STAND: Survivors Taking A New Direction

The staff of The Friendship Center is excited to announce the restructuring of what was formerly known as Support Group for survivors of domestic/sexual abuse and stalking.  Beginning 3/14/17, every Tuesday from 1-2 pm we will now be offering STAND: Survivors Taking A New Direction.  This skills-based educational framework will provide a predictable, structured, trauma-informed venue aimed at offering information, tools, and resources for individuals to take with them on their journey toward healing.  While each group will always be unique, a 7 week rotating curriculum will allow members to select which group(s) to attend based on topics they would like more information about.  For example, week 1 will always encompass the subject of domestic abuse, week 2 of the rotation will involve awareness and education about sexual assault, and so on.  We will conclude each group with 5-10 minutes of mindfulness meditation.  For a weekly schedule and more detailed information about STAND, please visit our website at or call The Friendship Center at 442.6800.

*Childcare Provided

Survivors Taking A New Direction 7 week rotation is as follows:

Week 1:  Domestic Abuse—topics may include: types of abuse, cycle of abuse, red flags, barriers to leaving, etc.

Week 2:  Sexual Assault—topics may include: consent, sexual violence continuum, gender-based violence, recovering from rape, etc.

Week 3:  Safety Planning—topics may include stalking awareness, technology and social media safety, danger assessments, formulating safety plans, etc.

Week 4:  Healthy Relationships—topics may include assertive communication, boundaries, conflict resolution, equality, etc.

Week 5:  Coping Skills—topics may include mindfulness, emotional regulation, stress reduction, tools to evaluate and correct thinking errors, etc.

Week 6:  Self-Care—topics may include goal setting, physical and emotional health, rebuilding identity, empowerment, etc.

Week 7:  Expressive Arts—using creativity to facilitate self-awareness and personal growth through a variety of activities

Thank You United Way!

We are very proud and thankful to be a partner agency of United Way of the Lewis and Clark Area! Recently, UWLCA awarded The Friendship Center a $12,000 emergency grant to help sustain our operations after losing an important federal grant. This emergency funding will help ensure that operations and emergency client services will continue at full capacity without interruptions.

Check out the local media coverage here:

2016 Officer of the Year

The Helena Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault (DVSA) Working Group, along with The Friendship Center, announced the recipient of the Officer of the Year award. Chief Justice Mike McGrath presented the officer with his award. The purpose of the award is to recognize the critical role law enforcement plays in serving victims of domestic and sexual violence in our community, and to highlight the role of uniformed officers in particular.

This year the DVSA Working Group chose to honor Officer McLean Peterson of the Helena Police Department for his exemplary work in the field of domestic and sexual violence. Officer Peterson received multiple nominations for going above and beyond in serving victims of abuse.

Read the full press release by clicking here.

Local Media Coverage:
Helena Independent Record

Empty Bowls 2017

The Friendship Center’s annual Empty Bowls benefit will be held on Tuesday, April 4th from 4:30pm – 7 pm in the Lewis & Clark county Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall. Tickets are $25, kids 12 and under eat free.

Empty Bowls is a family-friendly event where you choose a bowl of your own from hundreds of unique handmade bowls! Bowls are crafted and donated by artists at the Helena Clay Arts Guild, the Archie Bray Foundation, and other local artists.

Feast on over 25 varieties of soups donated by local restaurants, and fresh rolls and cookies donated by local bakeries and businesses.

Empty Bowls includes a huge silent auction, live entertainment by the Wilbur Rehmann Quintet, and a kids’ fun center featuring hands-on clay activities.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Montana is this year’s Platinum sponsor. Other event sponsors include First Interstate Bank, Stockman Bank, St. Peter’s Hospital, and Wipfli.

Tickets are available at the following locations: Birds & Beasleys, Leslie’s Hallmark, Holter Museum, Helena Community Credit Union, Valley Bank, and The Friendship Center. Tickets will also be available at the door on Tuesday April 4th.

If you are interested in being a volunteer at Empty Bowls 2017, visit this website to learn about volunteer opportunities:

Empty Bowls volunteers receive a discounted ticket price of $10.

For more information, contact The Friendship Center at 442-6800, or