Compeer matches caring adults in one-to-one, co-equal friendships with people of the same gender who are in mental health recovery. We encourage volunteerism among caring adults and support from the local community. We also train, guide and monitor volunteer relationships with Compeer friends.
Compeer of Suburban Philadelphia currently supports friendship matches in Delaware and Montgomery Counties.
Because of Compeer friendships, people are registering to vote, celebrating holidays with others, and reintegrating into their communities with the help of their volunteer friend. That's the good news.
The bad news is that many people in the counties we serve are on a waiting list for a volunteer friend. Those on the waiting list are isolated, lonely, economically disadvantaged, and are part of the community mental health system. Many lack family contact, friendships or any connection to the community.
The Compeer Concept
The dictionary defines "Compeer" as a peer, a companion, an equal. The Compeer program offers the opportunity to change a lonely life. We match caring adults like you with those who need them the most.
Although it is sometimes difficult to accept, mental illness can happen to anyone. In fact, one in every four families is affected by some form of mental illness. And, like any other illness, it can strike anyone in any walk of life. When it happens, the need for a friend to turn to is never greater.
Yet most people referred to Compeer are alone, without the vital support of family and friends.
Compeer recognizes that mental illness can be the "loneliest illness" and believes that volunteers can provide the comfort and motivation needed to help people in mental health recovery lead happy, productive lives. Compeer does not provide treatment but bridges the gap in traditional support systems for individuals diagnosed with a mental illness.
Compeer Makes a Difference - Irene and Pamela's story:
Irene and Pamela have been matched for two years. Irene says, “Pam and I were matched in December 2011. The first time I met Pam I knew I found a friend for life. When I decided to volunteer for Compeer, I thought I was making a difference in someone else's life, but it was I who found out that I was the one who got so much out of the relationship. Pam and I spend Saturdays going to lunch and shopping. Pam and I can talk about anything that is happening in our lives. I love Pam like a sister. I want to thank Compeer and Olga for giving me the opportunity of finding a lifelong friend”.
Please see the Veteran Outreach page on our website for more information about CompeerCORPS.