UNITED SIKHS & Partners Team up to address the Physical Health of Minority Communities.
"Your health is your greatest wealth." This is a core belief of the UNITED SIKHS and is reflected in many of our ongoing programs and initiatives. Throughout the year we've collaborated with businesses, hospitals and local governments, to provide minority communities across the world with increased access to healthcare and wellness resources. Here's a look at some of the ways we're helping our communities across the globe.
Ongoing ACA Outreach and Enrollment
UNITED SIKHS continues to provide free, Affordable Care Act enrollment assistance in New York and New Jersey. Over the past few years, UNITED SIKHS has reached out to more than 20,000 community members, assisting many with their enrollment questions and plans. The 2016-2017 enrollment period is currently open. If you live in New York City or New Jersey and need affordable health coverage, 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.
Access Health NYC
As part of a collaboration with Access Health NYC, UNITED SIKHS staff has provided language assistance to Punjabi speaking residents in the community. Staff members educated residents on their options in regards to health care coverage and access. Nearly 20,000 community members were reached either in person, or via the media. Access Health NYC is a citywide initiative that enables culturally-and linguistically-competent non-profit community-based organizations (CBOs) in all 5 boroughs to do health care outreach and public education in their communities. The initiative is particularly aimed at the uninsured.
Destination India
In 2016, UNITED SIKHS teamed up with the Centers for Disease Control and Management (CDC) for the Destination India initiative. The program is designed to educate travelers on precautions to take before, during and after their stay in India. As part of the program volunteers, known as Health Talkers, sign up to talk to members of their community about the importance of seeing providers and being up to date on their health needs before they travel.
REACH FAR Experts suggest that one in five Asian Indians in the USA has high blood pressure. In order 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. The three-year program is funded by the 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. The goal of the program is to prevent cardiovascular disease in Asian Americans living in New York/New Jersey. This is done by increasing access to healthy foods and providing culturally tailored health coaching to improve high blood pressure management.
In our second year, we continued to engage Gurdwaras, restaurants and grocery stores to promote heart health and awareness on hypertension. As part of the project, 154 Sikh American community members from three area Gurdwaras completed surveys and participated in blood pressure screenings. Surveys revealed that two in five respondents had high blood pressure. Untreated, high blood pressure increases the risk of heart disease, stroke, kidney damage, and vision loss, and in extreme cases, it can also cause early death. Data also showed that 33% of respondents had been diagnosed with high blood pressure by their doctor or other health professional. Of these, the majority had been using medication to control their high blood pressure.
The REACH FAR project is supported in part by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention under award numbers U58DP005621 and U48DP005008 and the National Institutes of Health - National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities under award number P60MD000538. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Multi-language Health Education Material
In a two-year collaborative process with NYU CSAAH and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, UNITED SIKHS and other community partners participated in a content review of culturally adapted and translated health education materials for cardiovascular disease prevention. Materials include the "Keep On Track" - Simple Steps for a Healthier Lifestyle" guides and "Nutrition Plate Planners" that promote use of the Plate Method to enjoy healthy cultural foods for blood pressure management. These materials are available in Punjabi and contain culturally appropriate foods, people, names and activities for the Asian Indian community. The materials can be accessed here.
Oral Health Videos released
UNITED SIKHS is proud to present the Oral Health video series in Punjabi. The goal of these short, educational videos is to increase oral health awareness in the the Sikh American community. The videos include culturally relevant information on popular oral health topics.
The video series was created as part of the Sikh American Families Oral Health Promotion Project. From 2012-2015, in partnership with the 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 hundreds of community members in New York City and New Jersey. Along with a preliminary needs assessment, UNITED SIKHS worked with partners to implement an oral care curriculum among community members providing information and resources for better access to care in language and in a culturally competent manner. The project is supported by the Dentaquest Foundation.
The videos are designed to provide important oral health information quickly and easily. Data collected through the project shows that demonstration of basic oral care techniques such as brushing and flossing increases the chances of behavior changes, as well as confidence in being able to take care of one's own dental health. The full series is available here.

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Issued by:
Rucha Kaur
Associate Director
Community Education & Empowerment Directorate
Tel: 1-888-243-1690
E: ceed-usa@unitedsikhs.org | contact@unitedsikhs.org

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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.
Community Empowerment and Education Division (CEED)
Empowering individuals and groups to attain their full potential and become active participants in society through Education, Training and Community development projects. They take their place in the decision-making processes in their local community as well as in the international arena.
International Civil and Human Rights Advocacy (ICHRA)
Standing up for and helping protect the civil and human rights of minorities and marginalized groups in the Americas, Europe and Asia.
The Sikh Aid team provides non-partisan global humanitarian disaster relief services, which not only provide immediate aid but also rehabilitation help to the needy.
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