The Boston Living Center (BLC) responds to the changing needs of its community through education, treatment information, and support services. Below are just some of the services we offer for our members. For a more robust look at our offerings, visit our BLC Connect to Services page.
Food is medicine. The BLC’s focus on nutrition improves the health of individuals living with HIV and AIDS, and those who are experiencing other chronic illnesses and food insecurity. Good nutrition has the power to reduce symptoms and it can minimize medication side effects. And it can provide comfort when it is needed most.
Five days a week, we offer nutritious, hot, congregate meals in our dining room to address food insecurity and to connect members to a supportive, accepting community. 81% of BLC members use our meals program as their primary or secondary food source.
The nutrition department at the BLC also offers cooking classes, food demonstrations, food pantry bags filled with nutritious items for a balanced meal, and other food resources.
Individual and Group Peer Support
Much evidence supports that peer support is a crucial and effective strategy for ongoing health care and sustained behavior change for people with chronic diseases and other conditions.
During Individual Peer Support sessions, our Peer Support staff helps answer questions about medication adherence, addresses skill development around assertiveness and self-advocacy, and connects members to case management, mental health care, substance use disorder treatment, and other supportive services
Peer Support Groups are facilitated discussions in a “safe place” led by Peer Support staff. Included in our array of Peer Support Group opportunities are a long-term survivor support group for women living with HIV/AIDS, a group led in Spanish for our LatinX community, and one for individuals balancing living with HIV with work, work re-entry, and/or higher education.
The following are examples of services and programs we provide to enhance the well-being of our members:
- Group Exercise: Classes consist of a variety of exercises for all levels to help our members stay strong and healthy.
- Yoga classes: Strength building and relaxation techniques can help ease the physical and psychological stress that HIV/AIDS, other chronic illnesses, and stress can place on the immune system.
- Acupuncture: Shown to reduce sleeplessness, pain, medication side effects, and stress.
- Art classes and an open art studio: Studies concur that engagement in the arts increases positive emotions, reduces stress responses, and even improves immune system functioning
All of our programs are subject to change. Visit our Connect to Services page for an updated list of the BLC’s services.