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The Southeast Asian Coalition of Central MA is the only organization of its kind in the region, and it was built from the ground up by and for Southeast Asian immigrants and refugees in Worcester. One of those was Tuyet Tran, then a young social worker in the city who saw an unmet need.
Tran stepped away from the organization for 15 years after she co-founded it in 2001, but she is now back and at the helm to take it into the future.
Tran wants SEACMA’s members to not just come to the organization for services, but to use it as a jumping off point to contribute to the economy and to businesses in Central Massachusetts.
The organization moved into a new space on Tran’s first day as executive director, a step that signals its next phase. Tran’s SEACMA will be not only a resource, but a true cultural center for Southeast Asians.
While elevating cultural experiences for the Southeast Asian population, SEACMA has a history of extending its reach to welcome and support other immigrant and refugee communities, something Tran will prioritize in her tenure.
How should professionals best use the power they wield? “The more business professionals share resources and connect to help community organizations, the better it is for everyone. Our community has many people struggling with finding affordable housing, food, and accessing health/mental health services. When businesses and large healthcare systems partner with grassroots community centers and others, the impact is so much greater.”
Green thumb: Tran’s family and friends call her a plant whisperer for her knack to revive plants that have seen better days.
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