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Rosy Vasquez & Sebastian Martinez

Essential services for those experiencing homelessness.

Rosy Vasquez
Rosy Vasquez
Founder and Executive Director
Sebastian Martinez
Sebastian Martinez
Founder and Executive Director
South Bay Street Medicine
San Diego County, CA

South Bay Street Medicine works to bring high impact trauma-informed case management and medical services to people experiencing homelessness wherever they are.

Created by Community Through Hope.

The South Bay represents the most southwestern region of San Diego County, CA. To the west, it reaches communities nestled along the San Diego Bay, and to the south, it rests against the United States-Mexico border. While its beautiful scenic views attract tourists to cities like Chula Vista, it is home to a vibrant Spanish speaking community as well as a significant population of Iraqi, Karen, and Somali refugees.

There are at least 361 people experiencing homelessness and 18,920 people who report being food insecure in the South Bay. This region of San Diego County, CA, represents 6% of the county’s unsheltered population and is a known service desert.

Community Through Hope provides an array of services to address the health & wellness needs of people in the South Bay. These services include mobile showers, food distribution, and a street medicine outreach program — which AMRF invested in.

South Bay Street Medicine provides:

  • Wound care
  • Infectious disease prevention
  • Health education
  • Opiate overdose prevention
  • Linkages to primary care and other life-saving, life-sustaining services to people experiencing homelessness

These critical resources and interventions have helped hundreds of residents of the area gain access to the care they need. This was especially important during the last couple of years as poor Black and Brown communities were enduring through the worst of the pandemic, Community Through Hope was on the frontlines responding to their needs. This work is personal for the team because most of them are from the South Bay area. 

What sets Community Through Hope apart.

Community Through Hope is a woman-founded organization that values equity and representation. 

The majority of the organization’s executive, board and staff are BIPOC. AMRF is committed to supporting small non-profit organizations like Community Through Hope to increase access and advance equity. 

Community Through Hope’s work is at the intersection of trauma-informed, justice-informed and  healing-informed services that use generative practices to engage and provide direct services

CTH is committed to addressing the local unsheltered crisis by:

  • Acting as advocates
  • Calling on elected leaders and stakeholders to prioritize services
  • Reduce stigma and the criminalization of people experiencing homelessness. 

In addition to providing direct services, CTH is known for their accountability rallies, which brings numerous partners and community members together to ensure housing justice continues to be prioritized. 

What sets CTH apart from others is their refusal to include law enforcement in their outreach services.

The CTH model is different from other nonprofit service providers in that its emphasis is on impact, specifically making sure all clients have tangible resources on the other side of every engagement. In addition, their trauma informed, diversity-centered approach ensures that each person is treated with the dignity and respect they deserve.

Street Medicine‘s impact.

Developing and launching the South Bay Street Medicine (SBSM) program has been a game changer for the organization as far as serving the unsheltered community in the area. During a time when criminalization of this population is at an all-time high in San Diego County, South Bay Street Medicine has been able to provide a non-policing trauma-informed alternative that offers life-saving resources to an extremely vulnerable demographic.

The SBSM team, which acts as boots on the ground, meets clients where they’re at to create a relationship of accountability and trust that promotes better health and encourages increased hope between the organization and participants served. 

Community Through Hope has already measured success within this program. Since launching the South Bay Street Medicine program last October, their team has provided emergency relief supplies during more than 1,100 client engagements, 54.3% percent of whom identify as Hispanic and 10.35% percent of whom identify as Black. 

Street Medicine is about bringing high impact trauma-informed case management and medical services to people experiencing homelessness wherever they are.

To learn more, visit their website at communitythroughhope.org.

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