Refugee and immigrant seniors face particular barriers to accessing services and support. The greatest of these is the fact that they typically do not speak English upon arrival and have difficulty learning a new language at this stage in their lives.
JFCS East Bay’s groups for Farsi/Dari- and Russian-speaking seniors offer social and educational support as people become accustomed to their lives in the United States. We cover health issues, mental health education, and how to access benefits and assistance. Our bilingual case managers also focus on decreasing seniors’ isolation and helping them with any family conflict.
In addition, our comprehensive Multicultural Caregiver Connections Program provides Afghan, Iranian, Iraqi, Syrian, and Russian family caregivers of older adults with case management services, counseling, and training. Many of these family caregivers are unfamiliar with how to access the services they need to support their aging loved ones. They might not speak English, and may not understand our medical and mental health systems. Our case managers provide guidance and advocacy to ensure that caregivers have the tools and knowledge they need to provide effective support for the seniors in their families.