Our Work

Immigrant Survivors Project

In order to strengthen services for immigrant survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault in South Carolina, PASOs worked with the South Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault (SCCADVASA) and the South Carolina Immigrant Victim Network (SCIVN). Objectives for the Strengthening Services for Immigrant Survivors Project included:

  1. Addressing systemic barriers that affected immigrant survivors that needed culturally and linguistically appropriate services for domestic violence and/or sexual assault by developing and disseminating a set of best practices.
  2. Sharing creative solutions that successfully decreased barriers to access and encouraged immigrant survivors to utilize domestic violence and sexual assault programs.
  3. Initiating a cultural shift in the way that services were delivered to immigrant survivors in South Carolina by providing education, project support and individualized technical assistance to domestic violence and sexual assault programs.

Puentes Project

The objectives of the Puentes (Bridges) Project were to:

  1. Empower grassroots Latino leaders or “Community Ambassadors” with the necessary skills to educate their peers, facilitate access to resources, and bring ideas for change from their communities to health service providers and decision-makers.
    • A team of 30 Latino Community Ambassadors were trained in vital maternal and child health information, leadership and communication skills, English language skills, adult teaching methods, and navigation of resources and health services. 
    • Each Ambassador facilitated neighborhood meetings, during which they shared crucial maternal and child health information in a culturally acceptable format designed by them. They listened to community members as they shared their experiences, needs and concerns, and helped others navigate and gain access to health resources.
  2. Provide more capacity to local health care providers and policy-makers so they can effectively respond to the maternal and child health care needs of the growing Latino community.
  3. Facilitate and sustain improvements both in the Latino community and in local maternal and child health services sustained as a result of bridges constructed through the Puentes Project. The Puentes Project was part of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Local Funding Partnerships initiative and was also funded by a team of local funding partners, including: the New Morning Foundation, the Sisters of Charity Foundation, the Knight Foundation Advised Fund of Central Carolina Community Foundation, Palmetto Health, Providence Hospitals and Lexington Medical Center.

PASOs Preconception Health Outreach and Education Strategy

Research indicated a great need for preconception health education in South Carolina.

  • Reproductive health disparities can be most effectively addressed before pregnancy occurs.
  • The newly immigrated Latino population has high fertility rates and low access to reproductive health information and services, resulting in significant disparities.

PASOs responded to the need by incorporating a preconception health outreach and education strategy into its program model, using best practices and community input.

Strategy Priorities

  • Folic Acid in preventing Neural Tube Defects (NTDs)
  • Reproductive anatomy
  • Methods of contraception
  • Family planning and pregnancy spacing
  • Access to health care services

Preconception Health Strategy Components
• Culturally Appropriate Messages
• Community Outreach
• Health Education Workshops
• Engaging Materials
• Community Health Workers (Promotores)
• Partnership with Greenwood Genetic Center for Folic Acid Promotion

For more information on PASOs Preconception Health Strategy, Julie Smithwick at julie@scpasos.org