Neng Om, 30’s
Current Role: Project Manager
What racial, ethnic, cultural community or communities do you identify with?
Tell us about your family story.
Our family survived the genocide and lived in Cambodia until 1999 when we escaped the Hun Sem regime to find better opportunities and life in the U.S.
What are the strengths and challenges of being Cambodian?
I have lived and experienced many hardships while I was in Cambodia until I was 11. Growing up in the U.S., I had another world to help widen my perspectives. It's incredibly challenging being a small Asian woman in this country where I'm often looked down upon and treated as though I'm a kid. Even talked to like I don't know anything because I look young. Many opportunities were given to others over me just because they couldn't pronounce my name.
What is your proudest accomplishment?
My proudest moment is having been in a very difficult marriage that didn't work out and juggling many different things at the same time: Raising my kids, putting up with my oldest Cambodian daughter responsibilities, working full time and going to school at the University of WA full time where I successfully completed my Bachelor's Degree in Science and Technologies.
Reflecting on how you grew up, what did you learn or appreciate from your family?
Their strength and resilience to keep pushing forward, regardless of the challenges and obstacles. Another one is their ability to be generous and give to those less than us while they are still struggling themselves.
Do you speak your family's native language? Why or why not?
Yes. I was born in Cambodia and went to school there until 3rd grade so I can read, write and speak Khmer fluently.
What advice do you have for the younger generations in our Cambodian community?
To never forget your roots. To please reach out to our motherland to learn and become aware of the struggles of our people and use our skills and resources to help them towards gaining freedom and democracy.
What gives you the greatest joy in life?
My two children gives me all the reason to push forward and to not give up. Without them, I wouldn't be here today.
Are there any projects you have created that you'd like to share and promote?
I'm going to get back into uploading episodes onto my "I Am a Cambodian Daughter" Podcast and I hope to reach out to my fellow Asian Americans out there to connect with themselves and their roots. My podcast is available in your favorite podcast directories, like Apple Podcast, Spotify, Pandora, Podcast Addiction, Deezer, and more!
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!
Want to share your voice?
To be featured, read the directions and fill out this form. All ages, backgrounds, and generations welcome.
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