Somali Seniors Program is a culturally appropriate service delivery project for the Somali community in the Dixon corridor of the City of Toronto. This corridor has one of largest concentration of the Somali and the South Asian community.
The project has the following integrated components:
Working with other service providers who are in the vicinity providing services to the senior population. It is our intention to work with mainstream and multicultural organizations which are providing services to seniors. Service Components
Day program for seniors and caregivers. This is the program where seniors are able to engage themselves in meaningful ways through discussion, interaction, play, art and craft, drama, spiritual engagement, poetry and the creative use of electronic media. Educational workshops on senior’s health issues are also organized.
Seniors need information in Somali and English languages. Furthermore, the seniors are engaged in arts and crafts.
Health related clinics are organized. Health professionals address the needs of the seniors. Often, caregivers are unable to take the seniors to family physicians which in turn results in seniors being admitted to hospital with serious issues. Our experience has been as follows:
- medication refills, if not taken care off, result in seniors admitted at hospitals;
- minor aches and pains, if left untreated result in major complications for seniors;
- mix and match of home remedies and western medications result in complications;
- prevention of illness (exercise, diet, regular medical check ups, dealing with stress) these require some caregiver support which is often unavailable.