“I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.”-Mother Teresa
Global: UNITED SIKHS’ health and education projects continue to address growing needs of our community by expanding in scope of current services and projects. From oral health to hypertension to access to health insurance information and services, the Community Education & Empowerment (CEED) team is committed to bringing much needed resources to the community.
Before we highlight some of our ongoing work in the community, we ask your help to double the impact! UNITED SIKHS is providing one-on-one enrollment assistance in New Jersey entirely supported by private funding. A generous funder has offered to match the money we raise SO PLEASE DONATE WHAT YOU CAN, $20, $50– IT ALL HELPS.
Here are other ways you can help:
- Volunteer with us. We need motivated community members working with us on projects and provide support.
- Talk about the importance of health and education: Access to health and education is crucial for our growth and development as a community. If you think that your local community can benefit from a CEED project or service, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
A few highlights for 2015 from our CEED projects:
Ongoing ACA Outreach and Enrollment: With the important changes that are occurring in healthcare in the United States, UNITED SIKHS continues to provide free enrollment assistance in New York and New Jersey under the Affordable Care Act. Over the past few years, UNITED SIKHS has assisted nearly 1000 community members and reached out to over 15,000. The 2015-2016 open enrollment period is ongoing now, so if you live in New York City or New Jersey, and you need affordable health coverage, make sure to contact our team:
For health insurance assistance appointments in New York, please call us at 718-441-6644.
For health insurance assistance appointments in New Jersey, please call us at 732-860-5066.
Sikh American Families Oral Health Promotion Project: In partnership with the DentaQuest Foundation, UNITED New York University Health Promotion and Prevention Research Center, and New York University College of Dentistry, the Sikh American Families Oral Health Promotion Project has engaged over 200 members in oral health promotion. Community members across New York and New Jersey completed an oral care curriculum that focused on providing information and resources for better access to care in language and in a culturally competent manner. Results show a culturally-tailored community health worker (CHW) program may foster improved oral hygiene behaviors and increased confidence in being able to take care of one’s own oral health as well as engage with providers. The program also promoted oral health care access and was well-received by community members.
Flossing demonstration in Carteret, NJ
Health Equity Hero Award: DentaQuest selected Dr. Rucha Kaur, Project Manager for the CEED at UNITED SIKHS ,as one of its 2015 Health Equity Heroes. Dr. Kavathe was recognized for her work in assisting immigrant communities in New York and New Jersey navigate the U.S. healthcare system. She is one of only seven individuals honored in the inaugural year of the Health Equity Heroes awards. Each hero is making a significant contribution to removing barriers to achieve optimal oral health for all.
Project Manager Dr. Rucha Kaur with the DentaQuest Foundation team at the Health Equity Hero award presentation.
REACH FAR: Experts suggest that 1 in 5 Asian Indians in USA has high blood pressure, so to increase awareness of high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease in the Sikh American community, UNITED SIKHS has engaged community members as part of REACH FAR, a 3-year program funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) through a REACH grant awarded to the NYU Center for the Study of Asian American Health (NYU CSAAH). REACH FAR stands for Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health for Asian Americans, and the goal of the program is to prevent cardiovascular disease in Asian Americans living in New York/New Jersey by increasing access to healthy foods and culturally tailored health coaching efforts to improve high blood pressure management.
REACH FAR promotion event in Carteret, NJ
Hypertension awareness project launch in Van Wyck, NY
Volunteers, partners and staff at the Keep on Track training, Richmond Hill, NY
Faith Based Fitness Initiative: Community members in Richmond Hill, Queens participated in a series of fitness classes as part of the Faith Based Fitness Initiative, supported by New York City Department of Health & Mental Hygiene (NYCDOHMH). Certified instructors led weekly classes for 6 weeks to engage community members in physical activity. The goal of the Faith Based Physical Activity Challenge is to promote physical activity through the faith community to enhance the comprehensive obesity prevention programs in New York City.
Community members with their fitness instructors, Faith Based Activity Challenge.
Anti-Bullying Campaign Workshops: This year, anti-bullying workshops were held across the United States. During these workshops, children were given the opportunity to stand up and speak about their experiences with bullying, while parents and students also received resources to help them handle instances of bullying. In 2015, we had the privilege of working with partners such as the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, UK artist DhanjalArt, and filmmaker Harpreet Kaur to make each workshop a unique experience, and introduce attendees to the allies who are there to stand by their side.
Anti-bullying workshop in Sterling, VA
CEED team members and volunteers are committed to supporting and helping community members in need. Together we will initiate effective and long-lasting changes. With greater awareness, as a society we can develop effective ways of responding to the needs of our community.
This year, UNITED SIKHS has positively impacted thousands of lives. We CAN DO much more with your help.
Dr. Rucha Kaur
Project Manager,Community Education & Empowerment Directorate (CEED), UNITED SIKHS