The Repository @ St. Cloud State

Open Access Knowledge and Scholarship

Date of Award


Culminating Project Type

Starred Paper

Degree Name

Gerontology: M.S.


Program in Gerontology


School of Health and Human Services

First Advisor

Phyllis Greenberg

Second Advisor

Rona Karasik

Third Advisor

Jennifer Connor

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Keywords and Subject Headings

Refugee, Somali, Healthcare, Aging, Mental Health, Culture and Customs


A refugee is defined as a person that flees their home due to war. They give up their homes, their lifestyle, and sometimes even family members in order to reach safety and security like the rest of us enjoy. One group of people, the Somali’s, have been refugees for almost 25 years. The Somali’s have been coming to countries around the globe as refugees since 1991 due to the ongoing civil war that has torn their home country apart. The United States started resettling the Somali refugees and brought them through the UNRHC and mostly Christian NGO’s located inside of the United States. One of the largest populations of Somali’s in the United States is in the state of Minnesota where the author resides. Meyran Omar, a Somali and a healthcare worker, researched the Somali people and their experiences or difficulties with the healthcare system in the West and compiled a healthcare workers handbook to be used when providing services to Somali and refugee clients in a health care setting. Her research highlights the refugee experiences, mental health, aging, and ecdemic diseases that are new to the Somali population. She also has included some of the customs and cultural aspects of her people from food to dress and aspects of religion that are important for healthcare workers to understand to provide the best services to their clients.

Omar Guidebook.pdf (889 kB)
Somali Health Care Guidebook