Elder Independent Living Program:
The overall goal of the Cambodian Elder Independent Living Program is to provide a variety of health, social, and related support services in a protective setting to meet the culturally specific needs of Cambodian elders. This program provides culturally sensitive and linguistically appropriate services to assist the Cambodian and non-Cambodian elders who live in the seven counties in the Twin Cities metropolitan area.
The program offers elders aged 60 and older the following services: supplemental security income (SSI), welfare, advocacy, citizenship, translation, transportation, immigration assistance, civic education, social gathering, health education, physical activities, funeral assistance, English language classes, Medicare application, cultural and traditional ceremonies, and housing assistance.
Cambodian elders have experienced difficult lives due to their past experiences during the civil war, killing field period and in refugee camps. The majority of Cambodian elders have poor health and a high rate of chronic diseases and conditions. In addition, there is no adult day centers specifically designed for Cambodian elders in the twin cities.
Therefore, this program assists the elders in acclimating to a new culture and living healthy lives. Each year, the program serves 500 elders. A group of Senior Companion members volunteer 4 hours each day, five days a week.