As more of us live longer lives, we all want older Americans to have the opportunity to lead meaningful, connected lives.

Thanks to the leadership generosity of the West End Home Foundation, Nations Ministry began serving Nepali elders in 2018 through the innovative The Front Porch: Welcoming Refugee Elders Home program which combines culturally-relevant classroom experiences, enrichment events, and language-specific case management.

With over 1,200 refugee elders in Middle Tennessee, this growing community faces extreme social isolation and roadblocks to accessing care and services.  Nepali refugees who fled persecution in Bhutan make up the bulk of those elders.  Together, we help refugee elders connect with one another to reduce social isolation and foster healthier, happier lives.  The Front Porch classroom experiences and enrichment events provide those vital opportunities.  Westminster Presbyterian Church’s Joy in Learning provides regular enriching experiences where elders practice traditional handicrafts and try new experiences such as photography.  Through language-specific assistance, elders receive help in navigating healthcare and other systems for a better quality of life.

Nations Ministry Center’s The Front Porch has served over 60 very isolated refugee elders through case management and has yielded over $90,000 in annual benefit. The Front Porch provides weekly classroom experiences for 28 elders thanks to the West End Home Foundation.

Thanks to the West End Home Foundation’s partnership, The Front Porch helps people like Bishnu Subba.  Bishnu is a refugee, disabled, and receiving Social Security benefits. Suddenly the benefits stopped, and no one was there to help her to inquire about it; her family didn’t know what to do.  She joined The Front Porch program later, and Nations Ministry helped her apply for her disability benefit, took her for the review interview and updated all the required information to start the benefit again.  Thanks to Nations Ministry’s advocacy, she received benefits that had been delayed as well as an ongoing monthly benefit.  She had also been having difficulties with her green card application.  The immigration service often has a hard time capturing the fingerprints of older applicants.  She had to go four times but finally it worked and she received her green card.

Together, we are helping older Americans lead more meaningful, connected, and healthier lives.