About Chaldeans from Iraq
By Bernadette Talia, LCSW
Chaldeans are a Catholic Christian Ethnic Group originating primarily from Iraq. Like most ethnic groups, they came to this country in search of better economic, religious and political freedom. They sought greater opportunities in the land of the free and are very thankful to be here in the United States. Chaldeans speak Aramaic, a language spoken by Jesus Christ. Chaldeans educated in Iraq also speak and read Arabic. Many Chaldeans are trilingual, speaking Aramaic, Arabic and English. In the U.S. it has been estimated that there are more than 100,000 Chaldeans in Detroit, Michigan and more than 50,000 Chaldeans in California, Washington D.C., Illinois, Arizona and other U.S States.
In the Chaldean culture, Church and family are a central focus of Chaldean life. Family takes precedent over individual needs. Family honor is very important. Social contacts between Chaldean families are frequent and close and it extends not only to immediate family but also to more distant relatives. The family plays a big role in supporting new immigrants; aiding them to this country and helping them adjust once they arrived in the United States. Additionally Chaldeans have a great work ethic. Majority of Chaldeans work long hours striving to become good citizens.
I have been working with Chaldeans and Middle Eastern clients for more than fourteen years. I have had the pleasure of connecting them to resources and orienting them to the new culture. As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, I specialize in trauma, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, and domestic violence. As a trauma therapist, I have been working with Chaldeans and Muslims who have been tortured in Iraq, evicted from their homes, and had to relocate and leave everything behind in a moments notice. The majority of the refugees that arrived in the last seven years have been struggling to adjust to this country. They have been having difficulty finding a job, accessing health care, paying for rent and making ends meet. This has been a major dilemma especially for middle aged, single and elderly Chaldean refugees from Iraq.
For more information about my services, please go to About Me page.
For further information about Chaldeans, please go to Kaldu.org.