MENAHRA and CSOs Visit to Porto

 

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The Middle East and North Africa Harm Reduction Association (MENAHRA) and CSOs MENA representatives from five different countries from the field of harm reduction (Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia) in collaboration with APDES organization conducted a visit to Porto, Portugal from 14 to 16 October 2019.

The study tour aims to enhance the knowledge of the representatives to further develop services for Key affected Populations such as PWUD with respect to harm reduction by acquiring the know-how on how to:

1. Generate new innovative Harm drug/Harm Reduction programs
2. Plan action-training and advocacy within harm reduction services with respect to traditional authorities and social movements
3. Visit the best Harm reduction centers and be introduced to the available programs in the area

 

Day 1:

Our 1st day started with a visit to APDES is a Portuguese non-profit association promoting sustainable development. It works with vulnerable communities with the objective of improving access to health, employment and education, enabling populations and strengthening social cohesion.

The second visit was to CTD center which is a clinic with psychologists and therapists. CTD has 20 years of experience within five areas in Portugal as they work with schools and teachers and create awareness campaigns in coordination with the MOPH.

The third visit on day one was to CASO center; funded by a drug user and an HIV positive late fifty’ gentleman. It is a small academy for drug users – it works on giving hope for drug users and train them on skills to find jobs.

Day 2:

The 2nd day began with APDES again as all the participants went on an actual outreach visit of five different sites in a well-equipped mobile unite. Then the next visit was to PIAN center for women drug users: they present Sexual health services and mental health services (psychiatrist) Sexual health services at its best. There is a kid's area section/pace for mothers that use drugs.
The third visit on day two was to CAIS center for the homeless (A daily stay area). This center is auto financed by the homeless themselves as they do some handmade artwork and recycled artwork/art crafts.

Day 3:

We started the 3rd day with a visit to Casa Da Vila nova- a homeless center dorm that presents 17 homeless drug users and alcoholics for both females/males. This center helps them to create skills and to find jobs. The center also does outreach work and they do not close all year.

The last visit was to Médecin du Monde – Medicos do Mundo which is a group of experts taking care of drug users: nurses/psychiatrists/doctors/health workers. They have a mobile unit for tests and they distribute kits.

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