OAKLAND, California – Compassion’s Oakland (CIO) co-founders Jessica Owyoung and Katrina Ramos believe that change will come when you show kindness, care, and love.
In February 2020, Compassion Out of Unrest was born as a nonprofit dedicated to empowering the AAPI community.
“We started in response to what was happening, the attacks on our fellow Asian citizens, on people who looked like my parents and my grandparents,” said Owyoung. “It got to a point where I couldn’t sit back and watch, I had to act.”
Compassion in Oakland grows from one to over 500 volunteers, providing community members with resources that promote unity, safety, and awareness. The organization’s escort services focus on helping the senior community members that make up Oakland’s vibrant Chinatown neighborhood.
Amid the recent attacks, the CIO strives to protect the AAPI elders by accompanying them on their way to a target.
“I would be happy if you see us as companions, be your buddy and rely on us to support you with any appointments, errands or anything you need to do,” said Ramos.
The large group of volunteers are from across the Bay Area and take away the worries of the elderly as many are emerging from their homes for the first time since the onset of COVID-19.
“Our volunteer base is very diverse. It’s the community that supports the community, regardless of their background, ”Owyoung said. “Someone who is just there without having to say anything really conveys worlds to those who are afraid.”
To request an escort, fill out this form or call (510) 200-8682. Upon receipt of the escort request, the CIO will match you or your loved one with a volunteer who will accompany the trip.
“If we could only help one person feel safer while walking, I believe we have accomplished and supported our mission,” said Ramos.
Compassion in Oakland continues to expand its services and recently opened a new chapter in the Sunset District of San Francisco.
More information about Compassion in Oakland can be found here.
To become a volunteer visit here.
Go here to make a donation to support CIO.
Follow @compassioninoakland on Instagram for the latest updates.