Established in 1997, Fundación Amistad is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation designed to facilitate and foster mutual understanding and exchanges between the United States and Cuba. Central to this is an ongoing effort to increase mutual awareness of each country's history, culture and society, and to facilitate programs that will improve the overall state of youth, women and their families in Cuba. Since its inception, Fundación Amistad has actively promoted exchanges between Cubans and Americans in many areas, including medicine, education and the arts. This diversified activity has helped to dramatically increase communication between the two countries and has assisted the Cuban people through academic, scientific, medical and cultural programs and exchanges.

The president and director of Fundación Amistad is Maria de Lourdes (Luly) Duke. For several decades, she has been actively involved in working with New York City's inner city youth from disadvantaged backgrounds. She is integrally associated with Boys Harbor, Inc., also known as the Harbor for Boys and Girls, a non-profit multi-faceted educational agency located in East Harlem, where she serves as Vice President of the Board. Luly Duke is a native of Cuba, having immigrated to the United States many years ago. Because of her continuing commitment to the emotional, social, and educational well-being of the underprivileged, she founded Fundación Amistad; and has directed her personal energies and professional expertise towards helping youth, women and their families in Cuba.

Fundación Amistad has often come to the aid of indigent Cuban women and children through numerous humanitarian programs. Over the years, Fundación has organized many delegations to Cuba, comprised of educators, psychiatrists, physicians and social workers, to visit schools, clinics and hospitals and to offer professional expertise, training and exchanges. These delegations have evaluated the challenges these institutions face and have worked with their counterparts in Cuba and the United States to develop solutions to them. Fundación Amistad has also sponsored or participated in numerous short courses, symposiums as well as many cultural and academic exchanges.


© 2003 Fundación Amistad 845 Third Avenue, 19th Floor New York, NY 10022