Working with low-income, refugee, and immigrant communities, ACHI has learned several problems facing these communities. Most of the issues are complex, challenging, and different depending on an individual’s journey of life, cultural background, linguistic and educational level. Most refugees and immigrants, carrying past traumatic experiences also face a considerable challenge during their initial resettlement as a form of cultural shock and linguistic barrier. Since also there is no adequate resettlement assistance, many go into stress and depression in some cases, suicidal or taking lifelong survival jobs below the poverty level. For some, unfortunately, the end up becomes dependent on warfare assistance. The combination of the above challenges and other domestic issues has a direct consequence on the health well-being of individuals in this population, which also the cause of substantial health disparities seen within these communities. ACHI believes that it is possible to overcome most of the problems with a complete understanding of the cultural and linguistic background and to establish trust as a basis before providing culturally competent appropriate services. Thus, the work of ACHI depends on the principles that
- understanding and eliminating cultural and linguistic barriers can empower individuals to adjust to their social environment easily while developing a healthy lifestyle.
- Through evidence-based practices, to develop confidence, trust, and capacity that individuals will be able to seek help for their self-development.
- We work with our partners through a comprehensive referral service to connect our clients to available services.
- We provide educational programs for health and skill development to engage clients to maintain a healthy lifestyle and become self-sufficient.
To mitigate some typical client’s issues and promote socialization, we also provide various individual and group activities, including peer to peer support systems, civic engagements, senior programs, and various socialization activities. In general, ACHI promotes to increase awareness and understanding of community health using public health principles. The ultimate goal is to help clients develop early intervention and prevention of coping mechanisms. Through the process, ACHI also works to provide support on changing or eliminating bad behavior and reduce stigmatization and fear of all forms that are the core causes hindering healing, prevention, and progress.
ACHI prioritizes public and mental health needs filling the gap of available services on this issue that are culturally competent and take careful consideration of the sensitive social sigma issues.
ACHI though is a small organization operates by mobilizing humanitarian dedicate volunteers. With the help of volunteers and dedicated staff, ACHI gradually expanding as needed its services to support the underserved immigrant communities and successfully developed programs and resources that have a significant impact.
Our Core Value
- Positive outlook and hope in life
- Excellence in Service
- Mutual Respect
- Cultural diversity
Mission and goals
ACHI’s unique approach is to provide culturally and linguistically sensitive social support systems and services. The primary goals are:
- To promote physical, mental, and social well-being
- To develop early coping mechanisms for any cultural shock, mental and other stress-related problems
- To provide support for quick resettlement and integration to their new community.
- To provide prevention and intervention awareness outreach and education to reduce health disparities within the community.
Founder and Executive Director
Manna Teclemariam, MPH in public health, Founder and Executive Director of ACHI and Public Health Educator, has been working in public health for twenty years. Stress Management Specialist, Leader of the Eritrean WomenÂ’s Association and Founder and Program Director for the African Community Health Institute. Former Counselor on behalf of the immigrant community, organizer of educational and community services for Eritrean children in Santa Clara County, as well as formerly on behalf of orphaned children and youth in Eritrea.
Board of Directors
- Ms. Manna Teclemariam, Founder and CEO of ACHI, Chairwoman
2. Dr. Frezghi Habte, Core Director, Department of Radiology, Stanford University
3. Mrs. Hatixha Grabishi, Lawyer specializing in immigration & disability services
4. Mr. Tekeste Teclu, Accountant/ Financial officer of ACHI
5. Mr. Mohammed Hassen, Social Worker / Community Activist