December 2019
Quarterly Newsletter
Reflecting on NAPCA's 40 Years: A Mission to Accomplish
Dear friends,

As NAPCA turned 40 on November 1, 2019, our office huddled together to reflect on the people, effort, and vision that’s brought us to 40 years.  We paused to recognize the origins and journey of NAPCA, and asked an important question: What must we do to accomplish our mission? It is our ultimate goal to create impact in a way that renders our mission obsolete.

When I walked into NAPCA’s headquarters in Seattle on November 1, 2018 as the new CEO, I carried with me the memories of the older adults that I have had the privilege of serving in Los Angeles. Many of them shared their experiences of being discriminated against because of their age and ethnicity, the isolation that drives them into depression and loneliness, and the poverty that so powerfully denies them of the dignity they deserve as they age. According to research by USC, more than 7 million older adults are now living below the federal poverty level (annual income of $12,140 for individuals) and that number will increase to 72 million by 2030.

Let this sink in:  In just 10 years, economic insecurity will drive over 70 million older adults in this country to poverty . That’s 20% of the total population in 2030 (and that’s not factoring in the poverty levels affecting younger populations). The aging homeless population is projected to triple during this 10 year span as well.

NAPCA was formed 40 years ago to address these very issues affecting our older adults. In order to be in position to develop creative solutions, we began restructuring our organization to address the years of declining performance of the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP). With remarkable effort by our teams, we were able to stop the program’s drift, and close out our 2018-2019 program year with a 10% increase in performance, successfully reversing course and getting us back on track.

We didn’t stop there. We designed new models for workforce development through public-private partnerships with three major companies - Sodexo , CVS Health , and McDonald's - and we're just getting started.
All of our decisions and changes this year were made to prepare NAPCA to launch our initiatives for impact in 2020. Next year, we'll introduce you to our theory of change and initiatives designed to specifically address economic insecurity of AAPI and diverse aging adults.

40 years later, we believe now more than ever in our organization's role to preserve and promote the dignity and well-being of our country's aging adults. We invite you to stand with us and our older adults as we set forth on a new path towards accomplishing our mission.
NAPCA Partners with Dr. Van Ta Park
University of California San Francisco
With a $3.3 Million award from the NIH National Institute on Aging, Dr. Van Ta Park is pioneering the effort to create the CARE registry for Asian American and Pacific Islanders-health across the lifespan. The three year project's primary goal is to collaborate with academic and community partners to engage, educate, and recruit 10,000 Asian American and Pacific Islanders into a potential registry for Alzheimer's and aging research. Alzheimer's disease is considered the second leading cause of death in California compared to sixth in the nation and the number of Americans living with Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias (ADRD) is expected to increase from 5.7 to 14 million by 2050. This project will ensure AAPIs are engaged, educated, and included in health research. Click here to learn more about the registry.
" I am a hard-working individual."
 Mr. Rodrigo Sabino is a recent immigrant from the Philippines. Mr. Sabino had been with NAPCA's SCSEP for almost six months before being hired by Sodexo. His past experiences, including having managed his own business and caregiving, shape his skills as a leader and diligent worker.
"I cook good food that people enjoy."
Mr. Frank Ruiz has extensive experience in food service, having worked as a cook in various settings, including the old MLK Jr. Hospital.
Job Coaching
As the population of older adults grows exponentially in the next few decades, more of them will be looking to stay employed or reenter the labor force. However, many barriers exist to accessing stable quality jobs, especially for those with limited English proficiency and limited computer literacy. Through our job coaching initiative beginning in Los Angeles and Chicago, NAPCA is building the capacity of older adults to confidently and successfully engage in the job application and interview process. To get involved or to learn more, click here .
40 for 40
Celebrating Our Stories

As we conclude our stories from our 40 for 40 storytelling campaign, click below to watch how Sarah enrolled in the SEE program in 1998 and has now been employed at the EPA for 20 years as a financial assistant. To read and watch more stories of NAPCA's mature workers, please visit our 40 for 40 Campaign page .
NAPCA's Chicago Office Launches Job Club
for Mature Workers
The purpose of the Job Club is to give participants a space to talk about and share their job search experience, provide support, information, new ideas, and resources.  Participant feedback was positive, they love that they can support each other with their job search efforts.  
We would like participants to freely share their ideas and experiences and be supportive of one another in Job Club. A sense of community is also important and it will help them as they continue with their job search. Participant feedback was positive and they seemed thrilled!
Our new office space in Chicago provides workstations for SCSEP participants and a training room equipped with five computers. To celebrate this new, expanded space and additional resources, NAPCA SCSEP launched our first Job Club on November 13 th 2019. This Job Club will run every other week for six sessions and cover a variety of job search topics, including: resume development, goal setting, interview skills, LinkedIn, professionalism in the work place and online job search. SCSEP staff, Harris Lee (Project Director) and Nanako Tatesawa (Program Assistant), are using the new Job Club curriculum created by NAPCA’s Los Angeles SCSEP Team and look forward to providing feedback from participants to ensure the curriculum is applicable and relevant.
Annual SCSEP National Training
NAPCA conducted its annual SCSEP National Training (September 23 - 26) with an introduction to National Employ Older Workers Week. This year, we focused on providing our partners from California, Texas, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, and Pennsylvania with training on a number of topics ranging from developing individual employment plans to working with community agencies to provide support for program participants.
Senior Environmental Employment (SEE) Program
 The NAPCA staff of the Senior Environmental Employment (SEE) program, Ling Wang in Washington, DC, Michelle Kuo in Chicago, and Lois Kohashi-Sinclair in Seattle, recently attended the annual meeting of SEE grantee organizations and Environmental Protection Agency SEE staff in Denver, CO. The two-day meeting covered current status of the program, updated processes and requirements, recent EPA reorganizations, and networking and brainstorming sessions with representatives of SEE program staff in the four other organizations which manage the SEE program throughout the US.  Click here to learn more.
In mid-September, Lois Kohashi-Sinclair, NAPCA National Director for the Senior Environmental Employment (SEE) program, visited Enrollees in Corvallis and Newport, Oregon. SEE Enrollees work at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Research and Development’s Western Ecology Division and Pacific Coastal Ecology Branch, and support EPA staff with administrative and technical expertise in the office and in the laboratories. Enrollees range in service from two weeks to twenty-two years, and the EPA staff are very appreciative of their contributions to the efficient management of their research efforts.  
In December of 2018, NAPCA wrote public comments opposing the Health and Human Services' public charge rule. We recognized this public charge rule would disadvantage AAPI immigrant aging adults.

During the second week of September, NAPCA joined Justice in Aging’s efforts to file amicus briefs in six separate lawsuits in three US District Courts (three in California, two in New York and one in Washington) challenging the Department of Homeland Security’s recently finalized “public charge” rule arguing that it unlawfully targets older immigrants and their families. The amicus brief argues that the rules give negative weights to public benefits – including Medicaid – and of individuals with income less than 125% of the federal poverty level render it impossible for older adults to pass the public charge test. The amicus brief further contends that the Final Rule violates anti-discrimination laws by giving negative weight to an older adult’s disability or chronic health condition and an older immigrant’s limited English proficiency.

In October, district courts blocked the public charge rule from taking effect on October 15. NAPCA will continue to monitor progress and take action as court battles continue.
Media Coverage: Mondaq
AAPI Caregiving Project: Focus Groups
From July to August, with the support of Chinatown Service Center in Los Angeles, NAPCA held focus groups with 35 family caregivers from the Chinese community.

The discussions, which were held in Cantonese, Mandarin, and English, provided us a better understanding of family caregiving experiences and what programs and services can best support their needs in caring for older adults.

Many of the family caregivers we talked to were low-income older adults caring for partners, relatives, or friends who also identify as older adults.

Caregiving experiences were shaped by individuals’ socioeconomic status, gender, age, social network, and family structure. Some things that participants shared included:
  • they feel familial and cultural obligations to take care of their family members or partners.
  • there is a lack of opportunity to talk about their caregiving experiences with healthcare providers.
  • access to in-language and culturally tailored healthcare services were important to them and those they cared for.

The focus groups are part of the Diverse Elders Coalition’s caregiving project which aims to transform the capacity and cultural competencies of the healthcare service network to better address the special needs of those providing family care to diverse elders. NAPCA is a member of the Diverse Elders Coalition, a national organization working to improve aging and caregiving in our communities. The project has been funded by the John A. Hartford Foundation .
NAPCA Welcomes Lisa Thong as Chief Operations Officer
With more than a decade of work across government, nonprofit and private sectors, Lisa has extensive experience leading and managing cross-function teams to deliver on a wide range of programs and campaigns. The daughter of Chinese refugees from Vietnam, Lisa believes in creating access to systems and institutions that often leave behind communities of color. Lisa currently serves as President of the California Board of Barbering and Cosmetology, a consumer protection board, to which she was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown in 2016. Lisa also serves as Chair of APIs Mobilize through which she founded the California Asian American Appointed Officials Network.
NAPCA's Research
Many older Asian Americans struggle to find long-term care in their homes. Research from NAPCA found that 42 percent of Asian Pacific Islanders provide care to older adults compared to 22 percent of the general population. Many studies show that the high percentage reflects the cultural traditions among Asian Americans to care for their older adults. However, they may not have enough "resources to choose their preferred care situation"( NBC News ). NAPCA provides resources for family caregiving on our website. Please find more resources here .

Media Coverage: fivethirtyeight , NBC News , 41NBC
Job Opportunities for Seniors