Hunny Hach, 30’s
Long Beach, CA
DJ/Event Coordination & Creator and Co-Founder of Qhmer
What racial, ethnic, cultural community or communities do you identify with?
When and how did your family come to the United States? Where were you born?
My parents arrived in 1980 and I am the only one in my family born in the US. I was born in San Diego, California.
What are the strengths and challenges of being Qhmer-American?
The biggest strength I have identifying as a Cambodian American is being able to have a history and culture that is hundreds of years old. The Khmer Empire or Angkor Empire was once the largest empire in all of Southeast Asia. In America, we are taught about all these great empires throughout history - the Greeks, the Romans, the Mongols, and the Egyptians. But why is it that as we, Khmers, don't hold up our own history because it wasn't provided in a textbook at school? This is why I encourage all Khmer diasporas to seek knowledge outside of the classroom and find strength in our past to build a stronger future.
My biggest challenge didn't come from just being Cambodian growing up in White America, but also finding the strength to identify that I am also gay. To add that onto my identity was one of my largest struggles; I had a hard time with it throughout all of high school and most of my young adult life. When you're young, you are thought to be unique and to have found yourself, but in reality, you find that being different often leaves you alone and in the corner wondering how to fit in.
What is your proudest accomplishment?
Providing positive images of Qhmer folks for the Khmer community, creating a platform for my Qhmer family to share their stories, and DJ-ing in Cambodia for my parents to see.
What is one thing you learned or appreciate from your family growing up?
A love for Cambodia that has resonated with me to this day.
Do you speak your family's native language? Why or why not?
Yes, I am blessed enough to be able to speak Khmer fluently to both of my parents. My next step is to eventually learn how to read and write Khmer.
What advice do you have for the younger generations in our Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander community?
Take your time and don't feel pressure to place labels on your identities. Enjoy your youth, find your passions, and then build your professional path. The quicker that you place labels on yourself, the harder it will be to break away from them when you get older.
What gives you the greatest joy in life?
Travel, my family, my dogs, and music. (probably in that order too LOL).
Are there any projects you have created that you'd like to share and promote?
Coffee With Hunny; in which I open up more frequent dialogue called "Qhmer Talks". I also share personal insights on my personal life (being a married queer couple) and my travels!
Here are some other links where you can get to know me and my projects more:
My bio on Qhmer Org
Q Voice News
Khmer TV: Nancy Lee Show
Coming Out Qhmer Video
If you would like to share your voice as a person of color, please read the directions and fill out this form here. All ages, backgrounds, and generations welcome. Thank you!
Who are we?
Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander voices in our communities.
This is a section for AAPI specifically because, coming from our Khmer culture, we often feel invisible in various spaces from school to the media.
We want to show the ways in which we are the same and different, and that all of our backgrounds and experiences are valuable to learn and celebrate. Let's uplift each other!
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