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Need: Center For Empowering Refugees and Immigrants of the East Bay seeking funds for youth program

CERI has been serving the Cambodian population for over five years.
The youth program has been running without funds for four years and is now in need of financial support in order to keep the doors open for the youth.
CERI is a beautiful center that gives the Cambodian community a place to seek help for basic needs as well as offers innovative approaches to healing that are cultural adaptive to the Cambodian population.
Please offer your support and allow this incredible place to thrive.
Here is the letter that the clinical director just sent out to the supporters of CERI.

September 25, 2009

Dear community members, family and friends:

As you know, for the last four years a small group of us have been building a holistic mental health community for Cambodian refugees and their families: the Center for Empowering Refugees and Immigrants (CERI). CERI’s adult clients survived the terrors of the Khmer Rouge and lived in horrendous conditions in refugee camps before coming to the United States. We are honored to be able to provide a safe and supportive environment in which they can come together as a community and heal.

We realize that part of the healing relies on the well-being of the children and youth of our clients. Living in high crime and poor neighborhoods, many young Cambodian Americans are exposed to violence, gang activity, drugs, crime, and prostitution. With the support of various foundations and individuals, we opened our doors to these at-risk youth in 2008 and named the new youth program ROYA (Reviving Our Youths’ Aspirations) after a dear friend and supporter, Roya Forouzesh, a therapist who had a passion for working with vulnerable and underprivileged families.

The lives of the teens and young adults enrolled at ROYA have already been changed and so we cannot stop now. Our goal is to raise $25,000 to maintain and build this program over the upcoming year.

Your generous support at any amount at this time can make the difference. Please join us on October 18 for an open house reception for the ROYA program (see flyer and donation card attached and check our website at

Thanks for keeping hope alive in the lives of our youth.

Mona Afary

Clinical Director

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