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A little history...
In 2006, a Texas non-profit called “Brazos Abiertos” (Open Arms) came to Mérida with a group of teenagers and young adults to develop an international program in Mexico. The project curriculum was a culturally sensitive sex education program that lead to the creation of Brazos Abiertos Internaciónal (Fundación BAI). In its earliest stages, BAI partnered with a community organization, “Ayudar es compartir” (To Help is to Share), to provide educators who conducted the first peer-led education program and provided the facilities to hold the classes. Fundación BAI A.C. is now an independent non-profit agency formally established in Mérida, México in 2007.
Between 2006 and 2008, a significant part of Brazos Abiertos funds went to AIDS shelters in the Yucatán. They soon discovered these funds were paying for a lot of funerals. This realization lead to the formalization of Fundación BAI in Mérida. It began with the development of a peer-to-peer sex education program with prevention at its heart.
Though Fundación BAI began in response to the high rates of HIV/AIDS in Yucatán, we have since expanded our mission and goals to include education about other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and the prevention of teenage pregnancies.
Our mission is to empower the people of the Yucatán to respond to HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted infections (STI's), and teenage pregnancies in order to live healthy lives.
Our vision is to be the catalyst for change where knowledge, prevention and treatment replace fear, discrimination and prejudice.
Our goals are to decrease the spread of HIV and other STI's, and decrease teenage pregnancy rates in the Yucatán.
Served upwards of 40,000 teenagers and adults across the Yucatán Peninsula
Our achievements to date
Hosted or co-hosted over 1,500 health events
Conducted over 100 healthy relationship workshops
Expanded our education programs to reach 10,000 students
Currently supporting and monitoring around 200
HIV positive clients
The who´s who of Fundación BAI...
Dr. Carlos Cabrera, Executive Director
Dr. Carlos Cabrera, born in Mérida, is a medical surgeon graduated from the University of Yucatan. He was awarded Doctor of the Year in 2008 for his achievements working in two remote communities during his tenure of social service. That same year he attended the 17th International AIDS Conference in Mexico City which proved to be a life-changing experience. He then became involved with Fundación BAI as their Medical Director, establishing free rapid HIV testing and counseling programs, and linking HIV+ clients to available treatments. He consolidated BAI´s respected peer-to-peer Education program, taking it from the Mayan villages into the state high school system. He has enhanced our Care programs to now include free psychotherapy and nutrition consultations for our HIV+ clients. Currently he specializes in the care of patients living with HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. To furthered his training in Houston, Texas, with Dr. Gordon Crofoot, a world-renowned HIV specialist. Dr. Cabrera is very proud of what has been achieved to date, but knows there is so much more to do!
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
EVENTS COMMITTEE MEMBERS
Anabella Heredia Chay
Aaron G. Canton Bastarrachea
With your help, Fundación BAI can continue continue to grow.
We receive minimal government funding and rely heavily on the generosity of our supporters.
If you would like to invest in the future of the Yucatán by supporting our programs, please donate today.