OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Omaha's Intercultural Senior Center (ISC) is now the first accredited senior center in the state of Nebraska, according to a spokesperson for the facility.
ISC earned accreditation from the National Council on Aging’s National Institute on Senior Centers, becoming one of over 200 accredited senior centers across America and the first in Nebraska to receive national recognition.
“This has been a goal of ISC for several years,” said Executive Director Carolina Padilla, who founded ISC in 2009. “It is a rigorous process and reflects the hard work that the board of directors and staff have put into building a strong and resilient organization for diverse older adults.”
The accreditation process involves documentation for nine standards of excellence including governance, fiscal management, and program planning.
Additionally, the process included interviews with board members, staff members, ISC participants and volunteers.
Virtual tours replaced the site visit component of the review due to COVID-19.
“We consider this a model program,” said Malia Fox, lead of the NISC accreditation team for ISC. “The individualized personal relationships with and among participants is admirable, with cultures coming together, learning English, making friends, learning each other’s language for conversation.”
ISC stands out among accredited centers across the nation for its success in welcoming seniors from different cultures and backgrounds.
The process of accreditation helped build connections among stakeholders and improved internal operations, according to the facility's spokesperson.
“Under Carolina's leadership, ISC has become a unique and vibrant place dedicated to helping seniors from all backgrounds thrive in our community. This accreditation is a recognition of the fantastic work of the ISC staff and will open doors for continued growth and expansion," said Shannon Peter, president of ISC's Board of Directors.
ISC welcomes older adults from around the globe for education, social services, fitness and wellness and friendship.
The senior center also provides transportation and interpretation services. ISC is additionally a meal site for the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging.
Visit their website here or call 402-444-6529 for more information.