Humanitarian Aid Programs

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Make a Tax-Deductible donation towards Crossroads Acupuncture’s humanitarian aid projects  easily with your credit card or Pay Pal.  Or you can send donations to Crossroads Acupuncture 1320 S. Solano, Las Cruces, NM 88001.

Crossroads Community Supported Healthcare offers support for humanitarian aid projects, both locally in the borderlands, and in Latin America, in response to violence, poverty, and human rights abuses.

The acupuncture-based programs that Crossroads has been a part of include the disaster response in the aftermath of the 2019 El Paso mass shooting, the current migrant caravan and refugee situation in the US/Mexico Border Region, Flores de Juarez in response to violence in Mexico, Promotores Descalzos in Nicaragua, and Indigenous community health projects in the Sierra Tarahumara region of  Mexico, and Coban, Guatemala.

Our vision

With a vision of helping communities in the Americas become more resilient to responding to their own healthcare problems, Crossroads has trained over 200 health workers health promoters in acupuncture techniques in Mexico, Central America and the US/Mexico border region since 2011.  We help these community workers to establish and sustain free community clinics which offer care for migrants, the homeless, survivors of violence and trauma, and other underserved populations in the borderlands.    

Flores de Juarez

Our humanitarian aid efforts began in 2011 when we were invited by groups in Cd Juarez, Mexico to help respond to violence in the region. Using the NADA ear acupuncture model for humanitarian aid, we started Flores de Juarez or “Flowers of Juarez” to leverage volunteer support towards the empowerment of local community groups.  Our role has evolved into a commitment  to the long-term sustainability and comprehensive advancement of community health and wellness in the border region.  We assist with health promotion training, leadership development and helping local groups build the capacity to create cooperatively-led, grassroots, community-supported projects.  

Since 2017, volunteers of Flores de Juarez have started a Refugee Care Program, offering free services to the growing number of refugees and migrants in the borderlands coming from other parts of the world.  The acupuncture-based care that we offer focuses on techniques to address trauma, addictions and mental wellness.

Addressing root causes of migrant health disparities in Central America

Our work with refugees has drawn us into the stories and the affirmation of their dignity and right to healthcare and safety.   As we witness a growing number of migrants arriving at the border, we see that the humanitarian crisis in Central America is what has forced thousands to fleeing violence and poverty and seek safety and healthcare.  We stand in solidarity with these communities.  

Many of the refugees we offer care for are from Nicaragua and Guatemala, which rank as the poorest and some of the most unstable countries in the region, and recent civil unrest has impacted the ability for both national and outside aid projects to help people coping with both mental health and medical problems. Poverty prevents 30% of the population from getting healthcare, and not enough health workers are trained to provide care.  

Expanding our model in Latin America

We currently are exploring how the community supported healthcare model  can be of support for humanitarian efforts currently addressing the root causes of migration in Guatemala and Nicaragua.  

In collaboration with local groups in Nicaragua in 2019, Crossroads launched a new health promotion school, training local community workers operating in places where severe health disparities are prevalent. Our goal is to replicate our model in Nicaragua, and help these local community to establish and sustain health services for people in rural and urban areas affected by trauma. 

This work is only possible through the donations we received.  Consider making a tax-deductible donation to this project in Nicaragua, through our GoFund Me Campaign.

More about our work in the borderlands

Our humanitarian aid program was founded out of relationships with community groups in  Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.  The healthcare disparities in the borderlands can also be seen in other communities that we work with in Latin America.  Fr Luis Escudero Gallo, Director of Social Ministries and Caritas, Catholic Diocese of Ciudad Juarez, outlines the situation in Juarez, and the impact of our program:

“Ciudad Juarez is a city on the border region of the US, on the border next to El Paso, Texas.  It has been very affected by some distinct social problems.  Possibly the most well known of these problems was the violence brought on by drug trafficking that made Juarez one of the most violent cities in the world.  Between 2008 and 2011 more than 10,000 homes suffered a loss of their family.  Also Juarez was known around the world for the feminicides. Juarez is a city with a high index of poverty.  The economy is based on the maquila 

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Volunteer offers free acudetox services for stress and trauma relief.

industry, but the low salaries for workers cause the poverty to rise.  A study at a local university in the US offered these statistics:  The number of people living in poverty rose from 100,000  to 494,000, and out of this total, 62,000 are living in extreme poverty.  The 494,000 represent 37% of the Juarez population, who are lacking basic necessities. This means that in Juarez out of the near 1,335,000 inhabitants of whom 494,726–37%  are in a situation of poverty, lacking one or more basic necessities: income, health, education, social security, a home, basic social infrastructure or access to food.

In 2011, Flores de Juarez brought together more than 12 organizations within the city to train them in adjunctive services, to provide support to families in their health needs, especially for support for stress and depression that are realities in many sectors of our community as a consequence of poverty and violence. During this time, more and more people have become involved in the project and received training in this community services. The organizing work improves each time and they have a project full of enthusiasm and generosity and created by volunteers.  In the Diocese we are very thankful and blessed for this project.  The social ministry in this Diocese favors this initiative that allows us to offer an integral support for the needs of people in our communities, especially the poorest of our people.”

 

Key Components of Crossroads’ Humanitarian Aid Projects

  • How we train:  Competency based apprenticeship14292500_10153906292997467_6632767590013403243_n
    • Building relationships over time
    • Meeting students where they are at
    • Constant process of evaluation and assessment
    • Building Sustainable programs
    • Promoting self-autonomy on all levels
  • Who we train: Volunteer health promoters
    • From marginalized communities
    • Various levels of education and experience in health care
  • What we teach: Simple, safe, effective protocols cost-effective service delivery
    • Supplies for ongoing clinical services are inexpensive
    • Acupuncture needles:  20-40 cents or less per treatment
    • Moxa:  25 cents per treatment
    • Primary cost is training

Outcomes  

  • Over 50,000 treatments provided since 2011 within community centers, women’s groups, homeless shelters, mental health programs, and orphanages
  • Over 200 health promoters trained and offering care for underserved groups
  • Dozens of autonomously operated, volunteer-run, community centers within low-income neighborhoods, offering free healthcare for people regardless of ability to pay
  • Tuition is subsidized through Crossroads, offering 100% scholarships

What trainings does Crossroads offer for health promoters?

Volunteer-Based

This program is volunteer-based, we have dozens of helpers assisting:  volunteer teachers, as well as health providers and translators.   We have had dozens of volunteer health professionals travel to this region to assist.

If you are interested in volunteering, learn more here.

Sponsors and Community Partners:

SPONSORS: Institute of Traditional Medicine, The Latitude Foundation,  Lhasa OMS, Acurea Acupuncture Supplies, Acu-Market

PARTNERS: Catholic Diocese of Cd Juarez and Caritas, Catholic Diocese of Tarahumara, Promotores Descalzos of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, Hermanos por Salud and Tierra y Vida in Nicaragua

“There is a substantial need for additional medical services in many parts of the world, and especially in those areas, such as Juarez, where social and economic conditions have hampered development of medical facilities and limited the scope of projects that support local needs.  One of the types of medical aid that has become available to the Americas in recent years is acupuncture, a method of health care that has developed over many centuries in Asia and has now spread to western nations.  Acupuncture offers a particular value in yielding quick results at low cost for health problems that have become endemic.  Flores de Juarez is a prime example of how acupuncture services can take root in communities in distress that require additional medical resources.  This community organization provides acupuncture services to the people and, as importantly, trains others to become acupuncture providers so that the health services can be greatly expanded over time.”  

–Dr. Subhuti Dharmandanda, PhD, Founder and Director, The Institute for Traditional Medicine and Preventive Health Care, Inc. (ITM)

Media about Crossroads Humanitarian Aid Programs

Safe Space, Solidarity, and Something more than Air Conditioning, Commencement Address for graduating classes of the Oregon College of Oriental Medicine, 2018, by Ryan Bemis, Executive Director of Crossroads Acupuncture.

Madness Radio interview by Will Hall with Crossroads in the Sierra Tarahumara area of Mexico.

A million tiny daggers, Essay in Acid West by Joshua Wheeler

NPR Story on Crossroads’ response to El Paso shooting in 2019, by Anthony Moreno

Acupuncture for Healing in Border Communities, by Molly Molloy on Latina Lista 

Building community in the Valley of Sorrows:  America Magazine

Residents in violent border city use acupuncture to cope with trauma, by Angela Kocherga and Hugo Perez on the Border News Bureau

Article on in the Las Cruces Sun News, by Damien Willis

How you can support

1.  Donate online by using your credit card. 

A tax-deductible receipt from our 501c3 non-profit organization will be emailed to you upon receipt of your online donation.  Please contact us for questions about donations.

Checks may also be sent to: Crossroads Community Supported Healthcare, 1320 S Solano Las Cruces, NM 88001

2.  Get acu yourself 

The easiest way to support our humanitarian aid work is to come for a treatment at Crossroads

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making healthcare affordable to people of all income levels

Acupuncture.  As a non-profit organization, we re-invest our surplus revenues into our capacity building program.  By receiving acupuncture treatments yourself, and inviting others to also come receive a treatment, at the same you’ll also be assisting your neighbors in the border region.

3.  Volunteer!

Without volunteers, our humanitarian aid projects would not exist.  In particular we are needing volunteer acupuncturist teachers and educators with bilingual capacity.  Click here to learn more about our volunteer needs, and how to apply. 18301453_10154565486552467_7828859418010475247_n.jpg

Questions?

Email crossroadsacu@gmail.com or call 575-312-6569.

 

 

2 Responses to “Humanitarian Aid Programs”

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