Services Not Reaching Atlanta’s Elder Koreans

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Korean seniors in Atlanta are receiving fewer social services then their counterparts in the mainstream, reports the Korea Daily in Atlanta, despite the fact that their numbers are on the rise.

The report notes there are roughly some 3,000 Koreans 65 or older living in Georgia, with an overwhelming majority of them unable to access the kinds of programs available to seniors in the state.

The critical issue, according to a recent study cited in the article, is language access, with 8 out of 10 elderly Koreans surveyed saying they were unaware of how to access support services, or that they even existed.

The study surveyed 146 Korean seniors on a range of topics, such as adult day care, home health care and transportation services.

Banghwa Lee Casado, an assistant professor at the University of Maryland, who took part in the study, said social service agencies need to do more to reach immigrant communities with limited English language abilities.

Jongwon Lee of Atlanta's Korea Daily wrote this article as a participant in the MetLife Foundation Journalists in Aging Fellowship, a program of New America Media and the Gerontological Society of America.