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Editor's note: This information is provided by the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.

For the 2013 Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center cordially invite you or your organization to participate in a national observance of this event. The theme of this year’s Heritage Month is “I Want the Wide American Earth,” chosen by the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center to highlight the poem by acclaimed Filipino American writer Carlos Bulosan.

This year’s AAPI Heritage Month celebrates the contributions of millions of AAPIs to the American story and reminds us of the unique and emerging challenges facing AAPIs as they continue to embrace the American dream. Like Bulosan’s poem, the AAPI community is aspirational, unwavering in its belief in the promise of America for all. As Bulosan so eloquently writes: 

Before the brave, before the proud builders and workers,

I say I want the wide American earth

For all the free.

I want the wide American earth for my people.

I want my beautiful land.

I want it with my rippling strength and tenderness

Of love and light and truth

For all the free.

AAPI Heritage Month is an annual call to action for the AAPI community and an opportunity for the country to see the breadth of its diversity in “e pluribus unum.” The White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders is providing state and local AAPI commissions and organizations with resources to mark AAPI Heritage Month and further develop ways to address issues facing the AAPI community, ranging from health care and language accessibility, to small business development, education, and immigration reform.

The following resources are provided to help guide your heritage month conversations:

  • AAPI Population Infographic: A demographic illustration of AAPI population growth across the United States from the year 2000 through 2010.
  • Policy Priorities Infographic: A detailed illustration of the White House AAPI Initiative’s policy priorities on health, economic and community development, civil and immigration rights, and educational opportunities.
  • Continuing Progress for the AAPI Community: An overview of recent Federal Agency accomplishments and priorities for the AAPI community.
  •  Commission Members: A list of our commissioners as an "in-person resource" across the country.