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How One Grassroots Org Is Helping Chinatown Seniors

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A volunteer delivered a supply bag under social distancing guidelines. (Sophat Phea/CCED Organizer )
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Sissy Trinh is the executive director of the Southeast Asian Community Alliance, where she has worked for 18 years. When the "Safer at Home" orders went into effect, she immediately worried about the community's seniors, a cohort that tends to shop on an as-needed basis, often on foot, in the few dozen square blocks in and around Chinatown or Lincoln Heights.

So she and SEACA's board members set aside about $10,000 of their budget for pandemic relief. Normally, she said, that money would go towards events or campaigns.

"We're not a social service agency that's going to get reimbursed by the government," Trinh said. "It’s a financial risk. But the community's needs are greater than our long term stability."

As of today, the group has delivered 490 packages of supplies — everything from soap to rice.

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