
Valley Edition
11:34 am
Tue September 18, 2012

On Valley Edition: Chocolate Milk Makeover; Delta Study; Joel Pickford

Credit Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Historical Ecology Study / San Francisco Estuary Institute-Aquatic Science Center / California Department of Fish and Game

Chocolate Milk Gets a Big Makeover
Chocolate milk is getting a big remix at schools in Fresno and beyond, as part of a effort to fight childhood obesity. A new formula developed by Producers Dairy for Fresno Unified is getting good reviews from both kids and nutrition experts, thanks to low fat and lower amounts of sugar than before. Nutritionist Sara Bosse also joins us to talk about efforts to improve school breakfast and lunch nutrition, and why 16 percent of kids in Fresno Unified says they've never even tasted traditional milk. 

Read more
Arts & Culture
6:39 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

Hmong writers celebrate with new literary anthology

How Do I Begin, a new anthology of work by Hmong American writers.

It was like a coming out party for the newest group of writers to join the literary world. Amid the bright lights of Fresno’s Tower Theatre, an event billed as the official launch of the book “How Do I Begin” was held.

Fresno writer Mas Masumoto called the publishing of the anthology of poetry and stories written Hmong-Americans in the Central Valley a historic moment. “I think tonight is historic because it’s a community capturing their voices, and the voices are allowed to be passed down through story, especially in a book form.”

Read more
Valley Edition
6:20 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

On Valley Edition: California Dream Act; Child Abuse; Hmong Writers

This week on Valley Edition we talk about the state's new law, the "California Dream Act" which would allow students who came to the country as children illegally access to financial aid at state colleges and universities. We also hear about the link between the recession and an increase in cases of child abuse. And we close our program with a story on the Hmong American Writers Circle, and a new literary anthology called "How Do I Begin."

Read more
Hidden World Of Girls
7:57 pm
Fri May 27, 2011

Family History: The General, His Sisters And Me

Military officials salute the casket of Gen. Vang Pao in Fresno, Calif.
Lianne Milton for NPR

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:24 am

As an American teenager, whenever I asked grown-ups about the Vietnam War, few wanted to discuss it. As an adult, it was just as hard to talk about the war. That's why I never told friends and neighbors about my family's history.

You see, the Vietnam War took place in my family's backyard. My family lived in northeastern Laos, in Nong Het, right on the border with Vietnam. When the CIA needed an ally, they found a charismatic, passionate young man not afraid to die.

That man was my great-uncle, the late Gen. Vang Pao.

Read more