Tag Archives: Immigrant Community

‘Yai Nin’ Explores Powerful Thai Matriarch Ninlawan Pinyo

by Beverly Aarons

The Seattle Globalist was a daily online publication that covered the connections between local and global issues in Seattle. The Emerald is keeping alive its legacy of highlighting our city’s diverse voices by regularly publishing and re-publishing stories aligned with the Globalist’s mission. 

Stern and powerful matriarchs are central to most Thai families — they’re not big on hugs, but they will “yell at the people that need to be yelled at in your defense,” filmmaker Champ Ensminger said during a telephone interview. Ninlawan Pinyo, Ensminger’s grandmother and the central character in his short documentary Yai Nin, is a matriarch who defies all Western stereotypes of what it means to be an Asian woman — she’s feisty, confident, and the owner of the successful Naem Pinyo sausage factory in Chiang Mai, Thailand. But it wasn’t until after Ensminger moved back to Chiang Mai in 2013 that he began to witness the breadth of Pinyo’s personal power and her willingness to wield it to protect her family.

“The neighbors [thought] I was with a bunch of white backpacker folks trying to grow weed,” Ensminger said of the day his grandmother rescued him from Thai immigration police. The truth was that he was working with the nonprofit Documentary Arts Asia to build a theater and exhibition space. But nonetheless, he found himself and the other volunteers covered in dirt from the construction site and sulking in front of the immigration office. Pinyo arrived at the office and demanded to see the manager. 

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Delridge Farmers Market Starts This Weekend, Featuring Local, BIPOC Farmers

by Mark Van Streefkerk

Getting fresh, local produce in the hands of South Delridge’s East African, immigrant, and refugee communities has historically been a challenge. The USDA-designated food desert doesn’t have sufficient grocery options close by to meet the needs of the community, and last year’s closure of the West Seattle bridge only isolated the area even more. After securing important funding from the King Conservation District’s local food program about nine months ago, African Community Housing & Development (ACHD) decided to launch their own farmers market. 

Featuring BIPOC farmers and vendors, the Delridge Farmers Market brings locally-grown, culturally appropriate options for fresh produce and food to the community. The market kicks off this Saturday, June 12, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the courtyard of Hope Academy at 9421 18th Avenue Southwest. Masks are required, as well as social distancing protocols.

The Delridge Farmers Market pilot program will take place on the second Saturday of each month from June to November 2021.

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