Empower and Educate!
UNITED SIKHS Community Empowerment and Education Directorate Surpassed 2013
Expectations in Meeting the Needs of the Community


Global: UNITED SIKHS’ Community Empowerment and Education Directorate (CEED) team has made great strides in 2013, from expanding the scope of our current services and projects to fostering new academic-community partnerships in addressing growing health needs of our community. From diabetes prevention to oral health to high impact population wide strategies to improve nutrition, the CEED team is committed to bringing much needed educational resources to the community.

We need your help to continue to provide important services to community members in need. Here’s how you can help:

A few highlights for 2013 from our CEED projects are:

The UNITED SIKHS Help Desk in Southall, England, which provides assistance every Tuesday from 10am to 1pm at the Singh Sabha Gurdwara at Park Avenue, Southall, was set up in response to an acute problem three years ago when an influx of young students from Panjab found themselves destitute because they were unable to find jobs to support themselves. You may watch a UNITED SIKHS film, on the students' plight, titled Udaari', at UNITEDSIKHS TV. UNITED SIKHS Help Desk, an ongoing project, opened in Southall in 2010. We helped hundreds of immigrants who had nowhere to turn to because of their immigration status and some who had ended up sleeping on the streets. The Help Desk is not just for immigrants. We often find people walk in for help about their health, housing and employment issues. This service continues in Southall and we are looking to expand globally.

Ongoing ACA Outreach and Enrollment, USA: With the important changes that are occurring in healthcare in the United States, UNITED SIKHS CEED is entering the foray of education, outreach and enrollment under the Affordable Care Act. Along with local and national partners, UNITED SIKHS is advocating for better services for the Limited English Proficiency populations, protection of rights of mixed status families and ensuring that safety net protections or low-cost options which serve non-citizens who may not be eligible under the exchange remain in place.

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 provided screening services and educational outreach to 222 community members as part of an in-depth needs assessment in the planning phase of the project. In the upcoming implementation phase, UNITED SIKHS will work with all of our partners to implementing an oral care curriculum among community members and continue to work on providing information and resources for better access to care in language and in a culturally competent manner.

Project RICE: Project RICE (Reaching Immigrants through Community Empowerment) continues to thrive as we continue to provide diabetes education classes at no cost to community members in Richmond Hill, NY and have expanded our reach to South Ozone Park, NY, totaling 100 participants in Year 4 of the project. Project RICE is an initiative of the New York University Health Promotion and Prevention Research Center (NYU PRC), supported by Cooperative Agreement 1U48DP001904-01 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Project HEAL (Healthy Eating and Active Living): To help eliminate chronic disease disparities and improve the health of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders across the U.S., UNITED SIKHS partnered with the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF) and the New York University Center for the Study of Asian American Health (NYU CSAAH) as part of the Strategies to Reach and Implement the Vision of Health Equity (STRIVE) project. Project HEAL worked with 8 Gurdwaras in 7 counties in New Jersey for increased access to better nutrition, healthy food and physical activity opportunities for the Sikh American community. This was the first opportunity UNITED SIKHS has had to implement high-impact population wide strategies to promote nutrition and physical activity that affects a large number of community members.

UMEED: A National Family Resource Center and hotline, UMEED is a service providing social support, prevention strategies and coordinated services for those suffering from domestic violence counseling, substance abuse, distress counseling after a disaster, etc. This year, over 100 calls and over 200 walk-ins came into the UMEED office in California, USA. With your help, UNITED SIKHS can do a lot more to help those in need.

Educare Centers: The two UNITED SIKHS Educare centers, in Fremont, CA and Richmond Hill, NY continue to provide much-needed low or no-cost services to local community members. The Family Resource Center in Fremont, CA continues to provide many services to empower and educate the community. Current programs include UMEED, ASAP- After School Academic Program, ESL, leadership camps, Feed the Hungry, SAT tutoring, blood drives, bullying prevention, immigration assistance, and other services as needed. The EduCare Center in Richmond Hill, NY continues to provide afterschool home aid to children from low income families. This year, we also sponsored a month long summer camp triggering the minds of the children through the summer with science, math, english, geography and reading exercises.

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. Commit with us to confront the reality of hindrances in our community and our children's lives.

This year, UNITED SIKHS has positively impacted over 5,000 lives. We CAN DO much more with your help.

Issued By:
Rucha Kavathe, PhD
Project Manager
Community Education & Empowerment Directorate (CEED), UNITED SIKHS

Our Mission

To transform underprivileged and minority communities and individuals into informed and vibrant members of society through civic, educational and personal development programs, by fostering active participation in social and economic activity.

UNITED SIKHS is also an avenue for networking between like-minded organisations to establish and nurture meaningful projects and dialogues - whether social, cultural or political- to promote harmony, understanding and reciprocity in our villages, towns and cities.

UNITED SIKHS is a coalition of organisations and individuals, who share a common vision based on the belief that there is no greater endeavour than to serve, empower and uplift fellow beings. The core of our philosophy is an unwavering commitment to civic service and social progress on behalf of the common good.

Accordingly, UNITED SIKHS has sought to fulfil its mission not only by informing, educating and uplifting fellow beings but also by participating in cross-cultural and political exchanges to ensure that the promises and benefits of democracy are realized by all.

We at UNITED SIKHS believe that the development of enlightened and progressive societies can be made possible by socially conscious groups of people who make a commitment to develop and direct human potential. Our work, efforts and achievements stand as a testament to our faith in this vision.

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