What is the goal?

To strengthen the health and well-being of the Hmong Community in California by improving access to quality healthcare and advocating for better cross-cultural interactions between Hmong culture and Western medicine.


Why is this important?

There is no word for “advocate” in the Hmong language. The traditional Hmong culture has a system of healthcare highly different from Western medicine. With the large influx of Hmong refugees being resettled in California in 2004-2005, cross-cultural conflicts between healthcare providers and Hmong refugees became a well-documented yet unaddressed issue. Cultural and linguistic differences between these two cultures have led to complicated interactions, at times with tragic results.


What is Valley Vision doing about it?

Valley Vision began working with multiple health nonprofits that serve the Hmong community throughout the Central Valley to help change that. In Phase 1, Valley Vision supported these organizations in gaining better access to healthcare in the U.S. In Phase 2, Valley Vision facilitated collaboration and capacity-building among these organizations to empower the Hmong Community to advocate for themselves.



The Hmong Health Collaborative was conducted from 2005 to 2008.



  • Adoption of Hmong spiritual care policies at several area hospitals
  • Increased mental health services for the Hmong community
  • Completed training of over 80 Hmong community leaders using a culturally competent adaptation of the PICO model.
  • Trained HHC partners and Hmong community members employed in health and mental health settings on the “Connecting Worlds” interpreter curriculum.
  • Educated Hmong community members on common health issues and the healthcare system in California.
  • A self-sufficient Hmong Health Collaborative, eliminating the need of an outside facilitator



  • Fresno Center for New Americans
  • Fresno Interdenominational Refugee Ministries
  • Healthy House within a MATCH Coalition
  • Hmong Women’s Heritage Association
  • Lao Family Community of Sacramento
  • Lao Family Community of Stockton
  • Merced Lao Family
  • Southeast Asian Assistance Center
  • Legal Services of Northern California
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