Who We Are
Hmong American Mutual Assistance Association, Inc. (HAMAA) is a non-profit community center that serves the Minneapolis Hmong community. We provide services of all types on a daily basis to anyone who walks through our doors. All of the services that we provide are available to everyone with all backgrounds and income levels seeking employment, education, citizenship, housing, youth engagement, senior/elders support, and other issues that need to be addressed. As a non-profit we realize that our Hmong community and neighbors are all striving to change for the better and we want to be a part of that change.
The organization was founded on the principle that the incoming Hmong refugees in the 1980’s had arrived with limited resources and were simply overwhelmed by the demands of the Americanized western system. By the late 2000’s, HAMAA was able to work with hundreds of refugees who needed assistance in obtaining a job, education, and citizenship. To this day, we are still striving to better serve the Hmong community and our neighbors better and we work to be a part of that change.
HAMAA has served the Hmong community in Minneapolis for more than 20 years. Established in 1990, the mission of HAMAA is to serve the Hmong American community in the city of Minneapolis and the greater Twin Cities to:
1. Promote leadership in the Hmong community;
2. Promote educational advancement for Hmong young professionals and teens;
3. Encourage Hmong refugees to be self-efficient and contributing members of their community;
4. Promote and maintain Hmong cultural heritage.
The source of life is the family. It is unitary, a closed circle, and never to be divided. From it comes the children of our future and within it resides the grandparents who brought us to new land of America. Our parents struggle mightily every day to provide the nourishment for our growth in terms physical, mental, and spiritual so that we have the opportunity to achieve our dreams individually and together.
HAMAA stands behind our families. We know that there are times in each life that events push down too hard, demands are too great and the unknown too intimidating to continue. We don't deny these aspects and we wouldn't remove them even if we could, because they are the source of personal and family development. But we know that some of our people need a bit of assistance with their problems from time to time when they feel overwhelmed.
We are people helping people. We assist in a critical moments to help those in need understand differences between the law and cultural mores. We help translate from language to language and from younger generation to older. We provide tutoring for young people preparing for school and hands on training for adults who never dreamed of the day they would face a computer. We find jobs, we teach homeowners tip, we check for safety, and we gather on outings for the children to laugh.
We talk with our Hmong Community Leaders and listen to our Grandparents to tell us of the old days. We offer the strengths of our hard working Hmong to employers and ask in return their help in providing education and job opportunities. We work with our city, county, and state elected officials and agency staffs to design our neighborhood. And we meet with our members of our culturally diverse Near Northside Minneapolis and reach our in friendship to build a stronger, more vibrant network of neighborhoods.