WHERE WE STAND
South Asian Behavioral Health and Training (SABH) Foundation is a registered non-profit organization 501(c) (3) with the Secretary of State of California. In 2009, it was founded under the leadership of Dr. Harmesh Kumar, who is a licensed clinical neuropsychologist in the Bay Area and is working on the cause of others for the last 37 years. Notwithstanding, the SABH Foundation is helping our seniors (Physical and Mental health) and people with disabilities (Developmental, Physical and Mental disabilities) throughout California.
Dr. Kumar began his professional career as a social scientist (psychologist) with the World Health Organization (WHO)’s Collaborative Center for Mental Health and Research, Department of Psychiatry, and College of Nursing, PGIMER, Chandigarh, India. He taught general psychology to Masters and Bachelors level nursing students. Dr. Kumar also served from 1984 to 1986 as Assistant Editor of the Indian Journal of Clinical Psychology, an official journal of Indian Association of Clinical Psychologists which has been published for the past more than two decades.
Dr. Kumar migrated to the United States in 1990. He taught in the U.S. at Rosebridge Graduate School of Integrative Psychology to graduate students. Dr. Kumar is devoted to research in the neurobehavioral and neuropsychological areas and received a grant of $100,000 from the National Institute of Health, USA.Dr. Kumar served as president of Federation of Indo-American Associations of Northern California (2005-2006). He is also currently serving on the Executive Committee of Interfaith Council of Contra Costa County. Since January 3, 2006 to July 2010, he served as a commissioner for the City of Concord on the Human Relations Commission, thus serving local community. He served as its Chair. He was a member of the Board of Directors of Monument Community Partnership (MCP) from 2003-2005. He was a trustee of the Board of Trustees of Ik Onkar Peace Foundation.
It was Cooperation Circle of United Religions Initiative. As Trustee, he attended World Parliament of Religions in July 2004, in Barcelona, Spain to spread the message of universal love. He also serves on the Advisory Council of India Community Center (www.icc.org).
Dr. Kumar has been organizing Annual Spring Diversity Festival (Baisakhi) in Todos Santos Park Plaza in downtown Concord, since April 2004 to build bridges in different faith and ethnic communities.
He has been participating in free community health fairs organized by various local charitable organizations such as the Federation of Indo-American Associations (FIA) and the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPIO). He also served as the Chair of the Allied Health Professionals’ chapter from 1994 to 1995. Dr. Kumar also chaired a committee on cross-cultural issues in neuropsychology of Northern California Neuropsychological Forum from 1995 to 1997.
Dr. Kumar was honored in August 15, 2002, with Certificate of Recognition by the Senate of State of California for his services to the welfare of the citizens of California. He was also honored with HIND RATTAN (Jewel of India) AWARD in 1996 by The Non-Resident-Indians Welfare Society of India for his achievements and contributions to the well being of the Indo-American community as well as to the mainstream society in the United States.
Dr. Kumar has been deeply involved in the local interfaith communities especially Punjabi-Sikh Community to spread the message of love and universal well-being as preached by all Sikh Gurus, Saints and helping in promoting Punjabi culture and language among American born children to connect them with their roots while incorporating the positive aspects of American way of life.Letter from Dr. Harmesh Kumar SABH Foundation Inc. is bringing ancient bio-psycho-social and spiritual humanistic model in taking care of our family members and also of the seniors trusted in our care their loved ones. I became more aware of the needs of caring for seniors because of my father who never got sick in his life suddenly became sick at the age of 72 with abdominal infection and was hospitalized for more than one month and then spent more than a month in the Skilled Nursing Facility. I was acutely aware being a psychologist of the financial, physical and emotional drainage it took on my part along with the pressures on my wife, daughter and my siblings living in other countries.With the Grace of God my father was able to recover after few months in a Nursing Home and then transferring into our assisted living facility where he received services in his own language, cultural context and ate the ethnic food he liked. It gave me a renewed confidence that with adequate supportive services even older people can get on their feet and can function more effectively. The staff at our facilities is so loving, nurturing and caring but at times they became emotionally drained. We were able to recognize these individual human needs and were able to create ongoing on-site emotional support system for the staff and family members.
I also observed that over minor problems seniors were being sent to the hospital emergency draining lot of tax-payers resources. With the help of the team efforts of careful observations of the care-givers, consulting nursing staff and Medical Director we were able to identify some common physical signs which resulted in behavioral challenges of some seniors, and also some medications side-effects along with familial issues contributing to some tense moments between the staff and the residents. The identification and understanding of these small issues boost the morale of the staff and lead to astonishing positive results in the well-being of the residents and also in the confidence level of the family members.
It created an overall peaceful environment in our facilities and allowed seniors to enjoy an active, healthy and quality lifestyle. Our activity programs, fun outings, fresh daily meals based on the recommended diet, and weekly live entertainment and spiritual groups are giving a very positive and humane environment to our residents, their families and a sense of belonging to our staff to make all our life journeys more meaningful.
I am proud of the loving, caring and nurturing and therapeutic milieu we have created at our facilities. Our multi-lingual staff gives a colorful fragrance of a loving global and true American way of living where people from all over the world can come and create their own gardens with specific smells of their own ethnic, cultural, foods, and able to incoporate richness of a cohesive global village where everyone is respected no matter what race, nationality, sexual orientation, religion, age or disability. It is so enriching to learn from the wisdom of our seniors and with a mission that it is a God’s gift to us to be able to serve other human beings in a loving and nurturing way, thus creating not only harmony in their lives, in our lives but in the world as a Global village.