The Burmese American Community Institute (BACI) was recently presented the Stone of Hope Award by the Indiana Civil Rights Commission at the ICRC Conference Luncheon at the Crowne Plaza Indianapolis-Dwtn-Union Stn.
“The Burmese American Community Institute has become synonymous with Hoosier Hospitality, with their programs and initiatives serving the refugee population in Indiana. BACI’s programs have helped thousands of individuals access high-quality workforce development, education, and business skills that are allowing people to overcome challenges, build a future, and make Indiana their home,” said ICRC Executive Director Gregory L. Wilson, Sr.
The Stone of Hope Award is given to an organization that has shown resilience in times of challenge. They not only break down barriers for themselves but also work to improve the lives of all people. They inspire others to persevere and are working toward building a future where everyone has access to equal opportunities.
“We are deeply honored and humbled by this recognition. This award is a recognition of the entire Burmese American community and Burmese Hoosiers for their efforts and contributions,” Elaisa Vahnie, BACI executive director, said in his award acceptance speech. “May we take this opportunity to collectively reaffirm our commitment to making our respective organizations, our communities, our state and our nation beacons of hope for everyone, look to our common vision and march together towards that goal and toward dreams in which all can fully enjoy freedom, peace, democracy, equality, justice and love, making our world a better place for humanity.”
Dr. Ro Ding, chair of the Board of Directors of BACI, said, “I would like to express my appreciation to the Indiana Civil Rights Commission for this honor. I am grateful also to the outstanding selfless and tireless leadership founded in dedication and passion that our Executive Director Elaisa Vahnie provides to the Burmese American Community Institute, to all of our staff, to our shared community and to society. We are proud to be a force of good as an institute that is visible to everyone in the community.”