By Essey Workie, Regional Administrator, Region III (Philadelphia)
Dahn Guirung is member of the Nepali community in Philadelphia. He came to the United States as a refugee three years ago. During his first eight months in the country, Dahn had health insurance that was funded by the Office of Refugee Resettlement. But when that coverage ended, Dahn was left with no health plan.
Dahn came to an enrollment event hosted by the Southeast Asian Mutual Assistance Associations Coalition (SEAMAAC), a local community-based organization, and the Administration for Children and Families, Region III Office. He came with one goal in mind – health insurance for him and his wife. Dahn wants to make sure his family is healthy and strong so they can invest in their daughter’s future.
Dahn worked with an interpreter to select the right health plan for his family. The plan costs $657. But Dahn and his wife qualified for the tax credit. Dahn puts it best, “A lot of the portion is covered by the tax credit. We pay a little part each month.”
In Dahn’s case, the tax credit saves his family about $630 a month. He and his wife will pay just under $25 a month for a quality health plan. When asked what he would tell his friends and family, he said, “I’m happy we got health insurance. It is easy for me now.”
Essey Workie is the Regional Administrator and principal representative for the Administration for Children and Families, Region III in Philadelphia, Pa. The Region comprises six states: Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. Ms. Workie provides executive leadership and direction to ensure coordination and integration of activities across Head Start, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, child welfare, child care, child support, refugee resettlement and other programs for underserved populations in these states. She also leads key ACF initiatives including extending affordable coverage to the uninsured, promoting responsible fatherhood, preventing human trafficking and engaging community and faith-based partnerships.