Who We Are
We are dedicated Burmese youths who want to get united and to use our talents for the welfare of our community, our people and our Motherland.
The group was founded in San Francisco Bay Area but intended for all Burmese communities around the world regardless of beliefs and backgrounds.
- To promote welfare of Burmese community
- To unite all Burmese youth regardless of their ethnicity and beliefs
- To help all Burmese refugees, orphanages and poor in the country and around the world
- To promote and maintain Burmese Culture and Customs
- To empower the welfare of Burmese people and Burmese American Community
- To support the education and career networking of Burmese youths and immigrants
- To promote and preserve all Burmese ethnic cultures, arts and diversity
- To bring about a community effort of building the first Burmese (Myanmar) Community and Cultural Center in San Francisco Bay Area
Myat Soe Mon (President)
Born in Mandalay, Burma, Myat came to the U.S in 2000 to pursue a higher education. She holds a B.S in Managerial Economics from University of California, Davis and earned her MBA in Finance from Golden Gate University. Currently, she works as a Servicing Specialist at First Republic Bank. She has been actively involved in San Francisco Bay Area Burmese community since 2003. In 2000, she was the treasurer of United Burmese Association and was the event coordinator at the Myanmar Student Club. In 2003, she served as a Burmese news announcer at Moemaka.com, an online Burmese Radio station. In 2008, Myat and a group of Burmese students founded Burmese Youth Association (BYA), later known as One Myanmar Community, to bring the Burmese community in the Bay Area together and to promote welfare of the community. She co-founded Burma Refugee Family Network, a community-based non-profit organization, in order to assist refugees of all ethnic groups from Burma resettling in the wider San Francisco Bay Area, and currently serves as a Board of Director. Myat is honored to have been chosen to serve as the President of One Myanmar Community, and she looks forward to working with such a dedicated and talented team.
Lai Chow (Senior Vice President)
Lai was born and raised in Mandalay, Burma (aka Myanmar). He immigrated to the United States with his family in 2001 and currently lives in Daly City, California. He has been volunteering in the community events since 2007 and he joined BYA in 2010. Lai has a vision for BYA to be a strong voice representing the Burmese community with non-political affairs while preserving Burmese culture and values. He holds a BSEE degree from San Jose State University and is currently working as an RF Lab Application Engineer.
Kyaw Kyaw Soe (Acting Co-chair of the Board, Acting Secretary, Acting Treasurer, Acting Director of Myanmar Community and Cultural Center)
Kyaw Kyaw Soe was born in Yangon, Myanmar (Burma) and immigrated to the United States of America on 2000. He attended at the City College of San Francisco and San Jose State University. He has finished B.S. in Electrical Engineering along with minor in Computer Science. He is working for an electrical consultant company that designs electrical power system for residential and commercial complexes. He is one of the co-founders of BYA. Since 2000, he has been continuously involved in Burmese community events to promote and preserve Burmese culture.
Cho Oo Maung (Chair of the Board)
Wint Wah Lwin (VP of Operation)
Wint Wah Lwin started actively involved in the Burmese Youth Association in 2011. Before joining OMC (formerly known as BYA), Wint Wah Lwin served as the President of the Myanmar Student Club at City College of San Francisco from 2006-2007. She went to University of California, San Diego and graduated with B.S in Bioengineering. She is dedicated to promote Burmese cultures and awareness in the community. She is working at UCSF and currently involving in research studies that focus on Lung autoimmune diseases. She enjoys conducting academic researches, doing outdoor activities and spending time with friends and family.
Thin (Clara) Wit Yee (VP of Organization Development)
Clara was born in Yangon, Myanmar and came to the USA in 2003 for a higher education and an American dream. She holds a B.S in Accounting from San Francisco State University and an MBA in Accounting from Golden Gate University. She currently works as an Accounting Manager in Silicon Valley. Clara joined OMC (formerly known as BYA) in 2008 to promote culture and awareness in Myanmar community. She was a former secretary and treasurer of OMC, and she became the VP of organization development in 2014. She believes in giving back to community and hopes to support the continuous growth of OMC.
Lu Zaw Htet (Director of Myanmar Aid)
Lu was born in Thanlyin, a small town located in Yangon Province,Myanmar. He moved to San Francisco in July 2011 pursing the higher education after finishing his Bachelor Degree in Electrical Engineering. He is currently working as a Supervisor in UCSF Children Hospital. His passion of helping community, and helping those who are in need started since he was in Myanmar. He was a volunteer English Teaher at Free Funeral Services Society (FFSS), a well known non profit organization in Myanmar, for summer summer classes for the kids. He also volunteered at Maternal Blood Donor Association (MBDA). Lu joined One Myanmar Community (OMC) in August 2011. He is not only now serving as one of the Board Members of OMC, but also dedicated in volunteering at any good cause activities for the community during his free time. Playing tennis and soccer, going camping and hiking are Lu’s favorite things to do.
Wai Phyo (Regional Director – Myanmar)
Wai Phyo was born in Mandalay, but raised and grew up in many parts of Myanmar, including Lashio, Pyin Oo Lwin, Yangon, and Taunggyi. He came to the USA in 2002 to pursue for a higher education and he received the Bachelor and Master Degrees of Electrical Engineering from San Jose State University. He is currently working as an RF Engineer.
He has written a few articles, poems, and short stories mostly with a pen name of “Mg Ye Khaung (Silicon Valley)”. He is currently teaching Burmese language at Theravada Buddhist Youth Group (TBYG) and he also maintains http://burmese-community.blogspot.com . He is one of the co-founders of Burmese Youth Association (BYA) and has been actively involved in community and social affairs since arriving at the USA. His Motto is: “To promote my ethnic cultures and to help others”
Htet Aung Wint (VP of Public Relations)
Htet Aung Wint was born in Rangoon, Burma (Myanmar) and immigrated to the United States in 2003. He is currently a high school senior and plans to study International Relations and International Development in college. He joined OMC to reconnect with his Burmese community and heritage; he hopes to help other Burmese-American youth preserve and celebrate their Burmese identity while living in the United States. He feels passionate about political issues and socioeconomic affairs in Burma and the US; through OMC, he plans to help nurture a strong Burmese-American community.
Swe Swe Myint (Director of Arts & Culture)
Swe Swe was born in Yangon, Myanmar (Burma). She immigrated to the United States with her husband in 2000 and currently lives in Fremont, California. She is working for ASUS Computer International. She received her Bachelor of Arts from Yangon University of Distance Education in Myanmar (1996). She was a teacher & runner in Myanmar. She has been volunteering in the Burmese community since 2007 until now.
Rosalyn Chu (Event Manager)
Rosie was born in Mandalay, Burma and moved to America at a very young age. She grew up volunteering at the Burmese community events and regularly performing at our annual New Year festival. She attended UC San Diego and studied Cognitive Science. She is now working in healthcare administration for a local non-profit organization. Rosie is looking forward to seeing how our center’s programs can enrich our local community and the way we live. She hopes to expand her volunteer work when she visits Burma and share her knowledge and growth to younger generations.
Rick Heizman (Advisor)
Rick Heizman has long and deep experience in Burma, with 23 visits totaling 2 years. As a musicologist, he has recorded and documented Burma’s top traditional musicians, and opened a unique music school in Yangon in 1996. Rick has also been doing educational and humanitarian work in Burma, and has been a major figure with the long struggle for democracy. He married the brilliant harp player and singer, Su Wai, in 2009.
Mary Nicely (Advisor)
Mary Nicely is the President and CEO of Nicely Done Solutions, Inc (NDS)., a database development company located in Berkeley, California founded in 1994. Prior to joining NDS, Mary worked for Apple Computer for 13 years as a K-12 Customer Support Manager for the Western United States. Mary is also involved with various organizations focused on Burmese communities in the Bay Area and abroad. Mary grew up in Monterey, CA and attended Monterey Peninsula Community College receiving an AA in Business Administration. She transferred to UC Berkeley in 1980 and received a BA in Political Economy of Industrial Societies. She married her husband, whom she also works with, in 1982 and has two daughters.
Nwe Oo (Advisor)
Nwe Oo is a mother, a refugee, a worker, and a struggler who was born near Bangladesh-Burma border. She is a social worker turned political activist and has advocated for various refugee and immigrant rights. She co-founded the Rakhaing Women Union, United Ethnic nationalities Association and Burma Refugee Family Network. Nwe has held a variety of jobs over the years, including appointee for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and API advocacy with various White House Initiates on AAPI. She also received the 2011 Most Innovative Entrepreneur of the Year Award, the 2011 V-day Award and the 2012 The Best Refugee Advocate of the Year Award. Nwe has also been selected as one of the top 50 women of the world for 2013.
Grace Swe Zin Htaik (Advisor)
Grace has been actively involved in creative content industry in Myanmar since 1971. She performed in 200+ films as an actress, and in late 90’s, she has become a producer and a director. She is experienced as a liaison between the local government, state departments, corporations, and the management team to pursue, formulate and explore various collaborations. She acts as a participant and a facilitator for workshops in the fields of film & TV production, copyright and media in Myanmar and in abroad.
Zargy Myint Aung (Advisor)
Zargy came to United States in 2000 to get a better college education. Graduated from San Francisco Sates University with Bachelor Degree in Business majoring in Decision Science, Zargy has experience in retail management, business analysis and supply chain management. She is currently working as Global Supply Manager at Apple. Appreciating the opportunities that she got for her education and work experience in the United States, Zargy believes that people who are fortunate to have responsibility to share their experience to make a difference in their communities. She has strong emotional tie with her motherland Burma (Myanmar) and is passionate about helping Burmese and all ethnic people from Burma to have better socio-economic and education status in United States as well as in Burma. Zargy’s main goal for Burmese Youth Association is to lead an initiative of establishing the Community and Cultural Center in San Francisco Bay Area for all people of Burma.
Former Board Members
Zin Maw Htet (VP of Finance)
When Su Wai was young, she became musically inspired by listening to her father play Burmese mandolin in the evenings. She began to study Burmese Harp and excelled. Later, Su Wai passed the stiff requirements to enter the prestigious University of Culture in Burma, and she graduated with a degree in music in 1999. Su Wai came to the US in 2009, and quickly became known as a professional and respected musician, playing a unique instrument – the saung gauk (Burmese harp), and various Burmese drums. She performs often, for various types of events, within the Burmese Community and the large Asian Community. Su Wai recently released her CD, named GITA PON YIEK (The Image of Music). She sings the traditional classic repertoire accompanied by her virtuosic saung gauk playing. Su Wai lives in San Francisco and teaches the traditional Burmese singing and harp.
Eidarli Myint Aung
Being born and raised in Burma (Myanmar), Eidarli always thinks about giving back to Burma and the Burmese community one way or another whenever she can. Among all possible ways to give back to the community, her passion lies in the fields of education and technology. Spearheading BYA (now known as OMC) IT committee, she is also one of the main staff of EYE-B (Empowering Youth with Education – Burma), an educational program to help Burmese refugees kids. She holds a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree in Computer Science from University of California, Los Angeles, and is currently working as a software engineer in Silicon Valley.
Nant Nandi Kyaw Min
Nandi migrated to US in 2006 for an advanced education. She received her Bachelor of Arts from Yangon University of Myanmar in Economics. She earned her M.B.A with an emphasis in Marketing from Webster University, St. Louis, Missouri. She works as a Lead Accountant at Marriott international as well as a Finance coordinator at CPI ( Community Partners International ). Nandi has been actively involved in the Burmese Community since she moved to California. She also served as the treasurer of Burmese American Women Alliance (BAWA). Nandi has always been supporting BYA by leading the Finance committee and by helping in the fundraising activities with her knowledge in Marketing and Finance.
Kyaw Min Oo
A native of Burma from Mandalay, Kyaw Min Oo came to the US in 1995 to pursue a career in Aviation. Now, he holds a Private Pilot license with IFR. Prior to reaching his dream, he served as the President of United Burmese Association (UBA) at City College of San Francisco (CCSF) in 2001, while also serving as Vice President of Inter Club Council. He has earned Associate of Science degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management from City College San Francisco and Bachelor’s degree in Asian American Studies as an honoree hood recipient from San Francisco State University. He said, “When I first came to SF State, I didn’t know that I would discover that I share my struggle with many others throughout history as Asian Americans and that I have the power not only to think, but to make a change.” He has learned that an organized community is a strong community. He has volunteered in many activities to make the Bay Area Burmese American community more united and to help them find a voice in the U.S. To reach out to younger generation Burmese Americans, he co-founded the Burmese Youth Association of San Francisco and currently serves on its Board of Directors. He says that everything he accomplishes is to honor his father, who passed away a few years ago in Burma.
Than Min Kyaw
Moe San (VP of Public Relations)
Myat Myat Nwe (VP of Information Technology)
Khin Kyu Kyu Thet (Charlotte) (Director of Education)
Charlotte was born and raised in Mandalay, Myanmar. She came to the United States in 2012. Charlotte received her Bachelor of Computer Science from UCSM, University of Computer Studies Mandalay, in 2008. She is currently going to City College of San Francisco to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology. She actively involved in Burmese community events since she came to the States. She started to volunteer at Theravada Dhamma Society, TDS, in Daly City. Later, she moved to East Bay and continued her passion of helping Burmese community. She vigorously participates in One Myanmar Community and serves as Director of Education hoping to preserve and promote diverse Burmese culture and arts.
A Glimpse of OMC Activities
1: To empower the welfare of Burmese people and Burmese American community
We are a community-based non-profit organization and we have organized or volunteered in many activities of SF Bay Area to enhance the social welfare of Burmese people and community. We have initiated an Emergency Aid Program to aid people or humanitarian organizations who are in an immediate need of financial supports. We also have a translation and interpretation program to help Burmese refugees in hospitals and California driving tests. Moreover, OMC participated in the 2010 US Census from the leading role of the whole Burmese American Community so that the current Burmese population in the U.S. can be counted accurately and we have got a very positive final count result from official US Census data.
2: To support the education and career networking of Burmese youths and immigrants.
We are aiming to carry out educational tutoring programs, college counseling and career workshops for the youths, new immigrants and refugees from Burma. We have the bi-yearly Burmese Graduates Honoring Celebration starting from 2011 to encourage all Burmese students in the US to celebrate their educational journey. We helped volunteer in the “Empowering Youths with Education – Burma” program every Saturday in Oakland, to help the Burmese ethnic refugee students from Thai-Burma Border with their school work and English. We initiated the Burmese Professional Networking program in 2013.
3: To promote and preserve all Burmese ethnic cultures, arts and diversity
It is a very important mission for OMC to promote and preserve the cultures, arts and identities of all Burmese ethnic groups in U.S. To fulfill that objective, we have participated in many cultural activities such as Asian Pacific American Heritage Month celebrations and Southeast Asian Mid-autumn Harvest Festivals. OMC was involved in cultural exhibitions such as “Tales from Emerald Cities” of Asian Art Museum of San Francisco in Oct 25, 2009. OMC is also a partner organization of Southeast Asia Arts and Cultural Coalition (SEAACC) since September 2011. Moreover, OMC is teaching a cultural section in a monthly Burmese language and Cultural class to TBYG (Theravada Buddhist Youth Group), co-joining with Theravada Buddhist Society (TDS) in order to pass our cultural torches to younger Burmese American generations.
4: To continue support to maintain Myanmar Community and Cultural Center activities and efforts.
To establish a first Myanmar Community and Cultural Center in San Francisco Bay Area is one of the main objectives of founding OMC. As a part of the community, OMC has led the SF Bay Area Burmese Community to the first community fundraiser cultural concert and food fair on Aug 9, 2009, the second fundraiser on July 9, 2011 and the third and biggest fundraiser so far as the Burmese New Year Thingyan Festival on May 27, 2012. We formed the Myanmar Community and Cultural Center (BMCCC) Committee in 2010. June26, 2014, OMC has successfully helped opened the first Myanmar Community and Cultural Center in Union City, California.
OMC’s On-going projects and involvements
1) Burmese (Myanmar) Community and Cultural Center (BMCCC) Project
This is the main and most important project of OMC, initiated since 2009. OMC successfully organized the three fundraisers for a first Burmese (Myanmar) Community and Cultural Center (BMCCC) of Northern California together with the San Francisco Bay Area Burmese Community. The first fundraiser was held on on Aug 9, 2009, since then OMC has successfully organized Thingyan festival annually. On June 21, 2014, OMC opened the very first Myanmar Community & Cultural Center in Union City, California.
For more information, please check our upcoming events: OMC Upcoming Events
2) Theravada Buddhist Youth Group (TBYG) Burmese language and cultural class
TBYG, founded by Theravada Dhamma Society (TDS), strives to promote Theravada Buddhist culture, tradition and practices to all youths in a causal and fun environment. In addition to Buddhism, the group offers Burmese tradition and language classes, and organizes Burmese food and entertainment fares regularly, in order to preserve and instill Burmese cultural values and customs in all Burmese youths who were born outside of Burma or have been away from the motherland for a long time.
OMC actively participates in almost all the events organized by TBYG or TDS. On a regular basis, OMC members take part in teaching TBYG’s Burmese language and cultural class since the founding of TBYG in 2008. A lot of resources are needed to support that program for a long run.
The class is held every third Saturday of each month from 1pm to 4pm at
Theravada Dhamma Society Dhamma Hall, Room 101, Serramonte Del Rey
(former Jefferson High School, 2 blocks above the Serramonte Shopping Center),
699 Serramonte Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015 (650) 993 8770
For more information: http://tdsusa.blogspot.com/
3) Other Programs and Services
OMC is always exploring opportunities to get involved in volunteering services for social and community affairs such as education, translation, driving tests, job searching and health care for the refugees and immigrants occasionally. OMC organizes annual Summer Camping trips and other recreational activities to network with outdoor loving community members annually. OMC had participated fundraisers for natural disasters such as tsunami, earth quakes or cyclone for the people of the world as needed. OMC is also planning to initiate various language classes including Burmese.
BYA’s Past Activities and Events (The Chronicles of BYA)
1) BYA 2013 New Year Potluck (Jan 6, 2013)
BYA’s tradition continued as BYA held the 2013 New Year Potluck party on Jan 6, 2013 at 853 Commodore Dr. #121, San Bruno. BYA’s English slogan was voted and White Elephant Gift Exchange Game was joyfully played as celebrating the New Year of 2013.
2) 2752nd Karen Traditional New Year Celebration (Jan 12, 2013)
BYA was invited and performed “Chit Thaw Kabar Myay” song at the 2752nd Karen Traditional New Year Festival which was held on Jan 12, 2013 in Oakland.
3) 9th Annual Asian Heritage Street Celebration (May 18, 2013)
BYA participated in the 9th Annual Asian Heritage Street Celebration organized by the Asian Week Foundation on May 18, 2013 in San Francisco by joining in “The Face of Asia” Cultural Parade and performing Burmese traditional dances.
4) Burmese Community Center 2nd Fundraiser Thingyan New Year Water Festival of Northern California (May 26, 2013)
The Burmese New Year Water Festival, usually fallen in April, is the biggest and funniest festival for the people of Burma. Although other Southeast Asian neighbors such as Thailand, Laos and Cambodia have similar festivals, the Burmese way of celebration itself have different cultural perspectives and unique features dedicated only to this special time called “Thingyan,” such as Thingyan music, Thingyan dance, Thingyan costumes, Thingyan food, Thingyan flowers and playing Thingyan water unlike any others. This year BYA, together with BMCCC and Burmese Community continued the success and tradition again on May 26, 2103 in Kennedy Park, Union City as the 4th Fundraiser for the Community and Cultural Center of Burmese people.
5) 2012-2013 Burmese Graduates Honoring Dinner (July 7, 2013)
The event was held to honor the high school, Associate, Bachelor, Master and Ph.D. Burmese graduates from all over the colleges and universities of the United States of America for the classes of 2012 and 2013.
6) BYA 4th Annual Summer Camping (Aug 2 – 4, 2013)
BYA did it again! We went to Turtletown recreation area and had loads of fun. Thanks to all the campers and organizers to make this incredibly fun trip happen!
1) Vietnamese Tet Festival (Jan 15, 2012)
BYA entertainment group performed at the Vietnamese New Year Tet Festival on Jan 15, 2012 in San Francisco.
2) 8th Annual Asian Heritage Street Celebration (May 19, 2012)
BYA participated in the 8th Annual Asian Heritage Street Celebration organized by the Asian Week Foundation on May 19, 2012 in San Francisco. BYA was involved in the event by joining in the Face of Asian Cultural Parade, performing Burmese traditional ethnic dances and showcasing Burmese cultures at the Southeast Asian Exhibition of the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco.
3) 1st Burmese Community New Year Water Festival of Northern California (May 27, 2012)
On May 27, 2012, BYA led and organized a Burmese Community New Year Water Festival called ‘SF Bay Area Thingyan 2012” in the Kennedy Park of Union City. This was also a fundraiser for building the first Burmese (Myanmar) Community and Cultural Center in San Francisco Bay Area. “Thingyan” is the largest traditional new year festival of Burmese people and it has become the biggest Burmese ethnic cultural showcasing event of Northern California. (The event flyer is attached)
4) BYA 3rd Annual Summer Camping (July 13-15, 2012)
BYA went to the Big Meadow campground for its 3rd Summer camping trip on July 13, 2011. Burma trivia fun quizzes were played and BYA visited the Sequoia National Forest on its return trip.
5) SF Burmese Community Meeting with Daw Suu Event (Sep 29, 2012)
When the Burmese Democracy icon Daw Aung San Suu Kyi came to San Francisco, BYA members participated and volunteered as individuals at the Burmese Community meeting with Daw Suu event, which was held on Sep 29, 2012 at the University of San Francisco, where thousands of Burmese eagerly gathered to meet and listen to the speech of their beloved leader.
6) BYA 5th Birthday Celebration Dinner (Oct 20, 2012)
The fifth birthday celebration dinner of BYA was held on Oct 20, 2012 at 101, Eastmoor Ave #118, Daly City. Each BYA‘s Board Member gave speech and shared thoughts with the members regarding the progresses and future steps of BYA.
7) Pann Khayan Pyar COBA Fundraiser Event (Nov 11, 2012)
BYA helped and participated in the “Pann Khayan Pyar” Fundraiser Event, organized by the San Francisco Chapter of Citizen of Burma Award (COBA) group on Nov 11, 2012 in Daly City. Burmese singer Saung Oo Hlaing, song writer Ko Ye Lwin and writer Daw Than Myint Aung were present at the event as the guest speakers.
1) 63rd Annual Chin National Day Celebration (Feb 19, 2011)
BYA Entertainment and Cultural team performed the “Chin Doe Htar Ni” song at the
63rd Annual Chin National Day Celebration in Oakland on Feb 19, 2011.
2) 2010-2011 Burmese Graduates Honoring Dinner (June 4, 2011)
This event is intended to hold bi-annually to honor the Burmese graduates from Colleges and Universities for their educational achievements, by doing so to encourage all the other Burmese American generations with their own educational journeys. This first event was successfully held on June 4, 2011 in San Francisco, inviting 2 professional guest speakers for inspiration and honoring 26 of Associate, Bachelor, Master and Ph.D. Burmese graduates from all over the colleges and universities of the United States of America.
3) Burmese (Myanmar) Community and Cultural Center 2nd Fundraiser Event (July 9, 2011)
It was held at the Little Theatre of Daly City on July 9 2011 as the Burmese (Myanmar) Community and Cultural Center 2nd Fundraiser Event. The highlight of the event is Burmese Cultural Talent Show and awards were given out to the Burmese talented winners of the new generation!
4) BYA 2nd Annual Summer Camping and Election (Aug 19-21, 2011)
BYA went to the New Melones Lake for its 2nd Summer camping trip on Aug 19, 2011. BYA’s 2nd Election was also held on Aug 20, 2011 at the campsite and Kyaw Kyaw Soe was elected as the 2nd President of BYA. Campers were divided 4 groups and competed each other for fun!
5) 2011 SEA Mid-Autumn Harvest Festival (Sep 10, 2011)
BYA co-organized this first Southeast Asian cultural festival joining hands together with SEAACC (Southeast Asian Arts and Cultural Coalition) on Sep 10, 2011 in San Francisco. BYA’s cultural exhibitions and traditional performances were most cheered at the event.
6) BYA 4th Birthday Celebration Dinner (Oct 22, 2011)
The fourth birthday celebration dinner of BYA was held on Oct 22, 2011 at 6180, Marguerite Dr. Fremont. BYA’s year-long activities were presented to the public by the BYA president Kyaw Kyaw Soe and fun games were played after the dinner.
7) San Francisco Burmese Film Festival 2011 (Dec 3, 2011)
On December 3, 2011, BYA successfully organized the first Burmese Film Festival of San Francisco in San Francisco State University, partnering with Asian Students Union of San Francisco State University and Network of Myanmar American Association. The purposes are to promote Burmese arts and films in the United States and to raise funds for the Burmese Youth Association.
Famous actress Thet Mon Myint was present at the festival for her feature film “Adam, Eve and Dasa” by which she won her first Burmese Film Academy Award in 2012.
1) Burmese Classic 4th Anniversary Child Aid Fundraiser Concert (Feb 6, 2010)
BYA performed BYA’s theme “Youth Song” at the Burmese Classic 4th Anniversary Child Aid Fundraiser Concert on Feb 6, 2010.
2) BYA 1st Election (Feb 13, 2010)
BYA’s 1st ever election was held on Feb 13, 2010 at the Theravada Dhamma Society (TDS) Hall, Room (101), 699 Serramonte Blvd, Daly City. The first elected Board of Directors were as follows:
1. Kyaw Kyaw Soe (VP of Community and Social Affairs)
2. Myat Soe Mon
3. Kyaw Min Oo (Secretary)
4. Wai Phyo (President)
5. Mindy Khoo
6. Zarni Tun (VP of Education and Humanitarian Affairs)
7. Su Wai (VP of Entertainment and Cultural Affairs)
8. Thin Wit Yee (Treasurer)
9. Thura Ko
10. Phyo Sandi Aung
11. Hpyo Wai Hpyo (Publicist)
3) 6th Annual Asian Heritage Street Celebration (May 15, 2010)
BYA participated for the first time in the 6th Annual Asian Heritage Street Celebration organized by the Asian Week Foundation on May 15, 2010 in San Francisco. BYA was involved in the event by joining in the Asian Cultural Parade and Performances. BYA also raised funds by demonstrating and selling Burmese traditional food, costumes and arts to the audience.
4) BYA 1st Summer Camping (Aug 7-8, 2010)
It was the first camping trip organized by BYA. The idea came from the fact that BYA members were too tired from volunteering and organizing activities and they needed a recreational trip. Then there came the first BYA summer camping trip to Mt. Diablo on Aug 7, 2010 and returned the next day. BYA members were said to have been so refreshed and have had so much fun that it became BYA’s yearly tradition since then.
5) BYA 3rd Birthday Celebration Dinner (Oct 9, 2010)
The third birthday celebration dinner of BYA was held on Oct 9, 2010 at 272, Capp Street, San Francisco. BYA’s year-long activities were presented to the public by the BYA president Wai Phyo. Zarni Tun was voted as the BYAer of the year at the dinner.
6) Community Health and Wellness Fairs (Oct 9 & Dec 6, 2010)
BYA also volunteered in the community Health and Wellness fairs such as the “Hepatitis-B Free Health Screening for Burmese Community” event sponsored by the United States Burmese Medical Association (USBMA) on Oct 9, 2010 in Daly City and the “Multicultural Health and Wellness Fair” by the organization of Community Health for Asian Americans (CHAA) on Dec 6, 2010 in Oakland. But we won’t be able to figure out yet how many Burmese have been affected by HIV/AIDS and how they can be helped more effectively.
1) BYA 2009 New Year Potluck (Jan 3, 2009)
The 2009 BYA New Year Potluck party was held on Jan 3, 2009 as one of the team-building and fun activities for the BYA members to reflect the old year of friendship and to welcome the new year with hope and cheerfulness.
2) Thee Lay Thee Anyeint Fundraiser (Feb 1, 2009)
BYA helped organize and volunteer in the very popular “Thee Lay Thee” Anyeint group’s San Francisco fundraiser for the Burmese political prisoners on Feb 1, 2009.
3) First International Laos New Year Water Festival (April 11, 2009)
Laos Community held their first International New Year Festival on April 11, 2009 in San Francisco City Hall. By the invitation of Laos Community, BYA participated in the event by performing the Burmese traditional drum troupe, Burmese New Year dances and joining in the parade as we shared the similar cultures and the same New Year.
4) 16th Annual Asian American Heritage Festival (May 16, 2009)
BYA cultural group participated in the 16th Annual Asian American Heritage Festival, which was held at the Southern Alameda County Buddhist Church of Union City on May 16, 2009.
5) Child Aid Foundation 1st Annual Fundraiser (June 7, 2009)
BYA participated in the 1st anniversary of Child Aid foundation fundraiser event by selling Burmese sweets and desserts to support the children of Burma, orphaned by the Cyclone Nargis.
6) 2010 U.S Census and Burmese Community Center Fundraiser Event (Aug 9, 2009)
Although there are a lot of Burmese in the United States, Burmese people are not recognized in U.S. Census yet. To promote the awareness of US Census 2010 in Burmese Community so that our people get properly counted and to fundraise for the first Burmese Community and Cultural Center in the United States, BYA initiated and organized the Burmese Community Fundraiser Event on Aug 9, 2009 at 1501 Magnolia Ave, San Bruno, CA 94066.
7) 2009 Thadingyut Light Festival (Oct 3, 2009)
It was the second Thadingyut Light Festival event, organized by BYA. It was held on Oct 3, 2009 at the Alowtawpyie Monastery in El Sobrante.
8) BYA 2nd Birthday Celebration Dinner (Oct 10, 2009)
The second birthday celebration dinner of BYA was held on Oct 10, 2009 at 272, Capp Street, San Francisco. BYA’s year-long activities were presented to the public by the BYA representatives Kyaw Kyaw Soe and Myat Soe Mon. Fun and friendly games were played after the dinner.
9) Asian Art Museum “Tales from the Emerald Cities” Fall Family Festival (Oct 25, 2009)
In Oct 2009, the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco held a special art exhibition called “Tales from the Emerald Cities: Arts of Siam and Burma” and BYA was invited in their Fall Family Festival. There, BYA participated in that cultural event by showcasing Burmese Traditional costumes, demonstrating Burmese Tea Leaf Salad and Burmese Thanakha paste, performing Burmese Harp, traditional dances and joining in the Bumese puppet and art shows. It was a very successful cultural event of BYA.
1) Los Angeles Burmese Thingyan Festival (April 13, 2008)
BYA Doebat and Dance Group was actively performed in the Los Angeles Thingyan on April 13, 2008 and BYA Tangyat performers received the loudest cheers of the event from the audience.
2) Burmese Community Cyclone Nargis Relief Fundraiser (June 15, 2008)
Burma was hit by the Cyclone Nargis in May 2008 and more than 100,000 people died and suffered from the disaster. To help relieve the Nargis victims, BYA organized the fundraiser event on June 15, 2008 joining hands with the whole Burmese Community of San Francisco Bay Area. The event was a big success and able to send money and much needed help to the victims immediately.
3) Saffron Revolution 1st Anniversary Commemoration (Sep 26, 2008)
BYA co-organized the memorial prayer service to honor the 1st Anniversary of the Saffron Revolution, together with other community organizations in the famous Union Square of San Francisco on Sep 26, 2008.
4) BYA 1st Birthday Celebration (Oct 11, 2008)
The first birthday celebration dinner of BYA was held on Oct 11, 2008 at 272, Capp Street, San Francisco. The dream of the first Burmese Community Center of SF Bay Area was born on that evening.
1) Sae Taw Win II Dhamma Center Festival of Lights (Oct 13, 2007)
This is the first time BYA dancers and Doebat group performed in the Thadingyut Light Festival of Saw Taw Win II Dhamma Center under the name of Bay Area Burmese Youths (BABY). BYA (BABY) dancers performed the famous BYA’s signature oil-lamp dance.
2) 2007 Thadingyut Light Festival (Oct 26, 2007)
It is the second largest Burmese traditional festival and it was the first event, organized by BYA and held on Oct 26, 2007 at the Mettananda Vihara Burmese Monastery.
3) Ludu Burmese Literary Talk Event (Nov 24, 2007)
This event was held on Nov 24, 2007 at 4619 Central Ave, Fremont to mark the 90th Birthday of renowned Burmese Literature icon Ludu Daw Ah Mar. BYA invited a well-known Burmese Academy Winning Director and Artist U Win Pe and a top Burmese classic singer and author Daw Mar Mar Aye to give literary talks to the audience. It was the first and successful cultural and fundraiser event of BYA as the event deepened the interest of the young Burmese American generations to preserve and promote the Burmese literature and culture among the community.