About Us

SWAN has always believed in the principles of “Nothing about us without us.” At the heart of our harm reduction work and sex worker advocacy is the belief that those most impacted by stigma and criminalization are most qualified to lead. That’s why we have put together a leadership team with lived experience in sex work, drug use, incarceration, and/or homelessness.

Our work would not be possible without our large network of volunteers and partners. SWAN is not just an organization, but a community.


Mark Jenkins, a service-connected disabled Veteran of the United States Air Force and Founder / Executive Director of the Connecticut Harm Reduction Alliance (CTHRA), formerly the Greater Hartford Harm Reduction Coalition (GHHRC). Mr. Jenkins has worked in the field of Harm Reduction and Public Health for the past twenty-four years, delivering innovative prevention/interventions to the most vulnerable members across the state of Connecticut. Mr. Jenkins started in the field as an AIDS Risk Reduction Outreach Worker (ARROW) for the Perception programs in Willimantic. In his subsequent work with Community Renewal Team (CRT) and the Hispanic Health Council he further cultivated progressive strategies for reaching and delivering services to our most difficult-to-reach populations.

Mr. Jenkins’s work in some of the most troubled neighborhoods in the state has given him a unique perspective of the history of drug trends, the dynamics of associated risks, and effective public health responses. Over a decade on the Staff at AIDS Project Hartford as a Drug Treatment Advocate providing HIV/HCV counseling and testing, syringe exchange, and other harm reduction services. Mr. Jenkins developed a service network of providers that continues to benefit both client and staff of the various providers alike. The breadth and depth of his connection with folks on the street and the service community has made Mark a well respected and widely known individual in this field. He has presented nationally and internationally about best practices for working with the drug using community.

Mark Jenkins

Executive Director, CEO


Brandy Robinson

SWAN Care Coordinator

Lito Rivera

Outreach Supervisor


As of October 2020, SWAN is a program of the CT Harm Reduction Alliance, under the leadership of Executive Director Mark Jenkins.

This means that SWAN is part of the CTHRA team, and CTHRA is part of the SWAN team. It is an incredible opportunity to work as a part of this statewide team of dedicated harm reduction advocates.

Learn more about the CTHRA staff team here.

Jason Crowell

I have lived in CT most of my life, but was born in Waterville ME. I grew up in Norwalk but was sent to New Haven through the judicial system in 1998 and never left. I am a recent MSW Graduate at Southern Connecticut State Universities Master of Social Work Program and completed Gateway Community Colleges Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation Counseling program as an undergrad. I spent the majority of my life as an IV drug user and was homeless here on the streets of New Haven before I began pursuing a higher education in 2015. I plan to continue my education and will begin the Master of Public Health program at SCSU in the Fall of 2021 and then plan to apply for the Doctor of Social Work program at SCSU so that I can continue as an educator. I Have been an artist my whole life with a focus on graffiti and also dabble in many other mediums, play various stringed instruments rather poorly, but have fun doing it and am very proud of my undergrad thesis which is slated to be published this summer. I also continue to pursue research projects such as the current project we are doing in collaboration with Yale and the APT Foundation surrounding fentanyl test strip use and knowledge.

In Memoriam

In July 2020, SWAN suffered the indescribable loss of our friend and beloved community advocate, Jason Crowell. In addition to being SWAN’s Outreach Director, Jason was also a Substance Abuse Counselor with Cornell-Scott Hill Health Center. He was a recent graduate from Southern Connecticut State University’s Master of Social Work program with plans to start his Master of Public Health this fall.

As many know, Jason was a tireless community advocate and harm reductionist. He dedicated himself to supporting and building power with people most marginalized and dehumanized in our world. It is impossible to capture his profound impact on so many lives over the years. He was passionate about ending the war on drugs, opening safe injection sites, and uprooting stigma against drug users and other oppressed people. He fought, humbly and unapologetically, with and for his communities.

We will miss, every day, Jason’s compassionate and courageous spirit. He was a beacon of hope and love to many. We know Jason can never be replaced, but we will do our best to carry forward his legacy and honor his visions of justice and a better world for all.