History: The Asian American Federation, founded in 1990, is a nonprofit organization that works to advance the civic voice and well-being of Asian Americans in the New York metropolitan area. The organization is composed of 46 member agencies (as of 2021, it is now at 70) and promotes strategic philanthropy within the Asian American community in an effort to link community assets with community needs. It created and manages the Asian American Community Fund, and participates in the Coalition for New Philanthropy, a multi-year initiative to promote philanthropy in the African American, Latino and Asian American communities in metropolitan New York.
The organization also supports research and advocacy concerning critical issues for the Asian American community, including the Census Information Center and focused research projects. In addition, it publishes the online directory Human Services for Asian Americans, as well as numerous reports relating to issues of concern for Asian Americans in the greater New York City area, including several on the impact of the attacks of September 11, 2001 on the Asian American community as part of their American Red Cross funded Mental Health Project.
The Asian American Federation works to strengthen community services through augmenting the ability of its member agencies to address community needs and concerns. It provides management and technical assistance, access to resources such as grants, opportunities for cooperative and collaborative efforts, and advocacy on policy issues.
Summary: The Asian American Federation collection totals 171 linear feet and documents the organization’s fiscal conduit, research, and advocacy functions. Development files, totaling 41 linear feet, comprise the bulk of the collection. These include files relating to foundations, donors, grants, proposals, gala and fundraising, Asian American Community Fund, and philanthropy. Policy research files, totaling 38 linear feet, also constitute a significant bulk of the collection. A significant portion of those files relate to AAF’s extensive research on the impact of 9/11 on the Asian American community in Chinatown and its census research and outreach work. Because demographic information determines political strength and allocation of resources, AAF translated information into different languages and worked with the various A/PA communities to increase participation in the census. Program files constitute 18 linear feet and include files on its member agencies and fledgling organizations they have helped incubate. The collection also contains insurance information, personnel files, the Executive Director’s files, photographs, IT files, and electronic files. The IT files consist of 12 linear feet of manuals and software. The electronic files include born digital files backed up on the organization’s network drive. Most documentation for the past five years has been created digitally. AAF also tracks information on various member organizations acquiring IT and networked systems.
Total Size: 171 linear feet and 171 boxes
APA-related Size: 171 linear feet and 171 boxes.
Languages of materials: English (primary) with some Chinese, Japanese, and Korean.
Location: Asian American Federation offices
Conditions Governing Access: Currently inaccessible to the public.