Tag Archive | Iraq

Grace: Elderly Iraqi Refugee Phone Survey

For the past few weeks, I have been using an over the phone translation service in order to conduct interviews with Iraqi elders in and around Portland and Westbrook, Maine. It has been fascinating and very rewarding to talk with these elderly refugees, but also very overwhelming and sad at times. Elderly refugees face many unique difficulties around issues of health, acculturation, trauma, isolation, etc., and my conversations with individuals touched on many of these challenges.

When I asked an elderly woman if she has any friends around her own age she is able to spend time with, she answered: “No, all of my friends are back home in Iraq. I have only been here for a short time so I haven’t had a chance to meet any new people my age.” Many of the elderly Iraqi refugees I spoke with are in similar situations, and feel very isolated in this new culture, new weather, and their new role within the family/society. One man told me. “I enjoyed my job in Baghdad. Now, I’m new here and I don’t know people. I’m not able to do what I did at home.


Many of the refugees I have spoken with have experienced loss of family members, and some are here on Read More…