Health Links connects with Somali community

11 Aug 2016 Amyholgate

We have been busy connecting with the local Somali community to make sure patients are getting the healthcare support they need.

Our latest outreach session took place in a bustling Easton café . It was run by our Health Links worker, Mohamed, who was there to translate, raise awareness about services, and give support and advice.

As a Health Links worker, Mohamed has worked hard to forge close bonds with local Somali people. For many he is their primary link with the medical community.

One patient said: “He accompanies me to all of my hospital appointments and interprets everything for me. I couldn’t live without him.” Another explained: “Mohamed supports me with my healthcare and helps me with translation. My healthcare requires numerous GP appointments. When I receive my prescriptions I need Mohamed to tell me what the medicine is for and how many times a day I require it. He is always on hand and we can always find him around this area when we need his help – we would be lost without him.”

Mohamed has been living in Bristol for 19 years but was born in Somalia. He loves Bristol because of the diverse culture and the strength of his community. “I understand the challenges of moving to another country very well. Living in a country permanently and not being able to communicate well is a constant struggle for many Somalians. Health Links workers are often a lifeline for people. I don’t think of it as work – I’m happy to have the opportunity to help others.”

Our Health Links service provides a language support and advocacy service in Bristol and the surrounding area. For more information contact Health Links, Charlotte Keel Health Centre, Seymour Road, Easton BS5 0UA; tel 0117 902 7145; or find out more here.

Mohamed (right) explains medications to carer Hussein.