SF installs 300 banners to mark Fil-Am History Month, combat Anti-Asian hate
SAN FRANCISCO – City Hall installed 300 banners featuring residents, artists, small businesses, community workers, and families of the SOMA Pilipinas throughout the Filipino Cultural Heritage District from Market to Brannan and 2nd to 11th streets.
The district highlights the diversity of its community and celebrates their strength amid the pandemic and a surge in anti-Asian hate.
“Our community was hit hard by the pandemic. A disproportionate number of Filipino nurses lost their lives and many of us lost loved ones. In SOMA, many residents lost their jobs and small businesses closed down. On top of all this, our elderly fear for their safety amidst the anti-Asian assaults in our City,” says Raquel Redondiez, Director of SOMA Pilipinas.
“This Filipino-American History Month, we wanted to recognize our community heroes. The banners are a declaration that we’re still here, and we will continue to build our cultural district towards an equitable economic recovery for all City,” she adds.
“We’re excited that these banners are flying high right in time for our UDSCVRD Culture Crawl,” says Desi Danganan, director of Kultivate Labs, which has been leading the effort to cultivate and support Filipino small businesses and develop the Mission corridor as a visible cultural and commercial corridor for the Filipino Cultural Heritage District.
The banners feature a collage of residents, artists and small businesses framed by the iconic sun of the SOMA Pilipinas logo and brand. “SOMA Pilipinas shines in its own light,” says Julie Munsayac, of Otherwise Graphic Design Lead, which also designed the first set of SOMA Pilipinas banners back in 2018.
Original photography on the banners and photos attached provided are by Nix Guirre, SOMA Pilipinas’ Program and Communications Coordinator.
The banners are supported by cultural district grants generated from the City’s Hotel Tax through the Mayor’s Office of Housing and Community Development.
While the hotel tax suffered an unprecedented decline with the pandemic, one-time grants were made available to help address COVID-specific impacts and to support economic recovery especially within the hardest-hit communities of color as represented by the City’s nine cultural districts.