The Punjabi-American Cultural Association (PACA) was founded in 2002, as a non-profit organization. The association was founded by 11 individuals with various personas but with one main goal in mind — create a better understanding among different communities and educate people about the Punjabi culture and Sikh religion. PACA actively participates in many Punjabi and non- Punjabi events throughout the year to reach out to the public and to meet their overall objective.
Over the years, PACA has organized and/or participated in many events including:
- Punjabi Heritage Festivals – An annual event that showcases the Punjabi culture. The event has been held in Fairfield, the Mondavi Center in Davis, and the Vallejo Fairgrounds in Vallejo, with great success. The likes of Janice Miller, Sukhshinder Shinda, Gursewak Maan, Gurpreet Ghuggi, and Debi Maksoospuri have performed at the festival, which have been attended by local and state dignitaries.
- Food Drive – An annual food drive is held around the time of Vaisakhi with the great support and participation of the community. The food drive is a way for the Punjabi community to give donations to those in need. The food is donated to local food banks throughout Solano County.
- Blood Drive – An annual blood drive is also held during Vaisakhi.
Many of those in attendance for Vasaikhi at the Guru Nanak Sikh Temple, Fairfield, take the time out to give blood. Blood Centers of the Pacific are present to take the donations for those in need. The blood drive has become an annual event with the continued donations by the community.
- Punjabi Classes – Punjabi Classes are being offered to anyone who is interested in learning the basics of the Punjabi language. Similar to the bhangra classes, the punjabi classes are free and are offered to children ages 5-15. The classes are held every Sunday afternoon at the Guru Nanak Sikh Temple, Fairfield.
- Voter Registration – During Vaisakhi, PACA has made blank voter registration forms available to those that have not registered to vote. PACA members are present to assist those who are not familiar with the forms and to show interested voters just how it easy it is to become a registered voter in Solano County. For more information on voter registration, visit the Secretary of State website at www.sos.ca.gov/elections/.
- Libarary Books Donation – PACA has donated books about Sikhs and the Punjabi culture to local libraries throughout Solano County.
- Interfaith Council – PACA actively participates in the Solano County Interfaith Council. For more information, visit www.interfaithcouncilsolanocounty.org.
- Vaisakhi – Vaisakhi is celebrated every year at the Guru Nanak Sikh Temple, Fairfield.
- Public Education – PACA represents the Punjabi Community at various non- Punjabi events to educate the public about Sikhs and the Punjabi culture.
Sitting (From left to right): Gurpreet Singh Dhugga, Jessie Singh Bajwa, Sukie Singh Uppal, Charan Singh Sandhu, Harpinderjit Singh Jassar
Not pictured: Gurdeep Singh Bahia