Elder Refugee Program

DRCOG works in partnership with the Colorado African Organization and the Aurora Center for Active Adults to provide the Elder Refugee Program. The program serves refugee elders from a wide variety of countries such as Bhutan, Burma, Somalia, Eritrea and Ethiopia. Activities reduce social isolation, increase integration and community connections, and promote overall health and wellness. The program provides participants and their families with information about services for elders, as well as helping service providers enhance their skills in working with refugees. It is funded through the Older Americans Act (OAA) and a grant from the Colorado Refugee Service Program.

DRCOG’s Elder Refugee Program strives to: 

  • Provide the Denver region’s elder refugees with information and assistance and improved access to OAA programs;
  • Ensure inclusion of the elder refugee voice and perspective in future planning for older adults in the region;
  • Fund programs for elder refugees at the Aurora Center for Active Adults, including exercise classes and recreation; and
  • Supply cultural competency training and cross-training for both traditional aging service providers and the refugee resettlement agencies in the Denver region.

Interested in learning how we developed our program? Want to know more about serving these populations? Click here for best practices documents. 

Who is a refugee?
A refugee is someone who "owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality, and is unable to, or owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country." (UNHCR)