Health Dept. awarded $40,000 grant to aid refugees

June 27th, 2017

Funding will help pay for interpreters to assist refugees seeking medical & environmental services

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (June 27, 2017). – The St. Joseph Community Health Foundation awarded a $40,000 grant to the Fort Wayne-Allen County Department of Health.  The grant dollars will be used to pay for two part-time interpreters to assist refugees seeking medical and environmental services.

“This grant will allow the Department to provide important health screenings to newly arriving refugees,” said Dr. Deborah McMahan, Allen County Health Commissioner, “In turn, this ensures that folks coming from countries without clean water and effective sanitation are treated timely for any infections they might bring with them.”

Since 2008, the St. Joseph Community Health Foundation has provided financial support to the Health Department for interpretation services.  Over time, the need has grown and the St. Joseph Community Health Foundation has continued to support that need with continual funding.

“Working with refugees has provided me with a better understanding of different cultures, “said Holly Kelly-Curry, medical assistant at the Fort Wayne-Allen County Department of Health, “Through our interpreters, I learned of the many conflicts that refugees face-not only in their home country, but also with acclimating to a new country, learning a foreign language, and getting used to the culture and customs while trying to find a job right away.”

To learn more about the Fort Wayne-Allen County Department of Health, please visit: www.allencountyhealth.com.

You can also learn more about the St. Joseph Community Health Foundation, please go to:  www.sjchf.org.

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(Photos courtesy of St. Joseph Community Health Foundation:

Saw Ridgeway, right, assists refugees with services at the Fort Wayne-Allen County Dept. of Health.)

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