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Ways to Help Our Community

A New Community Fund Has Been Established by the American Swedish Institute

We at ASI are reaching out to our community partners to learn what we can do as an organization to best assist them in this time of crisis. We stand prepared to act and to be of service.

Donations have been coming in to various organizations across the Twin Cities to help businesses, families and individuals affected by the recent burning or looting of businesses that were essential sources of food and supplies in Phillips West and other neighborhoods. To aid organizations, such as PICA Head Start which was the benificiary of an earlier donation drive organized by ASI, we have established a Community Fund that will allow us to help direct support where it is needed.  

Gifts can be made to the American Swedish Institute Community Fund, designated to local organizations including PICA Head Start. 

The American Swedish Institute has long-standing partnerships with our neighbors in the Phillips West community including Ebenezer and PICA, also working with schools including Bancroft and Anderson Elementary.  PICA serves preschool children and their families through play-based museum experiences, outdoor play and garden opportunities and family programming. PICA Head Start serves nearly 2,500 children and families in Hennepin County and offers a variety of programs and services for children and families in addition to Head Start and Early Head Start.  We are also considering additional donation dates and will share details as they are confirmed. 

    We encourage and implore friends of the American Swedish Institute to assist in the rebuilding of our community. Here are some  of the organizations working toward that goal:


    June 1, 2020

    Statement on the Killing of George Floyd

    The American Swedish Institute

    One week ago today, we witnessed the tragic, senseless killing by police of George Floyd on a city street just 14 blocks from the American Swedish Institute.

    We at ASI are committed to our neighborhood, our city and to the values of listening, understanding, respect and justice. Our mission is to be a safe and welcoming gathering place for people of diverse heritages to hear and honor each other’s experiences, stories and traditions.

    We intend to be a part of the systemic change needed for our community to heal.

    We mourn the loss of George Floyd’s life and extend our deepest sympathies to his family and friends. We also offer our gratitude for the courage of those who bore witness to and tried to prevent his death. They, too, suffered from this traumatic event.

    We condemn this violent act and recognize that it reflects an ongoing problem of excessive use of police force and the systemic inequities that disproportionately and unfairly threaten Black, POC and Indigenous peoples.

    We cherish our beloved community: our home — the Phillips West neighborhood — and the cultural vitality, creativity and partnerships we enjoy. We treasure our strong and lasting connections with immigrant communities from across the world, which are so much a part of ASI’s heritage and work.

    We affirm the critical importance of peaceful dissent and speaking truth to power in order to root out injustice.

    We grieve the destruction of our neighborhoods — lives, livelihoods, essential services, cultural institutions and resources. This shared loss affects us all, now and into the future.

    We value justice, equity and safety for all members of our community and commit to uniting with many others to rebuild and restore our neighborhoods, heal the trauma of this great loss and work to remedy the injustices people of color face.

    We believe in an inclusive and welcoming world, and we will not tolerate hate in any form. We remain dedicated to being a gathering place for all to deepen mutual understanding and respect.

    We at ASI are reaching out to our community partners to learn what we can do as an organization to best assist them in this time of crisis. We stand prepared to act and to be of service.

    On behalf of the Board of Trustees and Staff of the American Swedish Institute,

    Barbara Linell Glaser, Ed.D.

    Chair, Board of Trustees

    Bruce Karstadt

    President and CEO