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Sí a la Vida

Instituto Familiar de la Raza established the first Latino/Chicano-specific HIV program in San Francisco in 1985. Today, Si a la Vida –Integrated HIV Services provides a range of culturally-based services for Latinos at risk of infection, and those living with HIV/AIDS in San Francisco.

Two Sí a la Vida clients

The Latino community faces many various health disparities in San Francisco and throughout the country. Sí a la Vida works to ensure that HIV does not harm any segment of our San Francisco community. Sí a la Vida provides an integrated set of HIV services in response to community need. The program is committed to: reducing the number of new cases of HIV in the San Francisco Latino community, increasing access to health and social services for both HIV-negative and positive clients, and reducing the stigma associated with HIV status, sexual orientation, and gender identity.

Health empowerment and harm reduction are at the center of Sí a la Vida’s work. Helping HIV-negative clients learn how to prevent HIV and helping HIV-positive clients learn to live with HIV are part of an overall effort to promote the health and well-being of our community.

Sí a la Vida collaborates with Mission Neighborhood Health Center to provide increased access to services via various access points from their respective sites. In the past year, the two organizations entered into a joint venture to establish the Latino Wellness Center to provide increased accessibility to Latinos at risk for HIV.

Sí a la Vida provides case management and mental health services at IFR’s main site at 2919 Mission Street and at Clínica Esperanza at 240 Shotwell Street. All other services are provided at the Latino Wellness Center at 1663 Mission Street, Suite 603.

Sí a la Vida

Sí a la Vida provides the following community programs and services:

  • One-on-One Sexual Health/HIV Education: This group is open to gay and bisexual men, men who have sex with men, and transwomen. This service assists individuals to address factors that place them at risk for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. Service approaches may include: answering questions regarding sex, HIV and psychosocial topics; an assessment of risk factors; developing a risk reduction plan; and linking clients to other services. Free condoms and lubricant are provided to clients.
  • Rapid HIV Testing –On Demand: Free confidential HIV testing is provided to gay and bisexual men, men who have sex with men, and transwomen. (See time and location information under the Program Activities tab).
  • Chicas Trans Program: These charlas (interactive groups) are open to transgender/transsexual women, and those who are in the process of gender transition. The group offers a safe space to increase social connections and support, learn about risk reduction practices, employment, and social and legal issues. Chicas Trans groups are held monthly at the Latino Wellness Center, and weekly at the San Francisco County Jail.
  • ACA Entre Nos (Prevention with Positives): Individual and group services are available for HIV-positive gay and bisexual men, men who have sex with men, and transwomen to engage in care, develop safer sexual practices, and improve their quality of life. Groups utilize a model utilizing art-making, community-building, and accessing services.
  • Community PROMISE: This community-level program is open to gay and bisexual men, men who have sex with men, and transwomen. PROMISE promotes judgment-free, sex-positive messages and multimedia materials to increase HIV testing and safer sex practices.
  • HIV Case Management: Open to HIV-positive Latino of all ages, sexual orientations and gender identities, HIV case management provides clients with an assessment of medical, mental health, and practical needs. Ongoing assistance is providing to help clients prepare and adhere to a treatment and coordinating health services. Clients must be San Francisco residents, low income, and uninsured or underinsured.
  • Feroz: A group for English-speaking, gay/bi, bicurious Latino men. It's a supportive and judgment-free space to discuss how to enjoy a healthy life, including sexuality and substance use. A good place to connect with other similar men.
  • Circulo de Amigos/Circle of Friends (HIV+): A support group for HIV positive Latinos(as) who use substances or want support with their recovery. Open to all sexual orientation and gender identities. Facilitated by a trained counselor.
  • Noche Social/Social Night: A chance for gay/bisexual Latino men to make new friends, feel connected to the community and share or learn useful prevention and sex tips.
  • HIV Outpatient Mental Health Services: Open to HIV-positive Latino of all ages, sexual orientations and gender identities, HIV outpatient mental health services include individual and group psychotherapy and substance abuse counseling . Services assist clients improve daily functioning and improve medical incomes. Psychiatric evaluation and medication management services are also available. Clients must be San Francisco residents, low income, and uninsured or underinsured.

Si a la Vida updates its activities on a monthly basis. Be sure to visit us often to obtain the most recent information on our programs. To see a description of the activities listed below, click on the Program Services tab.

Activities in May

  • May 1 : ACA Entre Nos, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 2 : FEROZ Open House, 4:00-7:00 p.m. Everyone is welcome to attend!
  • May 3 : Noche Social, "5 de Mayo," 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 7 : FEROZ, "Hooking up Online," 4:00-6:00 p.m.
  • May 7 : Círculo de Amigos, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 8 : ACA Entre Nos, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 9 : Chicas Trans, 3:00-5:30 p.m.
  • May 9 : Promise, "Messaging," 6:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 10 : Noche Social, "Game Night," 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 14 : FEROZ, "Healing Circle," 4:00-6:00 p.m.
  • May 14 : Círculo de Amigos, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 15 : ACA Entre Nos, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 16 : Chicas Trans, 3:00-5:30 p.m.
  • May 16 : Promise, "Social Media," 6:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 17 : Noche Social, "Movie Night," 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 21 : FEROZ, "Abuse in Relationships," 4:00-6:00 p.m.
  • May 21 : Círculo de Amigos, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 22 : ACA Entre Nos, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 23 : Chicas Trans, 3:00-5:30 p.m.
  • May 23 : Promise, "Shooting Video," 6:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 24 : Noche Social, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 28 : FEROZ, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
  • May 28 : Círculo de Amigos, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 29 : ACA Entre Nos, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 30 : Chicas Trans, 3:00-5:30 p.m.
  • May 30 : Promise, "Uploading/Editing," 6:00-8:00 p.m.
  • May 31 : Noche Social, "Drag Night," 5:00-8:00 p.m.
  • Rapid HIV Testing On Demand We provide confidential testing at any time Monday to Friday 10-6 and Saturday 11-2, in a non-medical setting. Testing is provided at the Latino Wellness Center (1663 Mission Street, Suite 603).

Stories from Sí a la Vida will be coming soon. Stay tuned!

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