In 1998 Pan Valley Institute (PVI) was founded as a program of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) with the intention of strengthening the leadership capacity and fostering the civic engagement of immigrants, in California’s diverse Central Valley.
We work with indigenous migrants from Mexico and Central America; Hmong and Cambodians refugees from Southeast Asia, and more recently refugee families arriving from Iraq, Palestine, Syria, and Iran.
PVI’s work is cross generational with specific emphasis on women, youth and indigenous populations.
One of our key strategies is to foster active citizenship by encouraging the process of political self-representation and realization of the power social actors can have and also need for bringing social change and advocating for just policies.
The work of PVI to support active citizenship with immigrant and refugee communities is guided by methodologies of Popular Education, Participatory Action Research, and Cultural Organizing which privilege the knowledge and wisdom of communities to identify goals and determine pathways forward.