Health And Wellness Program
Bhutanese American Organization-Philadelphia came into existence for the purpose of serving the newly resettled Bhutanese community in Philadelphia area that struggles with multiple social and health concerns.
With view of taking the health concerns head on , soon after its inceptions BAOP began the project Health Focal Point Program conceptualized by Dr. Katherine Yun at Policy Lab, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Mr. P K Subedi the then Refugee Health Coordinator at Dept. of Health at City of Philadelphia and Mr Leela Kuikel, Executive Director of BAOP. The program recruited 25 youth from the community with high school or higher education and imparted twelve weeks of comprehensive training tailored toward resolving various health concerns faced by the community members. This program as you might have rightly guessed by now is not of clinical design but certainly carrying the DNA of cultural brokerage compatible with community health worker concept where volunteers from within the community with advantage of language proficiency (English and Nepali) connect the struggling community to the right clinical facilities to take advantage of it getting the issue resolved at the fasted possible window. The uniqueness of the program was that it not only aimed at solving the problem of the community and relieve them from stress and subsequent depression, it incorporated such aspect in the program which would go lifelong along with the community in addressing such concerns –ie program offered to teach the skills to the clients how such problems are resolved. In one and a half years’ time more than 100 clients were directly served practically resolving their concerns and also adding more than $100,000 to the local hospitals coffer handling a numerous medical bills.