The Folktime Fund will secure the future of Portland, Oregon’s life-changing FolkTime peer support programs for generations to come through the planned giving of its founders and other friends of FolkTime.
Where the problem lies
One in four adults will suffer from the effects of mental illness this year. Unlike physical illness, mental illness is often misunderstood and stigmatized by the general public. This makes recovery and mental wellness a challenge. Social programs focused on mental wellness and recovery are vital to the health of many in our community. Isolation resulting from stigmas exacerbates mental illness and often leads to over-use of emergency services.
With the appropriate support and acceptance, most people can recover in their own communities and not rely on more complicated and expensive avenues of care, such as emergency rooms. Research shows that people with a mental health diagnosis who participate in peer socialization programs are hospitalized less, have fewer crises and have fewer negative interactions with law enforcement (Repper & Carter, 2011).
Help is on the way
FolkTime’s NE Portland Program provides peer support in a social setting to provide a safe space for recovery. Members of the NE Portland program receive support from peer support specialists as well as other members. They also explore other community support networks and provide avenues for discussing important topics regarding recovery that are often stigmatized in the community at large.
Members say over and over: FolkTime saved their lives.
Social support is the number one determinant of whether someone will recover from psychosis. The purpose of our social programs is to provide social support to people in mental health recovery. Our NE Portland Social Center provides a safe place for people with mental health diagnoses to come together in a relaxed atmosphere to play games, paint, garden, bowl, sing and eat together. Members host art shows and concerts in the community. FolkTime also offers a food pantry for members in coordination with Trader Joe’s and the Oregon Food Bank. All of our programming is free to members. FolkTime is unique in the Portland area. No other mental health recovery social program is open to all adults regardless of provider, residence or income.
These programs have been exclusively funded by individuals since they began in 1986.
Planning for the future
Russ and Phyllis Walls’ daughter has been a member of the FolkTime community for many years, and as parents, they want to know that that community will be there to support her after they are gone. To help secure the future of FolkTime, the Walls are endowing the FolkTime Fund through planned giving, naming the fund as a beneficiary in their will. They now encourage and challenge others to join them.