SFS bolsters the East African refugee community with its Family Strengthening program. We advocate on issues such as access to quality healthcare, civil rights, law enforcement, interpretation and translation, and school-related challenges.
Working with the San Diego Unified School District Parent Outreach and Engagement Department and the San Diego Police Department, we plan Somali Community Health and Education Forums in which East African refugee parents learn how to communicate better with school professionals given the language and cultural barriers. Parents also learn their rights in regards to access to quality healthcare, and receive information on proper nutrition and exercise, among other topics. The last forum was in October 2009.
We provide leadership development, conflict resolution and mediation through a series of workshops. One such workshop is a monthly Leadership Development training in cooperation with Nonprofit Management Solutions, covering many topics from health insurance to how to advocate on behalf of your community. We also incorporate a "Know Your Rights" presentation given by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) into our Leadership Development.
Counseling on family and youth issues are also provided by Somali Family Service to the East African refugee community. We assist those dealing with difficulties in adjusting to their new life in the U.S. and we direct them to the right resources in the community.