A Different Mirror: Community Building & Resilience in Seattle’s Chinatown-International District

Chinatown-International District is (CID) one of Seattle’s last remaining cultural gems and holds
so much more than what meets the eye. Our community is filled with residents from around the
world, diverse businesses, and members who deeply care about and help create the
neighborhoods unique past, present, and future. The CID’s rich legacy bursts with potential and
continues to fight to exist as a healthy community with cultural dignity.
 
Continuing the legacy of Bob Santos, Interim CDA will produce a mini-doc series to honor our
rich history and uplift and advocate for the communitys presence to inspire, inform and guide the
future of the neighborhood.

Watch our first episode here: A Different Mirror: Kau Kau BBQ

 


News

We loved seeing this story in the Seattle Times today.  InterIm CDA fully support the Friends of Inscape in their journey towards preserving the INS building as a space that is permanently affordable to artists in the Chinatown-International District. The CID faces profound and unprecedented issues of gentrification and displacement fueled by the City’s growth and redevelopment. We welcome Friends of Inscape to the movement for a CID where working class people, small family-owned businesses, and community organizations can all thrive.


I-5 Activation Project

We would like to share information that was completed in 2021 with our I-5 Steering Committee on the I-5 Activation Project.


Uncle Bob's Place Invitational Call for Artists

 

Uncle Bob’s Place Invitational Call for Artists: Balcony Railing Panels and Temporary Mural Artwork

Applications Due Monday, November 29, 2021, 11:59 pm Pacific Time

Uncle Bob’s Place Art Committee (UBP-AC) aspires to engage a diverse range of up to 17 artists from a variety of media to conceptualize and create fabrication-ready artwork for 12 residential balconies and 5 mural artworks at Uncle Bob’s Place (UBP).

Introduction, Uncle Bob’s Place

Uncle Bob’s Place is a mixed-use housing project being developed by InterIm CDA (https://interimcda.org/) in Seattle’s Chinatown International District (CID). It is named after our beloved and distinguished community leader, Bob Santos (1934–2016), and continues a vision that celebrates an ongoing sense of community, self-determination, stability, and vibrancy. Public Art at UBP will lend a sense of meaning, beauty, and joy; and will uplift the story of Uncle Bob and the importance of community and be an integrated part of the building.

InterIm CDA is grateful to the Bob Santos family for entrusting us with his name and the awesome privilege of honoring and carrying forward his legacy at Uncle Bob’s Place.

Scheduled for completion in early 2023, the building will include:

  • 126 low-income units that provide permanent homes for families with children, elders, and others;
  • A reimagined Bush Garden Restaurant, a cherished legacy business and Uncle Bob’s favorite karaoke bar;
  • The Bob Santos Community Room, a space for organizing, education, events, and more;
  • A residential Community Room

 

Guiding Principles for Public Art at Uncle Bob’s Place

Art at Uncle Bob’s Place will inspire activism and advocacy to preserve and protect the people and culture of the CID community, centered on a social justice narrative. It will stand as a reminder that each of us can make a difference. At its heart, this effort seeks to pay homage to Uncle Bob, the person, by carrying forward both his and the community’s legacy.

  • The power of storytelling, community organizing, and solidarity across ethnicities
  • Person to person relationships as the cornerstone for community organizing
  • The power of solidarity across ethnicities
  • The importance of mentoring future generations of activists
  • How community history lives to inform and inspire today’s actions and provide clarity for envisioning the future
  • Inspire and foster ongoing activism and advocacy for the CID community
  • Maintaining the CID as a home for low income, elderly, immigrants, refugees, workers, and other marginalized groups
  • Recognize the international connections of local social justice struggles
  • Amplifying personal and historic connections to the CID

 

Artists are invited to apply to both (2) projects.

1) Metal Balcony Railing Panel Artwork

Uncle Bob’s Place Art Committee (UBP-AC) aspires to engage a diverse range of up to 12 artists from a variety of ethnic backgrounds, aesthetic direction, and working media to conceptualize and create fabrication-ready artwork for 12 residential balconies at Uncle Bob’s Place (UBP). These balconies will be made of cut aluminum panels, all made in a red color.

Aside from the themes and goals for all the public artwork, specific themes for the balcony railing artwork include:

  • The power of storytelling of the history of the CID
  • Reflect layers of migration, history and diversity of those who inhabit and have inhabited the neighborhood
  • Personal and historic connections to the CID shown through cut metal images
  • The international connections of local social justice struggles
  • Engaging with community, affiliated organizations for inspiration about the artwork

 

THIS PROJECT HAS AN ACCELERATED TIMELINE AND WILL REQUIRE A VERY FAST ENGAGEMENT AND PRODUCTION PROCESS.

 

Project Rendering:

UBP Balcony Scope of Work:

Selected Artists Will:

  • Complete and submit a memorandum of understanding before work begins
  • Research, develop, and present visual concepts related to desired themes of UBP
  • Work in collaborative dialogue with the other selected artists and UBP-AC
  • Work within the technical requirements for cut metal and safety codes
  • Submit fabrication-ready artwork as a two-dimensional black and white drawing/digital file of the correct proportions/scale for each balcony as required by deadlines
  • Provide a final artist statement related to final creation, and optional contact information (web address, social handles, etc) for publicity related to the UBP
  • Be paired with a community organization that was important to Uncle The organization will provide a “creative brief” containing inspirational stories, words, images from which to draw.

Material Constraints:

  • Material is perforated/cut metal, coated in a red powder coating
  • UBP-AC will work with one fabricator to maintain production consistency
  • There will be 2 sizes of balcony Though final sizes will be confirmed for selected artists, the approximate sizes are as follows: Street-facing panels will be 3’-6” tall by 7’-10” wide or 7’-0” wide. Side railings will be 3’-6 1/2” tall by 2-1” wide or 1’-6” wide., depending on the location. (Final dimensions subject to change)
  • Maximum opening or negative space in balcony material is 4 inches, per
  • Art is subject to review by the International Special Review District Board (ISRD)

 

Timeline (dates subject to change):

November 29, 2021          Artist applications due

December 6, 2021            Panel selects artists

January 15, 2022               Selected artists submit initial designs March 1, 2022      Final designs due to fabricators

Early Summer 2022          Anticipated balcony installation

 

2) Mural Artworks

A 2-part project to create 1 of 5 images that will make up a large temporary exterior mural and will also be made into an interior artwork for the elevator lobby of each of 5 residential floors. The 2 parts will be created using digital reproductions of the same image, but at differing scales. The temporary large exterior mural will include a combined image of the 5 artists’ work, while each of the elevator lobbies are interior and will include only a single artist’s work, of a much smaller scale. Artists will be selected for one of the 5 opportunities that will include full color images expressing the ideas of justice, equality and cultural diversity, all values very important to Uncle Bob and his lifelong activism.

Artists will be asked to collaborate/coordinate with each other to develop “connections” between the images. These connections might be a visual through line, or where images might connect with adjacent images in some way, to allow the combined temporary mural to have cohesion as a whole, while maintaining the aesthetic personalities of each selected artist and artwork.

The scope of the project is to create artwork of a specific proportion that may be digitally reproduced at 2 different scales, either directly on the computer as a digital file or one that could be scanned or otherwise digitized.

Production of the mural and the work for the residential floors will be undertaken by the project.

 

PROJECT ILLUSTRATION:

The anticipated timeline for project completion is Summer 2022. Because the production lead times are still in flux, schedules might change:

UBP Murals Scope of Work:

Selected Artists Will:

  • Complete and submit a memorandum of understanding before work begins
  • Research, develop, and present visual concepts related to desired themes of UBP
  • Work in collaborative dialogue with the other selected artists and UBP-AC
  • Submit fabrication-ready artwork as a drawing/digital file of the correct proportions/scale as required by deadlines
  • Provide a final artist statement related to final creation, and optional contact information (web address, social handles, etc) for publicity related to the UBP

 

Timelines:

November 29, 2021          Artist applications due

December 6, 2021            Panel selects artists

April 15, 2022                   Selected artists submit initial designs June 1, 2022 Final designs due to fabricators

Late summer 2022            Anticipated installation

BUDGET FOR EACH PROJECT:

Each selected artist will receive $3,000 Artist/Design Fee upon successful completion and delivery of project deliverables.

  • $1,000 artist deposit with a signed contract
  • $1,000 final design to fabricators
  • $1,000 written statements, and public relation things all done

 

How to Apply:

Apply here: https://form.jotform.com/212857326539161 Eligibility:

Artists working in Washington State and Oregon, 18 years and older, are invited to apply.

 

Online Application to include:

  1. Artist contact information with email, phone, and pronouns
  2. Application Please limit your response to approximately 3500 characters or fewer. Please address:
    1. How your creative practice relates to public art themes of Uncle Bob’s
    2. Relevant past community-based work
    3. Your personal involvement and/or connection with the C-ID community and community organizations
    4. Your general approach to this project
    5. Biographic information: briefly describe yourself and your artistic accomplishments
  3. Submit up to 6 images (and no fewer than 4) of relevant work
  4. Image identification list including title, year created, medium, commission amount (if applicable), and brief
  5. Indicate if you are applying for the Balcony project, the Mural or Please indicate whether you are able to meet the fast deadline for the Balcony project.

 

If you are unable to use the application form, please email us (UncleBobsArt@gmail.com) to make arrangements.

 

Selection Criteria:

Artists will be evaluated based on their artistic expression and how their work relates to the themes and focus of art at Uncle Bob’s Place. No previous experience with public art is necessary. UBP-AC will prioritize artists who reflect (through their work or lived experiences) the layered history of diverse peoples who have and continue to inhabit the CID and other historic communities of color in the greater Puget Sound area.

 

Artists must agree to meet all production deadlines.

What to Prepare Before Starting Your Online Application:

Written Material:

  • Write and edit your written statements before starting the online The online application will NOT save working drafts. Note character counts.

 

Photographic Material:

  • Check your digital images for clarity
  • We suggest not submitting more than two images of the same Composite images are not recommended.
  • Label photographic files with your last name and the submission image For example, Santos_1.jpg; Santos_2.png
  • Provide an image identification list including title, year created, medium, commission amount (if applicable), and brief description as a low-resolution

.PDF file.

  • Minimum width of any side is 1000 pixels
  • File size limit is 10 MG per image
  • The committee is not seeking sketches or final design ideas with this We wish to see your overall style and themes.

 

While the call above is our intention for the projects, the Uncle Bob’s Place Art Committee reserves the option to select fewer than the anticipated number of artists or to alter the intended scope of the project.

 

Uncle Bob’s Place Art Committee Members are here to support your successful application submission. Email UncleBobsArt@gmail.com with any questions. Include “Uncle Bob’s Place Balconies” in the subject line.


Domestic Violence Housing First: A Celebration of What We're Learning!

Please watch the recording of the event, Domestic Violence Housing First: A Celebration of What We’re Learning! You can also visit the Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence’s YouTube channel.
InterIm Cda is thankful to have joined the event in April. Thank you to Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation!


InterIm CDA Denounces Anti-Asian Violence

We, at InterIm CDA, are deeply saddened to hear of the horrific events in Atlanta, GA that left 8 people murdered including 6 members of the Asian Pacific Island community. Our deepest condolences to the victims’ families and friends.

As attacks on the API community increase, we need to highlight the depth of white supremacy and racism that humanized the shooter as “having a bad day” while framing the massage parlors as “temptation” to “eliminate”. This sexualization of Asian women is even more abhorrent in the light of the recent Stop AAPI Hate report that more than twice as many women are victims than men. We stand against misogyny and the stigma of earning a living in massage parlors. We respect all forms of work that our community engages in.

We want to lift up the sentiments aptly expressed by our sister organizations:

If you experience or witness a hate crime, please contact our friends at CISC and tell them about it by calling or emailing as follows:

Cantonese-粵語/English: (425) 240-5825

Mandarin-普通话/English: (206) 393-2110

Russian/English: (425) 326-9497

Spanish-Español/English: (425) 598-5436

Vietnamese/English: (206) 235-4372

Email: antihb@cisc-seattle.org

If you are in need of mental health support, please contact ACRS: (206) 695-7600.

We, as a social justice organization, need to support our Brown and Black brothers and sisters. We need to unite the ‘beloved community’ against all forms of violence, white supremacy and xenophobia.

Once again, our deepest condolences to these victims’ families and friends.


InterIm CDA - Uncle Bob's Place Virtual Groundbreaking Event 2/25/2021

Thank you to everyone who spoke at and attended the recent Uncle Bob’s Place Virtual Groundbreaking Event!

Please enjoy the video from the event.


InterIm CDA - Holiday Gift Bags to Residents!

In the beginning of the year, InterIm began grocery deliveries to low-income senior residents and their families once a week to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic. It began with a GoFundMe page and weekly volunteers from all over the Seattle area, and then turned into a partnership between InterIm, other non-profit organizations that were also participating in grocery deliveries, and Asian Counseling and Referral Services' food bank.

For the holidays, we decided to get together to offer gift cards to grocery stores Uwajimaya, Safeway, or Viet-Wah, depending on the residents' choice. To go along with the gift cards, we put together a gift bag with freshly baked cookies, hand lotion, hand sanitizer, and tea bags.

Enjoy these pictures of some of the InterIm team that put the holiday gift bags together!

Carmen Hom (Employment Navigation Coordinator), Vincent Kwan (Employment Navigation Manager), Derek Lum (Equitable Development Policy Analyst) assembling gift bags for various buildings

Freshly baked cookies with tags that included ingredients!

Tom Im (Deputy Director) on his way to make his delivery

Carol Xie (Resource Development & Marketing Manager) 

Another batch on their way out!

Alec Mac (Employment Navigation Assistant) wheeling boxes of gift bags out

Each bag was hand delivered to each resident - they were pleasantly surprised and thrilled to receive their bags!

Connect with us:
Instagram: @interim_cda; @dannywoogarden
Facebook: @interim_cda; @dannywoogarden

InterIm CDA - Laptops Provided to Low Income and Homeless Communities

Through the King County "Digital Equity for Adults with Barriers to Access and Services" grant, the Employment Navigation team at InterIm was able to secure over 100 laptops to support seniors, limited-English proficient, unemployed, and/or homeless individuals, and an additional 22 hotspots for those that did not have access to internet.

Abby Frias (Sustainability & Education Coordinator), Carmen Hom (Employment Navigation Coordinator), Silver Ly (Housing Stability Case Manager), Lizzy Baskerville (Environmental Design & Sustainability Manager), Alec Mac (Employment Navigation Assistant), Vincent Kwan (Employment Navigation Manager), Carol Xie (Resource Development & Marketing Manager), Renae Figuriera (Family Navigator) on the day of laptop delivery

The grant was approved for 21 organizations across the county, including InterIm CDA. The purpose of the grant was to provide individuals and/or families with digital services to "navigate online resources for health, economic, or other basic needs" who would otherwise not have access to them in an effort to help recover from the vast impacts of COVID-19 (King County).

Alec & Vincent organizing laptops to be delivered to residents

On the morning of December 16, 2020, InterIm staff gathered and formed teams of two to deliver laptops to different apartment buildings to residents that were approved to receive one. Upon arrival, the recipients were told in advance of our scheduled arrival time and signed off to confirm receipt of their new device(s), accepting with gratitude.

Vincent, socially distanced, instructing staff on laptop deliveries and assigning everyone to teams of two

Digital Literacy flyers, with both English and Chinese, that were given to the residents to go along with their laptops

Lizzy organizing and prepping the laptops to be delivered to Rex Apartments' residents

Silver and Renae finishing up their deliveries - they even got to support local restaurant, Tai Tung!

Carol and Lizzy preparing for their last delivery of the day.

Alec during the middle of a delivery

We are working hard to provide services and resources for the communities that we serve, especially during these times. We are confident that the laptops and hotspots that were delivered will help their recipients in their journey to finding employment and other resources, which is now more important than ever.

Thank you to all our supporters that continue to support our work!

Connect with us:
Instagram: @interim_cda; @dannywoogarden
Facebook: @interim_cda; @dannywoogarden

InterIm CDA - Coming to the End of 2020

This year, our organization, as well as the rest of the world, has faced some drastic changes and challenges. As an organization, we have learned to navigate these changes by sticking together and remembering our mission and commitment to all immigrants, refugees, and low income communities.
Even though we have not been able to hold events and interact with everyone as we used to, we are making the most of it.
In the early months of this year, Community Engagement Manager, Henry Liu, started a GoFundMe to provide groceries to the various CID residents. It soon surpassed the initial goal, and we were able to get even more groceries in bulk from local grocery stores. We had the help of many, many, many volunteers during this process. After a few months, we started partnering with our friends at the Asian Counseling and Referral Services (ACRS), who help us package hundreds of bags per week for us to deliver to different households in the neighborhood.
On top of this, we have helped senior residents fill out the 2020 Census and even register to vote! We had a great turnout this year and it was great to see the residents excited and engaged in their civic duties.
The Danny Woo Community Garden has also seen some changes. We have seen an increase in crops being utilized in the garden, and have even heard from gardeners that their groups have helped them during this time. It gives them time to be outside, exercise, and even helps them grow food for their families. Lizzy Baskerville, Environmental Design & Sustainability Manager, quotes gardener Deng Xia Tang, "Very happy because [otherwise] there is nothing to do. My husband labors in the plot. At home we feel very lonely but we go to the garden to enrich our lives. We have this plot to have fun.”
You may have even see Matt Chan's video of the Danny Woo Community Garden, which honors the annual Pig Roast that was unfortunately canceled this year.
Our Employment Navigation department has also been hard at work during this time. Employment Navigation Managers, Vincent Kwan and Carmen Hom, have continuously helped community members file for unemployment or find jobs, which are both especially important during this time. They work tirelessly each week to check up on clients and have even set up several events and workshops!
InterIm has also been a part of the I-5 Steering Committee, which is working to revitalize the freeway underpass on Jackson & King St. in an effort to create more open space and a sense of public safety, as well as better connect Little Saigon to the rest of the CID neighborhood. Be sure to join the upcoming Community Meeting on December 16, 2020 at 4:00pm!
Another way that InterIm has been engaging with senior residents is by leading weekly cooking and exercise classes. Community Engagement Manager, Henry, and Nutritional Education & Food Security Manager, Eliza Guan, purchase ingredients for dozens of senior residents each week and hand deliver them. Based on the ingredients for the week, each resident comes up with their own dish and shares what they made with other participants in a WeChat group chat. From these group chats, the residents have made friends with each other and keep each other company even on non-cooking class days!
Our administrative team has also been hard at work. Administrative Assistant, Lynette Seigafo, and accounting team Anca Bolden and Shegaw Masresha, have been hard at work at the InterIm office making sure that everything behind-the-scenes is seamless and that the rest of the team can do their jobs effectively and by the book. They truly are the backbone of InterIm CDA.
There are several other departments that have not been captured in this video, but deserve the recognition just as much - Housing Services, Real Estate Development, Equitable Development Policy Advocacy, Wilderness Inner-City Leadership Development (WILD) youth program, Homelessness Prevention, and Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault services have all done amazing work for the communities that they serve.
While this year has been both challenging and different, we at InterIm are grateful for each other and our community. We continue to do our work as best as we can, under the circumstances, and uphold our commitment to the community. At this time, your support means the world to us and we cannot thank you enough. Please consider to continue supporting us during this time so that we can continue our neighborhood advocacy efforts.
Thank you all - we are excited for 2021 and all that it may bring!
Connect with us:
Instagram: @interim_cda; @dannywoogarden
Facebook: @interim_cda; @dannywoogarden