Earlier this year, New AP’s Family Empowerment program ran a well-attended women’s health and family planning workshop for the Burmese community at the Clarkston Library. Guest speakers included: Dr. Gulshan Harjee, co-founder of the Clarkston Community Health Center; Amy Armstrong Wells, DeKalb County Board of Health; Rihana Nesrudin, Oakhurst Medical Center; Grace Paulsen, Reproductive Health Educator, International Rescue Committee (IRC).
Every speaker had a chance to share information about their health program services. New AP’s AmeriCorps members and Parents as Teachers (PAT) staff offered their help with set-up, language interpretation and babysitting so that attending women could focus on listening to the presenters.
Workshop attendees were thrilled to find out about free and easily accessible health program services. They learned about family planning services to help them make healthy choices, early pregnancy tests and general medical check-ups for little to no cost.
At the end of the workshop, the attendees were given time to comment and ask questions. As the audience only spoke Burmese, our PAT program teammate, Joy Lyan, helped interpret for the entire two-hour workshop. Based on the pre- and post-test survey results, the participants learned and left with a better understanding of health services.
Speakers stand ready to join our next workshop for the Nepali community in April 2019!
About New American Pathways’ Family Empowerment Program
The Family Empowerment program is designed to advocate for and empower victims of domestic violence. Most victims that come to our program are immigrants and refugees living in the Atlanta community.
When refugees resettle in the U.S., they have limited time and resources to adapt to American society, learn English, and navigate complex social systems to quickly improve their living situation. Almost immediately, they start a job to support their family and young children. As a result, many refugee and immigrant women have limited access to basic needs, such as women’s rights, English literacy, regular medical checkups and family planning.
New AP’s Family Empowerment program staff advocate for women and LGBTQ members from all over the world, such as Myanmar (formerly Burma), Bhutan, India, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Guatemala, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Ukraine and Russia. Often, program participants face significant challenges related to language and culture.
Our program helps people overcome these barriers and access resources. New AP staff hold educational workshops, most often for the Clarkston community, that focus on preventing domestic violence, child marriage, sexual abuse and financial literacy.