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Indian American Kerala Cultural and Civic Center
This is the internet version of the Kerala Center News letter. Vol.5 , 2000
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Awards 2000 Pictures
New Activities @ Kerala Center


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November 21, 2000

The National Indo-American Association for Senior Citizens (NIAASC) held its interactive conference on seniors (third in the series) along with its first General Body Meeting on Saturday, November 18, 2000 . The conference took place at the Kerala Center in Elmont from 10:00 A.M. To 3:00 P.M. Summary of the Conference & Workshops:

This conference focused on the following three issues, which are being faced by Indian American seniors in significant proportion:

* In-Family Conflicts and Compromises Faced by Immigrant Seniors
* Process of Developing a Community-based Senior Citizen Program
* Long Term Health Care and Medicaid

The morning session is an issue of growing importance to all immigrants: potential conflicts between recent and already-established immigrants. Parents, brothers and sisters who have recently joined their already-settled families in America, struggle to adjust socially, culturally and economically with a new way of life, while cherishing long-held traditional values. On the other hand, established family members have to play an important role in creating an amicable environment while offering due respect and consideration to the new immigrant relatives (mostly seniors).
The second session offered insights on how to develop a community-based senior citizens program.
The afternoon session focused on long-term care: who needs it, why it is needed, how to get it and important criteria to be considered before selecting a long-term care vendor. Discussion included eligibility and how to apply for Medicaid.
Speakers and Panelists:
NIAASC invited speakers and panelists who are experts in their fields, and who provided a wealth of information to the participants.

Sessions Report:
The Conference opened with a welcome from E.M. Stephen, President and Executive Director of the Indian American Kerala Center and NIAASC Board member. Rajeshwar Prasad, NIAASC President, then presented the agenda and format of the program. Dr. Satish Varma moderated the morning session, and Dr. Ashwin Pandya led the afternoon session.
In the morning session, Dr. Jyotsna Kalavar, Assistant Professor and Program Director of Human Development and Family Studies at Penn State University, presented her scholarly work, “The Asian Indian Elderly in America.” She highlighted problems faced by the elderly who immigrated recently. Her talk included the unique problems encountered, depending on the region to which they immigrated and what age they came to America. This was followed by a presentation by Dr. Nalini Juthani, Professor at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Director of Psychiatry Education Program at Bronx Lebanon Hospital. She summarized the results of a survey of recent elderly immigrants in Westchester County. Dr. Juthani compared and contrasted the issues faced by them and by immigrants who have lived here for many years and are economically independent.
At noon, Carol Hunt, Executive Director of Jamaica Service Program for Older Adults, enumerated seven important ingredients required to establish a community-based senior program. Purushottam Karra, president of Statewide Indo-American Senior Citizens Association of New Jersey, then listed senior programs available to the Indian community in New Jersey.
In the afternoon, Kathleen Quinn, of the Social Services Department of Nassau County, spoke of the requirements to obtain Medicaid benefits for short- and long-term care. She generously offered to make herself available to phone calls for further information. Judith Jaross, Advisor of Long Term Care Insurance for the John Hancock Insurance Company, followed up by summarizing how commercial long-term care insurance coverage fits into the health care planning of seniors who can afford private insurance.
Sushila Gidwani-Buschi, NIAASC Vice President, concluded the day by thanking all participants, sponsors, collaborative organizations, speakers, panelists and moderators for their cooperation and participation in the conference.

Election of New NIAASC Officers for 2000:
The General Body formally approved the Board of Directors of NIAASC. The Board of Directors at its organizational meeting, chaired by Dr. Ashvin Doshi, held immediately after the conference elected the officers of the Board of Directors for 2001:
Rajeshwar Prasad – President
Ashwin Pandya – Vice President
Ashok Satkalmi – Vice President
Mathew Koshi – Secretary
Romesh Tewari - Treasurer

For further information, please call Mr. Rajeshwar Prasad, NIAASC president at (631) 698-0512.

========New Activities at Kerala center========

J. J. Entertainments
Organizing Different Activities
at Kerala Center

Dance class: Mrs. Beena Menon ( Every Tuesday 6.00 PM - 8.00 PM )

Karate Class: S. Clark (Everey Monday, Wednesday and Friday 6.00 PM - 9.00 PM

Yoga Class: Mrs. Sarama (Every Friday 7.00 PM - 9.00 PM )

Malayalam Class: M. Paulose ( Every Friday 7.00 PM - 9.00 PM )

Instumental Music Class ( Keyboard ): Madhu ( Every Saturday 10 AM - 1.PM )

Vocal Music Class: Mrs. Shantha Madhu ( Every Saturday 10 AM - 1 PM )