Lao Heritage Foundation(LHF) was first founded in Washington D.C. in 2003. The core
purpose is to preserve and maintain the lifelong culture and traditions of Laos
through arts, music and performances. The Seattle branch emerged after the
mother organization two years later.
This past August, the Lao Heritage
Foundation-Seattle Chapter completed its third Summer Camp program. There were
more than 40 attendants, most of them young school children. Chittaphone
Outtama Khampradith of the LHF Seattle Chapter the Summer Camp project with VOA in a
two-part interviews. "The two-week Summer Day Camp took place at Wat
Mixay, the Lao Temple in Seattle, where Lao culture and traditions were taught through
arts, music and performances," Chittaphone explained.
also mentioned that the Lao temple and the Laotian-American community in the
area contributed a lot to help make the summer program possible. Chittaphone, a
founder of the Kinaly Dance Troup, joined the Lao Heritage Foundation to branch
out the new chapter in the Seattle Metropolitan area. "Our regular music and dance program are scheduled
for every Sun. We have now rented a professional dance studio for the children
to practice, both music and dances," Chittaphone said.
Vonsady, one of the young Laotian American parents who sent two of his girls to
join the Summer Camp, told VOA why he enrolled his children at Summer Camp, "I
came to the United at very young age, I don't speak Lao that well and know very
little about Laos, therefore, I want my children who were born here in the
States to learn the history of the country where their parents came from; learn
about culture, traditions and learn how to speak Lao. And those girls are very
happy and excited to be around with other Laotians in this two-week program."
though working for a non-profit organization is a hard job and there's a time
that you feel like giving up, but this is not really what I want to do. I
forget everything and all the hardship once I get into the studio and see all
those young faces, who look up at me and want so much to learn and to explore
about Lao culture, traditions and all. I will continue to work hard and keep up
the long-term commitment to preserve the harmonious Lao culture and traditions
through arts, music & performances," Chittaphone concluded.