Amigos Apoyando Amigos

Luz Southside Partnership –> Amigos Apoyando Amigos

Amigos Apoyando Amigos

Contact: Marylyn Valencia, Promotora Community Coordinator
E-mail: [email protected]

Luz Southside Partnership
3819 South Evans, Suite 304
Tucson, AZ 85714
(520) 294-7620
(520) 294-1142 fax

The Amigos Apoyando Amigos (“Friends Helping Friends”) project is a collaborative program of COPE Behavioral Services Inc., Luz Social Services Inc., Compass Health Care, and The Pima County Health Department. It is a three-year, early intervention, harm reduction outreach project funded by the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment, SAMHSA. The Amigos Apoyando Amigos project began in October 1999 and will end in September 2002. This project was designed to annually target 1,000 Hispanic Intravenous Drug Users and Non-Intravenous Drug users and their sex partners for outreach, primary health care services, HIV/STD testing, and substance abuse services.

The goals of the Amigos Apoyando Amigos project are to reduce transmission rates for HIV, STDs, hepatitis, and tuberculosis; increase the accessibility and utilization of primary and substance abuse healthcare; and improve the health status of members of the target population. The project’s objectives include:

  • Develop problem- and intervention specific curriculum materials for use with the target population based upon focus group findings and other available health problem indicator data.
  • Recruit and train community members to participate in outreach and health education program activities.

This project offers promotion services and education classes including: health education, risk reduction education, peer leadership training, street outreach, HIV/STD/ TB/HEP screening, substance abuse treatment, detoxification services, linkage and transportation to health care services, and risk reduction supplies. Medical and social model detoxification services are provided for participants needing inpatient detoxification form alcohol and other drugs. Acupuncture Detoxification is available on an outpatient basis.

Acudetox is effective with helping to reduce craving, anxiety and depression. Our services also provide confidential screening and family planning services. The Amigos Community Education program provides forums for neighborhood groups, businesses, and public administrators for the purpose of health education and substance abuse treatment resources in South Tucson.

Currently we are also working with women at the Pima County Jail focusing on different issues such as alcoholism, substance abuse, and empowerment through different discussion groups. Since the project has started, more than 1,000 community members have participated annually, with a total of over 4,000 members since September 1999. This includes referrals, screenings, risk assessment and reduction, recruitment, and education.