QACON (Queer and Asian Conference) is a free three-day, student-run conference hosted at UC Berkeley devoted to the queer and Asian identities. The conference has been around since 2008 and is the only conference of its kind at the collegiate level. The first annual Queer and Asian Conference was founded with the intention of being a conference in which each participant’s story could and should be heard. With this emphasis on personal stories, QACON aspires to develop the process of community building with the message that empowerment often comes from within — that inspiration doesn’t have to be external but can come from our own voices, narratives, and experiences.
Can you help us continue to run this conference by making a gift today?
Fiat Flux: Let There Be Change!
As queer Asians and Asian Americans, we’re in a position we’ve never been in before. For the first time, there has been a wave of queer and Asian representation on screen, as well as in both social and traditional media. With the success of several mainstream films, we’re finally seeing narratives with actors who look like us. However, there are very few people in the media who are like us, who live the realities of day-to-day queer and Asian life.
Off the big screen, our progress is internationally hindered by legislation. Several Asian governments have enforced a variety of anti-queer legislation. Here, members of the trans community have been banned from serving in the U.S. military, while Cambodian, Laotian, Hmong, and Vietnamese American families are being split up by ICE. The list of injustices goes on.
As our community fluctuates, so must we change.
This year’s theme is a nod to the collegiate community from which this conference sprouted. Fiat Flux: Let There Be Change reframes the University of California’s motto: Fiat Lux: Let There Be Light. It is not enough to shed light on these challenges; though important, acknowledgment of issues does not equate to improvement. We must seek to create and maintain space for institutional, personal, and communal change in order to shape our future. There is no doubt we are hurtling forward; however, we must reflect on our progress to ensure that we are headed in the direction that best serves the entirety of our community.
The conference is primarily attended by those in the queer and/or Asian communities, many of whom are college students from across the country; alumni, community members and organizers, high school students, and youth groups also regularly attend. That said, with part of our goal being promoting university values of diversity, education, and open dialogue, the conference is open to people of all backgrounds who are interested in learning more about and supporting the queer and Asian intersection. We also aim to make this conference as accessible as possible, and thus have made the conference free of cost to attendees.
Our goals are to empower individuals, build community, and encourage our attendees to think critically about the struggles faced by our intersection. Through keynote speakers, workshops, film and art showings, community performances, storytelling, and devised mingling activities, we aim to both celebrate and investigate the intersection of the queer and Asian identities, an intersection which is often overlooked in textbooks and conventional curriculum. Our space is open to all who are interested, whether they be queer, Asian, or allied individuals. Not only will attendees be exposed to a great deal of history, culture, and ideas related to our conference’s focus, but they will also be able to establish networks of support with other attendees who share similar experiences.
Where do donations go?
We are currently trying to raise money in order to best provide for these goals. Since many people from the Berkeley community and beyond attend our conference, we wish to give them the best experience possible, and in order to do so, we would like to have the best events, speakers, and resources. Room reservations on campus, vegan, gluten-free food, and publicity materials are also significant costs to the conference. In addition, a major concern of ours is accessibility (for example, transportation on campus and visual/audial aids), and with extra funding, we hope to be able to make the event accessible and enjoyable to anyone who wishes to attend.
In donating to this conference, donors can help expand the reach of this conference and enrich the experiences of those who attend. With more support, we hope to be able to spark important conversations about underserved communities, and for these discussions to reach beyond the conference itself into the mainstream. Should we end up with more than what would be reasonable to spend for this year, we will save any excess funds for next year’s conference.
Please support our cause by making a donation today!
Thank you so much for your support, and go bears!
For more information, feel free to check out our website (currently down—we’re looking into getting free hosting), visit and message our Facebook page, or shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, of course, don’t hesitate to drop by! As previously mentioned, the conference is open and free to anyone who wishes to attend. Register today!
of Thanking You
A public thank you via our conference Facebook page!
Prior to April 7th — a spot in this year’s booklet and on our website will be dedicated to our most generous crowdfunding donors (if they choose to be named)
After April 7th — a special mention will be made during the opening ceremony thanking each of our most generous donors