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Services for Women

Women’s Care, Prevention and Support Services (WCPSS)

WCPSS is comprised of two HIV/STI prevention and care programs targeting individuals who identify as women who are HIV-positive or HIV-negative but at very high risk for getting HIV: Women Empowering Women (WEW) and Together We Can (TWC). Each program offers various services with different eligibility criteria.

The Women Empowering Women program provides easily accessible harm reduction, recovery readiness, and relapse prevention to women living with HIV or AIDS who are actively using drugs, relapsing, or in early stages of recovery. In addition to individual, family, and group alcohol and drug counseling, this program offers auricular acupuncture and Seeking Safety, an evidence-based intervention to help clients achieve their goals. Harm Reduction Counselors are supported by Client Navigators, who support client engagement and offer service coordination activities to promote access to and maintenance of HIV primary care. Harm Reduction Services focuses on black and Latino individuals who identify as women who may also be unstably housed, immigrants, incarcerated or formerly incarcerated, commercial sex workers, seriously persistently mentally ill, and engaging in high-risk behaviors such as having unprotected sex with men. WEW works closely with primary care providers to coordinate care and ensure viral suppression.
Together We Can (TWC) targets HIV-positive women and high-risk HIV-negative women in New York City, with heterosexual transmission as a main risk factor. TWC provides prevention education and support through group-level interventions and educational workshops to increase women’s knowledge about HIV transmission and improve skills in negotiating safety. For women living with HIV, group and individual counseling, crisis intervention, and referrals provide stabilization, access to HIV treatment, and maintenance in care. Additionally, we offer four evidence-based interventions, which include Healthy Relationships (HR), Women Involved in Life Learning from Other Women (WILLOW), The Future is Ours (FIO), and Salud, Educación, Prevención, y Autocuidado (SEPA). 

HR is offered to encourage women to express their thoughts about relationships, a critical component of sexual health. This intervention emphasizes interpersonal communication skills through example videos, role plays, and modeling. After completing the six-week group, participants can join WILLOW, another group intervention that emphasizes gender pride, informs women how to identify and maintain supportive social networks, teaches coping strategies to reduce life stressors, enhances awareness of STI transmission and HIV reinfection risk behaviors, teaches communication skills for negotiating safer sex and condom use, and helps participants distinguish between healthy and unhealthy relationships.
FIO is a cognitive behavioral intervention meant to help clients learn various techniques to help them identify, articulate, and process personal relationship concerns in the service of risk reduction and safer sex behaviors. SEPA is an intervention tailored to heterosexually active Hispanic women ages 18–44 and offers culturally specific HIV prevention. SEPA incorporates information on healthy relationships, relationship violence, and strategies for self-advocacy. All four of our evidence-based intervention groups will be offered in English and Spanish. Additionally, TWC will offer monthly on- and off-site workshops to women to educate them on safer-sex practices, post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP)/pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) use to prevent HIV transmission, and the use of Narcan for opioid overdose prevention.


For more information, please contact Nelly Melendez, or (212) 367-1325.