Mission and History
SEAMAAC (founded in 1984, as the Southeast Asian Mutual Assistance Associations Coalition, Inc.) has 32 years of experience serving and advocating for Philadelphia’s immigrants and refugees. Their mission is to support immigrants, refugees, and their families as they seek access to opportunities, which would advance the condition of their lives in the United States. They bring immigrant issues to the forefront for policymakers, while meeting community needs through direct services focused on health, social services, and education. SEAMAAC provides holistic, culturally competent, and linguistically appropriate client services, including referrals and education for breast health and cancer screenings. Since 2009, SEAMAAC has consistently been a Community Navigation and Education grantee of Komen Philadelphia.
Komen Philadelphia-Funded Program
SEAMAAC’s Asian Women’s Health Program plans and facilitates small-group education sessions on women’s health needs with their peers. They assist medically underserved women to access free or low-cost women’s health screenings, (including mammograms, clinical breast exams, gynecologic exams, and general wellness screenings), at partner medical providers. SEAMAAC provides support to women to navigate the health care system through scheduling appointments, locating their doctor’s office, attending appointments, advocating for language access, helping them to apply for health insurance, and supporting women with follow-up care needs. They provide support based on ethnicity to a wide range of ethnic backgrounds to ensure the language barrier does not prevent women from receiving the health care they need. They also assist women in applying for insurance through the affordable care act during open enrollment.
Impact – Our Mission in Action
One recent example of the excellent work SEAMAAC does is comes from a Friend to Friend Party for the Indonesian Community. One woman who attended the session had a lump on the underside of her breast, and due to the party she was able to identify the importance of following up with her Primary Care Provider as soon as possible. A SEAMAAC Indonesian Outreach Worker continues to work with the woman to make sure that she receives an appointment for a mammogram and is able to navigate the appointment and referral system to get the health care that she needs.
“Komen Philadelphia greatly appreciates what SEAMAAC does in the Philadelphia community for promoting women’s health,” says Elaine I. Grobman, CEO, Komen Philadelphia. “They are a core component of our progress in this fight… to building bridges that save live… and we hope that they continue their fantastic work until the day breast cancer is no longer a threat to any life.”