January 26, 2023

2023 Lunar New Year graphic

Lunar New Year – A time for Celebration, Punctured by Grief and Loss

As communities gathered to celebrate the Lunar New Year 2023 around the state, a devastating mass shooting in Monterey Park took the lives of 11 people and injured 9 others. Even as the community and nation grieved this horrific act of hate, additional lives were lost to mass shootings in Half Moon Bay and Oakland.

The feelings of devastation and horror caused by these senseless acts of mass gun violence are becoming all too familiar. Communities have the right to live without fear, to celebrate important traditions and live their full lives joyfully and publicly.  We grieve with the communities and families who lost loved ones, and will continue to anchor our work in ways that value public health, equity, and thriving, diverse communities.

2023, The Year of the Rabbit focuses on “relaxation, quietness, and contemplation.”

There are still many ways to learn about and celebrate Lunar New Year in San Diego. Check out some of the upcoming events below:

San Diego Chinese New Year Fair featuring traditional and cultural performances, crafts, a lantern parade and more. Feb. 4, 10am-7pm and Feb. 5, 10am-5pm in the Gaslamp Quarter in downtown San Diego.
Lunar New Year at San Diego Zoo, Balboa Park and Safari Park. Feb 4 and 5 9am-5pm
Lunar New Year Events at local libraries

collage of images from Project New Village

More from Innovation Initiative (i2) Grantees

MLK Day of Service Event at Mt. Hope Garden
Project New Village sowing seeds for community

On Saturday, January 21, the community showed up for a day of service at Mt. Hope Community Garden in southeastern San Diego, in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Before gloves, shovels and paint brushes were distributed we heard from a number of speakers, including Diane Moss, managing director of Project New Village (PNV), San Diego City Council President Sean Elo-Rivera (District 9), CA State Director of The Conservation Fund Steve Hobbs, and Karen Winston representing Alliance Healthcare Foundation (AHF). They spoke of the dream for a community food district and hub that has been in design and discussion for many years, and how it is finally becoming reality, thanks to an early loan from The Conservation Fund in 2019 which allowed PNV to purchase the Mt. Hope Garden property from the City of San Diego, and the most recent $1 million i2 grant to PNV from AHF which will go toward the project design and development. We were proud to be part of the weekend celebration and are looking forward to this exciting new phase of development in partnership with Project New Village.

Urban Restoration Counseling Center Shares News

shanelle johnson's instagram postLink

In a recent Instagram post, Shanelle Johnson, co-founder of Urban Restoration Counseling Center (URCC) let her friends and clients know in her own personal way that URCC had been awarded the Innovation Initiative (i2) $1 Million Challenge Grant. URCC provides mental health services to people of color by people of color, with a mission to reduce multigenerational trauma by changing the community’s understanding of mental health. They have developed a two-pronged, mutually reinforcing therapy solution that aims to disrupt and break the unhealthy cognitive and behavioral patterns creating intergenerational trauma that plague BIPOC (black indigenous people of color) communities. Listen to Shanelle HERE.

Other Partner News

North County Support for Asylum Seekers
Interfaith Community Services steps in

Nearly 1,000 adults and children seeking asylum in the United States were dropped off at transit stations in San Diego County this past December with no food, warm clothing, shelter, or money to reach their sponsor families.

In response and in partnership with local non-profits, government agencies, and community members, Interfaith Community Services has helped to create a North County Rapid Response Team that will be prepared to support asylum seekers if this situation reoccurs.

Want to help? Learn how to become a volunteer member of the Rapid Response team by emailing getinvolved@interfaithservices.org or drop off Visa gift cards, blankets, warm clothing, phone chargers, hygiene kits and transit vouchers at our 550 W. Washington location from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Click HERE to make a donation toward these essential items.   

ProBono Consulting Support
Social Venture Partners Opens its Spring Cycle

Sometimes all it takes are observations and suggestions from a skilled advisor to put you on a better path to achieving your goals. Our friends at San Diego Social Venture Partners have opened their application cycle to nonprofits that are ready to take their organization to the “next level,” through the pro bono consulting support of an experienced Social Venture Partner. February 10 is deadline to apply. Click HERE to apply.


Circulate San Diego Mixer and Report Release, Feb 16
New Report: Making the Most of the Mid-Coast

With a mission to create excellent mobility choices and vibrant, healthy neighborhoods throughout San Diego, Circulate San Diego will be celebrating the release of its newest report: Making the Most of the Mid-Coast at its February 16 membership mixer. Not a member? Register anyway and find out more.

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