La Maestra Foundation, with funding from Bravo Foundation, Develops Cultural Diversity Awareness Training for Universities, teaching hospitals and corporations Diversity Awareness Training for universities, teaching hospitals and corporations so students, medical staff and others who serve diverse populations understand challenges and benefits of diversity in relation to community health and social determinants.
La Maestra &HCDC launch the I Choose Recovery! (ICR) program to offer affordable bridge housing and integrated services necessary for men in recovery transitioning from rehab programs or jail to re-enter society with a clean start. ICR is designed to be more than just a sober living environment, providing a variety of integrated services including medical, dental and mental/behavioral health, transportation assistance, and more in collaboration county Mental Health Services, Parole Board, Veterans Village of San Diego, and San Diego American Indian Health Center. In its first year, ICR asses over 230 men and links to services, providing housing to 83, 30% of whom are veterans.
Residents of ICR work in microenterprises run by La Maestra Foundation, to develop their skills in professions including building security, landscaping, green janitorial services, laundry/linen services, construction cleanup, hauling, parking attendant and valet services, a flower shop and a secondhand boutique. These Microenterprises follow a unique model – the job supervisors work with housing managers, mental health and medical providers, and case managers to guide each trainee/employee in addressing needs along the road to self -sufficiency which include improvement of physical and emotional health; proper hygiene and appearance; self-esteem and healthy relationship building; goal setting and other life skills such as time management, problem solving, effective communication, organization, and conflict resolution. Working environments and policies are also designed and run to be culturally sensitive and to promote healing. Trainee/employees gain marketable skills and are able to start building a resume, so they can eventually move on to regular employment.