We provide a wide array of services to people who want to reduce drug-related harm in their lives and in their communities.
Our services include the following:
Injecting EquipmentAt any of our outreach locations, you can obtain all of the supplies and equipment necessary for safer drug injection. These supplies include sterile syringes of several different types and sizes, as well as clean cookers, cotton filters, “safety squares” (cotton pads to apply on the wound after injecting), tourniquets, and sterile mix water. At any of our silver van locations, you also can safely and responsibly dispose of any used injection equipment.
ALL VAN LOCATIONSTODAY’S VAN LOCATIONS
NaloxoneAll of our staff and volunteers are authorized to provide you with naloxone, the opioid antagonist that reverses the effects of opioid overdose, as well as training on how to recognize and response to an opioid overdose using injectable naloxone.
Overdose TrainingCRA is the first organized overdose prevention and naloxone distribution program in the country. We provide training and technical assistance to organizations and individuals who want to implement an overdose prevention program. If you would like to receive comprehensive training in overdose prevention, contact us!
Safer Drug Use
Harm Reduction CounselingCRA’S harm reduction therapists can help you deal with a range of concerns such as drug use, anxiety and depression, grief, trauma, psychosis, or difficulties adjusting to life. Our approach is to build on your strengths and to enhance your coping skills. We can also make referrals to providers of medication-assisted treatment, as well as case managers who can help with practical issues, like getting health insurance or finding housing. If you would like to learn more about our counseling services or make an appointment to see a therapist, contact us!
HARM REDUCTION COUNSELING
Referral Into TreatmentAt any of our locations, CRA staff can help assist you in finding substance use treatment programs to meet your needs.
Smoking and Snorting MaterialsWe are committed to meeting the safer use needs of people who use drugs in different ways. In addition to the array of injection materials, we have safer smoking and safer snorting materials. Did you know that offering safer smoking materials reduces HIV and viral hepatitis risk? Our safer smoking kits include a glass pipe, a rubber mouthpiece (for preventing burned lips), and a steel mesh filter. Our safer snorting kits include three straws, a plastic card, and a plastic razor. In addition to the materials contained in the kits, participants also have access to additional safer use supplies on an as needed basis which include items such as wound creams, vitamin c, alcohol pads, and sterile water to name a few.
Alliance for Collaborative Drug Checking — Real TimeCRA provides real-time drug checking using spectrometer machines and fentanyl test strips. This helps identify if heroin, pills, methamphetamine, cocaine, MDMA or other drugs have been adulterated with fentanyl. Combined with substance use management counseling, drug checking can prevent overdoses. We can test packaging and cookers that have only been used once. Spectrometry testing is currently only available during 6 outreach locations; fentanyl test strips are available at all of our locations.
HIV and HCV Counseling, Testing & Linkage to CareWe offer on-site free HIV and HCV rapid tests to all participants and all staff are trained in phlebotomy to do blood draws for confirmatory testing at the same time.
If you are interested in scheduling a free testing event with CRA in the city or surrounding suburbs please use our testing event contact page.
Safer Sex SuppliesWe provide a variety of different condom (receptive and insertive) and barrier options for sex activities plus silicone and water- based lubricants for maximum enjoyment.
Every Wednesday our lovely, dedicated volunteers gather to pack safer drug use kits and various outreach materials to promote the health and wellbeing of people who use drugs in Chicago and beyond. Without these folks, we couldn’t do what we do.
Have you thought about volunteering for CRA, find out what is involved on out volunteering info page.