“Through a survey and interviews conducted by Asra: The Panjabi Alcohol Resource in 2020, we learned what challenges individuals are facing regarding alcohol use, what support they are accessing (if any), and how these supports are helping or hindering community members.
Our survey and interviews show a need for resources that are created for Punjabi communities with their specific needs, strengths, and prior experiences in mind. Throughout this report, we highlight the challenges that Punjabi communities are facing, how those challenges are being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the communities’ access to resources, and the ways that those resources have failed to serve their needs. We hope that the conversations presented throughout this report push us to develop culturally humble resources that acknowledge the specific challenges and strengths of Punjabi communities.
We wanted to highlight the formulation of an ideal support system for those interlocutors that we had the pleasure of interviewing. Those that we spoke to highlighted the experiences of migration, poverty, and intergenerational trauma as ones that are key to be understood by healthcare providers and support systems. The ideal support system for them would be a space that is understanding of the fact that even though we all come from the same cultural background, we are a diverse community- from our heterogeneous experiences of mental health to when, how, and why our respective families immigrated. They would want separate spaces based upon the relationships people had to those they cared for – a space for people caring for their siblings, a place for young people caring for their parents, a space for spouses. In terms of the space for those caring for parents, they highlighted gender as a key player as there are different expectations of a son caring for a father vs. a daughter caring for a father. The community members also highlighted that they wanted to explore how spaces can be created for people who are not yet at the stage of having these conversations comfortably and asked: how can we create something that is more accessible, comfortable, and possibly anonymous?
While this ideal only reflects a few, as we move to create more accessible and generous spaces for Punjabi communities, conversations like the one above are necessary to keep in mind so that support can be accessed.
The entire report can be found here.”