The 2019 SF Peacemaker Award Recipients
Mina Fa
2019 Gail Sadalla Rising Peacemaker Award
Mina Fa is a senior at Phillip and Sala Burton High School in Visitacion Valley. Mina and her family are Cham, an ethnic group from Southeast Asia that she credits for teaching her to treat everybody she meets equally. Mina says her Muslim background teaches her to be mindful of the impact of her words.

Through the support of Peer Resources, Mina has developed an array of conflict resolution and life skills based on these core beliefs.
 
Through her Peer Resources experience, she turned her life around. Now she not only mediates student disputes, but she also mentors first generation and struggling young women who remind her of herself. She helps them secure clothing, school supplies, and employment while boosting their self-esteem.

Taking honors and AP classes, Mina will graduate with a 4.0 GPA and will begin San Francisco State University in the fall.
 
Mina is a strong advocate for herself and others, and she never fails to do what she knows to be the right thing. One of her teachers shares, “Mina looks conflict straight in the eye, listens to all perspectives with empathy, and works with all involved to move forward.”
 
In her own words, “I create peace in my community to eradicate the stigma of poverty. Coming from adversity should not define you, it actually helps create you.”
Sasanna Yee
2019 Raymond Shonholtz Visionary Peacemaker Award
Sasanna Yee, a San Francisco Visitacion Valley native, launched her Peace in the Southeast project to transform “hurt into love”. Motivated by the violent assault on her 88-year-old grandmother, Sasanna has been inspirational in creating racial unity and healing spaces in Visitacion Valley and beyond.

Now her life’s mission, Peace in the Southeast has rippled throughout many community spaces and neighborhoods in the southeast corner of San Francisco. Sasanna is dedicated to transformative justice, improving public safety, and serving all who live and work there.

Sasanna works as a bilingual yoga instructor and a transformational activist, passionate about health and wholeness on all levels. As an instructor, she uses yoga as a point of access to address trauma. As an activist, Sasanna provides compassionate support for underserved and underrepresented communities such as at-risk youth and immigrant families.

She is engaged in healing circles and roundtable dialogues to strengthen African American and Asian American relationships. Sasanna also teaches the art of mindfulness to the children of Visitacion Valley Elementary School.

By giving people the tools to connect deeper with themselves and each other, Sasanna firmly believes we can heal core wounds, build resilience, transform lives, and foster respectful community relations. She viscerally understands the connection between an individual’s pain and the pain of a community.

Through Peace in the Southeast, Sasanna’s journey as an inspirational healer and community leader is truly having a significant impact that continues to grow. Her message and practice is: “Peace begins with me”.
HOMEY
2019 Community Boards Leadership Peacemaker Award
HOMEY is a grassroots, non-profit deeply rooted in San Francisco. Founded by former gang members 20 years ago, HOMEY has unapologetically identified issues adversely affecting the youth and young adults throughout the Mission District.

They’re an inspirational community-empowerment organization combating youth violence and mass incarceration.

HOMEY does this through delivering hope, empowerment, leadership, culture, and most importantly, with love. They developed an innovative model that provides neutral spaces where rival gang members labor together to forge truly transformative peace accords.

They also work directly with youth and young adults in schools, on the street, and in jails to deliver their own brand of workshops, services, and empowerment activities.

The HOMEY team, concurrently, continues to build and expand their community partnerships through meetings, programming, and community building.

As they declare on their website: “We’re doing something about it by empowering rather than enabling participants in our program.”