WHO WE ARE:
Founded in 1985, HHCLA has helped more than 200,000 people experiencing homelessness through medical, behavioral health and quality of life services.
HOW WE HELP:
Homeless Health Care Los Angeles’s primary mission is to provide innovative strategies for reducing the harms associated with homelessness and substance use.
HHCLA’s programs include physical and mental healthcare, syringe exchange, substance use treatment, overdose prevention, permanent housing, and a hygiene center on skid row.
I first met with Homeless Health Care Los Angeles in 2014. The first time they showed me around their Arts and Wellness Center in Downtown Los Angeles I noticed a map of LA with pins in it on the wall. When I asked what the pins represented, they told me that each one marked the location of where someone's life had been saved using the opioid overdose reversal drug ‘naloxone'. During the following few months, I became aware of just how widespread the opioid epidemic had become and of all of the work that HHCLA were doing to help prevent overdose deaths through naloxone distribution.
Since then I have stayed in touch with HHCLA. I am in awe of everything they do for those suffering from homelessness and/or addiction, and of the understanding, non-judgmental way in which they do it. Rather than a moral failing, they treat addiction as the illness that it is and those suffering from it with the love, care and respect so vital to overcoming it.
Kathryn Prescott, Actor, Producer and last year’s Plato de Oro’s Emcee