WHY? 

Atlanta needs the Friendship Center because every human being deserves to live a life of dignity.  Every human being needs not only food and shelter but also community and purpose. 

Adults marginalized by poverty and mental illness are an often neglected and unseen population.  The majority of Friendship Center participants live in personal care homes.  Proper treatment, which is essential, is often out of reach because it is too expensive and treatment systems are often difficult to navigate.  Our society often denies the dignity, gifts, and talents of people who are different.  Every human being needs a community and a purpose, and the Friendship Center provides a community and a purpose. The Friendship Center is an inclusive community where all people accept and support one another in their well-being and recovery. We acknowledge the inherent value of each person.

MISSION

The Friendship Center is an inclusive community that promotes the mental, physical, and spiritual wellbeing of adults marginalized by mental health challenges and by poverty.

VALUES

* Community:  We are an open and accepting community that accepts each other as we are.  This is a place to be known and loved.

* Well-being:  We facilitate mutual support in recovery, we help each other to meet our basic needs, and we educate and advocate for our physical health and the health of others.

* The Inherent Value of Each Person:  Each person bears inherent value independent of their ability to function in a specific way.  We encourage spirituality, friendship, artistic expression, and the dignity of work. 

HOW WE ARE ADDRESSING THIS CHALLENGE AND FULFILLING THIS MISSION

The Friendship Center is a transformative recovery community directed by its community members.  The Friendship Center is a community of mutuality in which we strive to create a mentality of ‘us together’ instead of the mentality of ‘those who provide’ and ‘those who receive’

PROGRAMS OFFERED BY THIS COMMUNITY

The Friendship Center offers program days on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9am – 1pm.  We serve approximately 75-100 participants per program day.  Most live in poverty with severe and chronic mental illness.  Many have a secondary diagnosis of developmental disabilities, autism, or addictive disorders.  Our community is located in Southeast Metro Atlanta.  Our demographics are roughly half Caucasian, half African-American; half male, half female; and most often between the ages of 25 and 65.  Nearly 30% of our community is either chronically or episodically homeless.

Our major areas of programming are Greenhouse and Gardening, Wellness and Recovery, Recovery through the Arts, and Food.  You can read more about those programs here.