Mr. Hoan Dang, Board Member
Ms. Tuyet Tran,
AVA Co-founder and
Mr. Thomas Tran,
Mission and Vision
The Association of Vietnamese Americans (AVA) is dedicated to advancing the Vietnamese American community in Maryland through direct services, advocacy, and education. AVA implements three cornerstones in its approach:
(1) Empowering low-income families and seniors through direct services and providing access to government and private programs.
(2) Advocating for social and economic equality by building awareness, capacity and solidarity within the community.
(3) Unifying multiple generations of Vietnamese Americans by promoting cultural traditions, history, art and language.
Started in 1979 by a group of volunteers to help with refugee resettlement, the Association of Vietnamese Americans (AVA) is the oldest Vietnamese American community based organization in Maryland. AVA has helped refugees and immigrants of all backgrounds secure housing, find jobs, study for U.S citizenship tests, and hosted U.S. Naturalization Ceremonies. We also organized annual cultural and community events such as the Tet Lunar New Year’s Festival, the Mid-Autumn Festival, and the Health Fair.
Due to the changing needs of our diverse population, we currently provide direct services through three programs:
The Vietnamese Parenting Enrichment Project (VPEP) which empowers parents to be more involved in their children’s education;
The Golden Age Project for Seniors (GAPS) which links limited-English-proficiency seniors to health care resources that are vital to healthy aging in-place; and
The New Americans Advocacy Services (NAAS), our longest standing program which assists immigrants and refugees of all backgrounds with permanent residency and the path to citizenship. AVA is the first and only Vietnamese community organization in the nation recognized by the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), legally sanctioned to provide immigration assistance & representation.
Outside of these direct service programs, we also host three annual events to promote cultural traditions, history, art and language: the Tet Lunar New Year’s Festival, Health Fair, and Academic Awards Picnic.
For 30 years, AVA has provided culturally and linguistically appropriate direct services to the Vietnamese and other immigrant communities. Because of our reach in the community and our visibly, we also serve as a liaison for many agencies to ensure that vital information reaches our population. We attribute our success to our ability to anticipate the changing needs in the community and responding appropriately to these needs. In 2008, AVA was selected by the Harmon Foundation for inclusion in their Catalogue for Philanthropy as “one of the best small charities in the greater Washington Region.”