IT'S ASIAN WISCONZINE'S
16TH YEAR!!
VOL. XVI NO. 8
A
UGUST 2020
We have a new look, not only to reflect our magazine's warm focus on issues we care about, but also to highlight that season
in Wisconsin where beautiful colors of nature change to signify a future rebirth
.
On our 16th year, we're rebooting, hoping to continue our work with greater enthusiasm and lots of inspiration.
Take this new journey with us and together, let us explore news and ideas that would help us get more informed and our minds
more active.
We are dedicating this new rebirth to our beloved supporters and readers in Wisconsin and beyond!
Editor's Corner/Over a Cup of Tea
                             When a New Life Chapter Starts (Part 1 of 2)
Heidi M. Pascual
Publisher & Editor
2006 Journalist of the Year
for the State of Wisconsin
(US-SBA)
When I graduated from high school, I was fortunate to receive a four-year scholarship in college, at the top University of the Philippines. My mother,
a single mom with five kids, decided to leave for the United States almost the same time I started college, in search of the proverbial greener
pastures for all her children. She left all my younger siblings to relatives and started to work very hard to get me first. She actually planned for me to
complete only two years of college in the Philippines, then move to the US to complete a medical degree. That never happened. I fell in love to a
graduating college senior and married about two years after my mom left. My mom was shattered because her plan for me turned to nothing. She
stopped communicating with me for more than a year until I sent her a photo of my first child, a daughter named Sherry Anne.

My marriage was no bed of roses. It was like starting with nothing literally at a squatters’ area in Metro Manila. We had no appliances to make my
housework bearable. Every day, I was up at 4 a.m. to go to the market, then cook over a kerosene-fueled stove, prepare meals and wash dishes,
clean the house, wash clothes, and take care of my child. My new family also included extensions, such as a mother-in-law, a sister-in-law (who
worked as an agriculturist), and a small nephew. This situation allowed me to learn adapting to the Ilocano culture, such as its food, dialect, and
traditions. In some ways, it was good; in other ways, it was the opposite. But in total, the experience was a learning process that made me a better
person, I think.

Five years into marriage with two kids, there was no stopping me from going back to school. I felt my brain was stagnating and my self-confidence
was eroding fast, so I had to do something about it. I went back to college, this time in UP-Diliman, with the goal of earning any degree, despite
the opposition of my then husband. I remember my daily commute standing in buses, with only two pesos in my pocket, and a lunchbox with
steamed rice and fried galunggong (the poor man’s fish in my country at the time). I ended up taking Mass Communication, and two years after,
graduated with honors, with no one but my estranged father waiting to congratulate me in the audience.

Armed with a college degree, a new life chapter emerged. It was a gradual but steady rise in my new career as writer and editor. Imagine
becoming a division chief, then a deputy bureau director in the House of Representatives of the Philippines, with increased income and lots of
perks. Even when the Marcos regime lost power, the Cory government recognized my worth, for it made me an editor of the 1986 Constitution, then
an executive assistant in Malacanang Palace, and sent me for a year to the U.S. Congress as a congressional fellow to train for another
congressional post.

My whole life changed from being a simple housewife to an emerging leader in government, managing several employees whose expertise was
in documentation, editing manuscripts, and printing books that eventually became official records of the Philippine Congress. That chapter of my
life helped build my self-confidence big time, for I was able to raise my children well (even with minimum support from a husband whose work
required him to be away from home often and mostly for months at length.) --
READ MORE
UW–Madison establishes free, campus-wide COVID-19 testing to support campus reopening
What Women Need in
Response to the
Coronavirus
Pandemic
The coronavirus pandemic is an unprecedented public health and
economic crisis. Policy solutions in response to the pandemic’s
devastating impacts on health and economic security must account for
the unique needs of women and families, especially women of color.
Women are more likely to be on the front lines of coronavirus response
and exposure: 52 percent of essential workers are women, and women
are the majority of the workers in jobs that the federal government has
designated as essential, including the vast majority of hospital
workers, home health aides, and grocery store cashiers. Women also
bear the brunt of unpaid caregiving responsibilities for children and
family members at home. Furthermore, the health care system has
historically underserved women—a fact that the coronavirus pandemic
has exacerbated: Women are less likely than men to be able to
withstand unexpected costs, health coverage has frequently not been
comprehensive enough to meet women’s needs, and the health care
providers women rely upon are frequently underfunded. --  
READ MORE
When I was young, I always planned for tomorrow. I thought if I pursued the things that I planned to do, then my
goals would be achieved. But as I grew older, I realized not all plans materialize. Circumstances change, many of
which I cannot control, until I began to accept the fact that I cannot be certain of what the future will bring.
Sometimes, I feel plans are of no use, especially if they are long-ranged, too far-off, or if they require resources
other than myself. Now, I believe that the Supreme Being up there created the paths for me to choose from, but
the journey towards the outcomes as well as the outcomes themselves depended largely on my own, using the
gifts up in my head and inside my heart.
Rainbow Project
Healing during a Pandemic
By Jonathan Gramling

Until the middle of March, The Rainbow Project was staying busy providing
counseling and therapy to approximately 1,000 children who had been victims
of some form of abuse or trauma. Established in 1979, Rainbow has an
experienced, capable and compassionate staff who were working with the
children — and often times members of their families and extended families —
in person at their offices on E. Washington Avenue. For the most part, they
provided in-person services that could often times end with a reassuring hug.

But when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Rainbow temporarily came grinding to a
halt as it adjusted to a new normal and changed the way they do business
before they could once again provide their essential services within a virtual
world.

“You would think it is hard to learn new ways, Sharyl Kato, Rainbow’s director,
said about the staff. “But I think because there is such mastery at what they do,
they are really agile in what they do to be able to in a very quick period of time
— at the most a month — adapt. I remember in mid-March when we closed, we
were up and running in April. We developed a 16-page Tele-Health policy
before we could really use it. To me, you can have the very best curricula and
the very best approaches theoretically, but it is really the vehicle, the
therapist, to make sure that it works. And so, those relations that are so
critical to how you do that via Tele-Health.”

In a sign of the times, one of Kato’s six-year-old clients hugged the monitor
after her session. While the transition was easiest with their existing clients, it’
s harder to form those close, personal connections when you never meet them
in person.

Kato emphasized that all of us can be exposed to mental health stressors due
to our isolation. But it can be especially intense for people who have
experienced trauma and abuse.

“It’s going to do a lot of triggering,” Kato said.  --
READ MORE
Trump’s Coronavirus
Survival Strategy: Blame
China
By Melanie Hart and Michael Fuchs
President Donald Trump is failing to provide the leadership Americans need
during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the death toll of Americans
succumbing to the novel coronavirus rises every day. But instead of doing
everything they can to save as many Americans as possible, President
Trump and some of his supporters in Congress and the media are already
rolling out the first stage of their coronavirus cover-up campaign: blame
China.

Beijing’s failure to act decisively when the virus first emerged in
November 2019 put the entire world at risk. When Chinese President Xi
Jinping first heard about the crisis, he had an opportunity to immediately
share that news with the world and bring in external experts to help Beijing
stop the contagion before it spread beyond China’s borders. Instead,
Chinese officials initially sought to suppress information about the crisis.
Once the news got out, Beijing delayed giving the World Health
Organization access to Wuhan. Even today, Beijing still appears to be
underreporting the nation’s cases and fatalities.  --  
READ MORE
By Nora Ellmann, Robin
Bleiweis, and Shilpa Phadke
2020 Outstanding Asian American High School
Graduates of Dane County
From The Capital City Hues' Row of Excellence 2020

EAST HIGH SCHOOL
* A National Honor Society member, Krishna Kashian has explored a
broad array of interests while reaching the peaks of academic
excellence. Krishna competed in varsity soccer, explored the business
world through DECA, served others through Interact and represented
student interests on the student congress. Away from school, Krishna
has enjoyed being a counselor at the Armenian Summer Camp and
helping out at church picnics. Krishna’s excellence earned him
Questbridge National College March Finalist honors. Krishna will be
studying at UW-Madison this fall.
* Kunga Lodoe has had his sights set on a college career throughout his
four years at East High. Kunga gained the skills necessary to compete
on the collegiate level through the UW PEOPLE Program and Gear Up.
He was also active in the United Asian Club. During his free time, Kunga
enjoys cleaning and maintaining the Deer Park Monastery. He has been
on the honor roll and has earned numerous awards from Gear Up. Kunga
is headed to UW-Madison this fall.
* A National Honor Society member, Quynh Mai has been honing her
academic and leadership skills at East High. She has sat on the student
congress and helped mentor other students through Level Up. Her
concern for others carries into the community where she has helped out
with elementary school dances and carnivals. She also passed out
water and encouragement at the Madison Half Marathon. Quynh will be
attending UW-Madison this fall.
* While preparing for the collegiate level, Phetsana Souvannasone has
been extending a helping hand to assist other students in reaching
college as well. Phetsana has gained the skills to compete on the
collegiate level through the UW PEOPLE Program. At the same time, she
has been a mentor for the Level Up Program. In her free time, Phetsana
enjoys volunteering at The River Food Pantry. --
READ MORE
By Kelly April Tyrrell
In the early days of the pandemic, when labs across the
country were struggling to meet the demand for testing
supplies and materials, the Wisconsin Veterinary
Diagnostic Laboratory immediately took action. The state’s
leading animal health lab provided COVID-19 test kits,
scarce materials, equipment and training to the Wisconsin
State Laboratory of Hygiene, which performs COVID-19
testing for high-priority patients statewide.
Now, the two labs are coming together again in support of
University of Wisconsin–Madison efforts to provide free
COVID-19 testing to the entire campus community. The goal is to identify infections, isolate and care for those
who are sick, and limit the spread of the disease as campus moves forward with a modified re-opening plan.

By the beginning of the fall semester on September 2, UW–Madison will offer no-cost testing to all students,
faculty and staff, with some testing set to begin in early August.

The full campus plan also includes regular screening of UW Housing residents and employees and
surveillance testing among volunteer groups of students and employees from representative areas of
campus. This approach will allow campus to rapidly identify and isolate potential cases, including among
people who may not exhibit symptoms of COVID-19, helping to curb disease transmission.
Testing will augment other UW–Madison efforts to keep the community safe, including a face covering
requirement in all indoor and some outdoor locations; changes to ensure physical distancing; reduced density
in campus spaces, including classrooms; and enhanced cleaning protocols.. --
READ MORE