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Event News

Nile Sisters Focuses on Refugee and Ethnic Mental Health Throughout May

Filed in Event News, Health Program News by on May 11, 2017

Conceptual illustration of a tree as metaphor of mental illness versus mental health

Since 1949, the US has designated the month of May as national Mental Health Month». Throughout the month, events such as Mental Health Matters Day: Building Momentum and Strength Together» provide opportunities for the mental-health community and other stakeholders to raise awareness and understanding of mental health conditions in order to reduce stigma, educate the public, and advocate for affected individuals / communities. NSDI (Nile Sisters Development Initiative) is proud to join this long-standing tradition on behalf of refugee and ethnic populations.

In October 2016, NSDI conducted a community round-table discussion» of the mental and behavioral health needs of refugee and immigrant communities in San Diego County. Two subsequent community dialogues» convened to discuss the themes that emerged from the initial round table.

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Nile Sisters Hosts Mandated Reporter Workshops

Filed in Event News by on April 26, 2017

Because parenting strategies differ across cultures, child abuse can be difficult to measure. Individuals may parent well, but in different ways as influenced by their culture. It is important to acknowledge differing cultural values and motives among refugee and immigrant populations, who often experience overwhelming need for support to reduce parental stress, increase family-member assistance, and provide access to culturally sensitive education regarding child abuse regulations in California.

Refugee and immigrant parents face many risk factors that can lead to Child Protective Services intervention. Factors include migration and acculturation stressors and socio-economic and cultural barriers. Upon resettlement, children often learn the new language and assimilate faster than their parents. A common source of tension between resettled parents and offspring is the differing value of privacy that emerges after children become more quickly immersed in American culture.

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Nile Sisters Founder Is a New Moxie Award Recipient

Filed in Event News by on April 25, 2017

Photo of Elizabeth Lou.

Elizabeth Lou, NSDI (Nile Sisters Development Initiative) Founder, President, and CEO, is one of ten female unsung heroes in San Diego County to be honored at the first Moxies award ceremony, hosted by the Moxie Theatre», founded by women with the aim of showcasing plays by female playwrights.

Event organizers describe a Moxie as a woman who possesses grit and determination, leads fearlessly with a sense of purpose, vision, and creativity, is a voice and advocate for other women, and brings excellence to her organization or community.

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District 9 Community Meets with Councilmember Gómez

Filed in Event News by on April 7, 2017

On Friday, April 7, 2017, NSDI (Nile Sisters Development Initiative) convened a meeting with City Councilmember Georgette Gómez (elected in 2016 to represent District 9). Also in attendance were recent Haitian entrants, residents from diverse refugee and ethnic backgrounds, and community leaders representing ethnic and faith-based entities that support refugees.

The group congratulated Councilmember Gómez on her City Council victory, welcomed her to their communities, and shared their most pressing concerns, including access to culturally and linguistically proficient resources and more skill-building programs.

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April Is National Minority Health Month

Filed in Event News by on April 1, 2017

April is designated as National Minority Health Month» by the US Deparment of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office of Minority Health (OMH) in order to raise awareness of health disparities and inequities throughout the country. Practicing the 2017 theme, Bridging Health Equity Across Communities, NSDI (Nile Sisters Development Initiative) is increasing awareness of health, social, and economic disparities that impact refugee and ethnic populations in the San Diego region.

San Diego County is estimated to have a population of 150,000 refugee residents; approximately 30,000 reside within the City of San Diego. Over the years, NSDI has highlighted and addressed health concerns and social determinants of health in order to alleviate challenges faced by vulnerable and hard-to-reach communities. In 2016, NSDI constituents represented 31 different countries and spoke 25 diverse languages, spanning four continents.

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United Nations 61st Commission on the Status of Women Recap

Filed in Event News by on March 30, 2017

Nile Sisters Development Initiative (NSDI) served on the United Nations Association of San Diego (UNA-SD) delegation to the United Nations 61st session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW61), March 13–24, 2017. Attendees of the annual meeting included delegates from UN member states, civil society actors, and non-governmental organizations accredited by the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

UNA-SD is one of only four UNA chapters that has achieved annual attendance status, resulting primarily from the leadership of NSDI board member and former UNA-SD president, Anne Hoiberg. Ms. Hoiberg is also the founder of the Women’s Museum of California, which hosted an official CSW61 side event entitled “Refugee Women Leading Women Worldwide from Abuse to Economic and Social Empowerment.” This event focused on resilient women, such as NSDI founder Elizabeth Lou, who have transformed their hardships into opportunities to serve others.

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March Mental Health Community Dialogue Follow-Up Meeting

Filed in Event News by on March 10, 2017

On Friday, March 10, 2017, Nile Sisters Development Initiative (NSDI) will host a follow-up to recent community dialogues convened to discuss refugee and immigrant mental health. During the March 10 meeting, NSDI will share the emergent themes from past dialogues and will solicit community feedback.

On October 5, 2016, NSDI convened the first roundtable mental health discussion. Ethnic, faith, and community leaders from the San Diego refugee community discussed growing concerns about the mental health needs of diverse refugee populations.

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Nile Sisters to Attend CSW61, UN Headquarters, NY

Filed in Event News by on March 10, 2017

Nile Sisters Development Initiative (NSDI) will be attending the sixty-first session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW61) from March 13 to March 24, 2017, at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, NY. The theme this year is “Women’s Economic Empowerment in the Changing World of Work.” The CSW is the principal global intergovernmental body dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women.

During the event, NSDI will be representing the United Nations Association of San Diego (UNA–SD). While at CSW61, NSDI also will be participating in the California Women’s Museum official side-event “Refugee Women Leading Women Worldwide from Abuse to Economic and Social Empowerment” at 4:30pm, Friday, March 17, 2017, at the UN Church Center, second floor.

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Female Genital Cutting: A Conversation in San Diego

Filed in Event News by on February 15, 2017

On January 25, 2017, Nile Sisters Development Initiative (NSDI) presented “Female Genital Cutting: A Conversation in San Diego,” an event that included short video introduction followed by panel discussion among local experts across several sectors

In December 2016, NSDI released Defenseless Against Female Genital Cutting, a new publication covering the topic of FGC in San Diego County. The publication highlights the reality of FGC in the San Diego region, given its large refugee population. San Diego is one of six nationally designated refugee zones in the United States. Approximately 150,000 refugees and former refugees reside in the county. Locally, an underreported 8,000 women and girls are potentially predisposed to FGC.

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SR-17 Increases Awareness of Female Genital Mutilation /Cutting

Filed in Event News by on February 6, 2017

Globally, February 6 marks the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C). Currently,more than 513,000 women and girls are at-risk of undergoing FGC in the US. California is the most impacted state, with more than 57,000 women and girls at risk. San Diego is the largest refugee resettlement site in the state, which warrants the need for greater action.

Due to the leadership of the Honorable Senator Toni Atkins, the State of California has passed SR-17 (Senate Resolution 17) relative to Female Genital Mutilation and Cutting (FGM/C) Awareness Day. This measure will increase awareness of FGM/C across sectors and strengthen California’s response to end this practice. The measure will empower not only at-risk communities, but also stakeholders working on their behalf, with the knowledge needed to address the practice. SR-17 will enhance grassroots efforts to break the silence surrounding FGM/C.

View arguments in support of SR-17 Go»
View SR-17»

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