Companionship is a model of walking alongside an individual experiencing difficult life events, sharing the gifts of time and presence. Through companionship, respect and empathy are shared, community is fostered, and relationships built on trust and care are developed. Most participants in our programs are affected by mental illness, have experienced periods of homelessness, and are engaging in these deeply vulnerable relationships to strengthen their stability and recovery.
Residential Companion: At the House of Healing (HOH), companions make a one-year commitment to live in the house, to live in community with and provide companionship to both the companions and residents they share their home with. HOH is a beautiful eight-bedroom home, where four residents and four companions engage deeply with one another by sharing stories, meals, and living space. Residents typically come from Harborview Medical Center’s inpatient psychiatry unit. During the three to six months they spend at the house, residents receive companionship from the HOH community and clinical services from Harborview’s outpatient mental health program. When residents move to permanent housing, we continue to engage with them, extending the embrace of our caring community through our Community Companion Program, and supporting their continuing healing. Alumni are always welcome at the house’s dinner table, and many return to visit.
Community Companion Program: Our Community Companion Program is a unique and wonderful opportunity for each of the residents living in our permanent housing, as well as for House of Healing residents as they transition out of the House and into their new home, to experience the supportive presence of companions. Through weekly meet-ups in the community and group gatherings at local events, participants gain a sense of connection and confidence in engaging with others, and within their communities.
The Community Companion Volunteers (CCVs) is a beautiful opportunity to build community and combat isolation stemming from mental health issues, housing instability, and poverty. CCVs work together and individually to actively engage residents by:
- preparing and sharing a meal
- playing board games
- exploring Seattle/surrounding neighborhoods
- doing DIY craft projects
- watching movies
- going out for coffee
- walking around a local park
- and much, much more!
We're always looking for new CCVs to join us in supporting our participants on their journey to recovery. We ask that CCVs commit to being a companion for 1 year and volunteer 8-10 hours per month. Click here to apply today!