Youth Group Takes on SF…for a day


Written by Jesse Jarreau
CERI has enriched the lives of many Cambodian American families in the Oakland Bay Area. Through their many programs, CERI has provided a safe place for adults and children. CERI’s has three active youth programs for youth aged six to twenty four. The youth programs provide opportunities to experience adventures, peer support, learn leadership skills, receive assistance with academic needs, and counseling.

On June 23rd, 2016, our children’s group spent the day in San Francisco. CERI took 12 inspiring youth to “the city” for a fun-filled day visiting the Aquarium of the Bay and the Musée Mécanique. The youth group kicked off the day by boarding a ferry to San Francisco. The ferry not only provided an environmentally safe and efficient way to travel, but also provided a new perspective on the San Francisco Bay. The ferry gave the youth an opportunity to see iconic structures of the Bay such as the Bay Bridge and the Port of Oakland Cranes up close.

Upon our arrival in San Francisco, we disembarked from the ferry. Walking down the Piers, the youth and the volunteers got to experience the roaring buzz of Fisherman’s Wharf. This lively area only provided more fuel of excitement for the next adventure that was yet to come. After a stroll down the piers, we arrived at the Aquarium of the Bay. The Aquarium brought marine life of the Bay into an interactive learning environment. Whether it was the tunnels of marine life or the Jellyfish Exhibit, the Aquarium of the Bay had something for everyone to love. Our time spent at the Aquarium made all of us hungry! So after a brief break for lunch, our next stop on our bucket list was Musée Mécanique. This vintage arcade left the youth in awe when they discovered it was nothing like the modern arcades that they have been to in the past. After a full day of laughs and giggles (even Laughing Sal could laugh too), our time at Musée Mécanique came to an end.

Our adventure came to a close when our ferry came to meet us at Pier 41. On the ferry ride back, the youth and chaperones were worn out by the day’s excursion. The fresh ocean breeze and slow but gentle rock of the ferry ended a successful outing to the Golden Gate City. In the video below, is a photo show of our time in the Golden City. We hope you enjoy it!

Click on the photo above to watch the photo show.

Shout out to our volunteers Tiana and Olivia for their help to ensure a safe and fun adventure! Thank You!


CERI’s youth programs are made possible by funding generated by prop 63, which is distributed by Alameda County. We also receive grants and philanthropic donations which make it possible to continue our work with Cambodian families in the East Bay.

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2015 in review


The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 520 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 9 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Summer Retreat 2015, The Sequoia National Forest


On August 9th bright and early, we loaded up our truck, bought food and snacks for our long road trip, and headed to the Sequoia National Forest! The next several days we enjoyed hikes, a natural water slide, a bubbling creek near our little village in the woods, and cooking over the fire.

After a long California drought, we found the abundantly gushing waterfalls and creek to be very healing. Apparently lots of wildlife such as bears and deer also found the creek refreshing, but we were careful not to disturb their visits to the stream.

After several days of roughing and toughing it out in the woods, we headed home to Oakland.

We are very grateful to the Devata Giving Circle for contributing funds to our yearly retreat, and providing another memorable experience for our young women. We are also grateful to Maria Remigio and her lovely family. They provided tents and delicious food for all of us. Until next year…!

9am August 9th Loading Up the Truck

Loading Up the Truck

It's a big forest

It’s a big forest.

At last we found our beautiful site.

At last we found our beautiful site.  Our volunteer, Maria and her family, had tents and dinner waiting.


Pitching in



Tunbo, our firekeeper and bear chaser















Hood to the Wood: Hike at Mt. Diablo State Park


In April of 2015 our young women completed a successful hike at Mt. Diablo State Park in Walnut Creek, CA. Our reward was a beautiful view of the bay.


Top of the Mountain Happy Dance

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Classic “We Made It Moment”


A well deserved rest


The youth programs at CERI are supported by funding generated by Prop 63, and awarded through Alameda County. Please click on our donation tab to contribute to all of CERI’s successful programs.

Through the Looking Glass, 2014


Lil’ J plans her trip to Cambodia-stay tuned for an article on her project with an orphanage in Cambodia


H shows off her cooking skills


Srey, youth program assistant


(L) Miss Silva,volunteer and (R) Sreyneang


Love to Dance


Back to School Lunch

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Holiday Celebrations


Creative Writing

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Listening to Jasmin Dial from Game Theory Academy, present her earn-to-learn program


C and A More Balanced World founder, Mandy (R)

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Scrapbooking fun with Maria Ranallo, a wonderful volunteer


Maria Remigio bearing gifts

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Retreat 2014

api womens leadership summit

API Women’s Leadership Summit 2014


The youth programs at CERI are supported by funding generated by Prop 63, and awarded through Alameda County. Please click on our donation tab to contribute to all of CERI’s successful programs.

2014 Asian Pacific Islander Women’s Leadership Summit


by Maria Remigio

On September 20th, 2014, 11 young women from Roya and 24 women from CERI’s adult program joined the 2nd API Women’s Summit, “Building Power, Setting Sail”, held in Oakland, CA.

api womens leadership summit

The program began at 10:00 a.m. with a welcome ceremony. Each community said hello in their own native language and presented an offering as a symbol of gratitude from their culture. Each offering was placed on a small table, surrounded by a circle of women. A few men were present.

The Summit, had a full program presented by the API Women’s Circle. Ten organizational partners, and 25 Workshop Facilitators offered workshops in the areas of employment, wellness and healing, meditation, education and organizing, and raising healthy families. Many of our young women who actively participated in the meditation workshop found it worthwhile.

Roya’s  young women participated in the boat making  project. The boat project included tools. The participants were required to create a list of goals necessary to survive and succeed in a journey to a better life. The young women brainstormed together on goals and developed this list:

  • higher education
  • freedom
  • independence
  • gratitude
  • creativity
  • motivation
  • wise choices
  • respect
  • responsibility
  • stability
  • safety
  • self respect
  • stable source of income


Together, the Roya young women’s group members built one of 13 boats as an exercise in learning leadership skills. The adults and older adults from CERI built two boats. Eleven other communites, Asian American, mixed heritage communities, Bhutanese, Nepali, Filipino, Korean, Mongolian, Myanmar (Burma), Native American, Pacific Islander, Tibetan, and Vietnamese communities also particpated in the boat building exercise.

At the end of the day. Roya’s young women came to the realization that team work was necessary for their personal success as well as the growth of their community. The young women had a great time and expressed the desire to participate in future summits.


The youth programs at CERI are supported by funding generated by Prop 63, and awarded through Alameda County. Please click on our donation tab to contribute to all of CERI’s successful programs.

Peace Begins With Me

by Eiei Phoo
Last Summer I received a scholarship to attend the 2014 Global Youth Peace Summit sponsored by the Amala Foundation. I belong to the young women’s program, Apsara’s Warriors, at CERI, and our program coordinator, Jen Jastrab, asked me if I would be interested in attending the summit. She helped me fill out the application and offered to drive me to the camp. She really wanted someone to represent CERI at the summit. All Jen could tell me was that my experience would be amazing and I would meet people from all over the world. It was true.
 The summit took place in beautiful Forest Hill, CA.
The most important thing I learned at the Amala Global Youth Peace Summit Camp is that people shouldn’t go to sleep with a stone in their heart. This is really hard for some people because some people choose to keep the things that bother them inside their heart and they’re afraid to let their inner emotions be heard. Trying to sleep it off only makes it worse.
I learned how to let go my of negative emotions and my burdens.


At the Amala Global Youth Peace Summmit Camp, I developed a strong connection with my cabin girls. Their life stories spoke to me and I really felt like I connected with them. I met amazing people from all over the world and their words of wisdom inspired me.




This experience made me realize that I shouldn’t care about what people think of me. I should focus on me. I also realized that it’s okay to tell someone how you feel and to ask for help from people.




I learned from the other campers and the staff, that people have their struggles, and when they get through them, we all come out stronger.





I love my Amala Peace Family and I really do miss them. I would recommend other people come to this camp because it helps you to find your inner self and connects your beautiful self with amazing people who are sharing the same experience as you. At Camp Amala you will make friends and learn to ask for help. You won’t feel like you’re alone, you will always have someone by your side.



Funding generated from Prop 63 and awarded through Alameda County supports the youth programs at CERI.