The Coalition for Community Living Blog


The purpose of this blog is to spread the news of an incredible and under-utilized community mental health model known as the “Fairweather Lodge.”  (The “Lodge” model, sometimes known as the “Community Lodge,” is often referred to as the “Fairweather Lodge” in reference to the late George W. Bill Fairweather, who developed the model in the early 1960s.) 


The Lodge as a Stepping Stone

A post by Bruce Ario

At the risk of sounding unthankful I would like to say some people may find they don't want to live in a Lodge forever. The Lodge can be used as a stepping stone, not necessarily to something better; just something different. Not to a stair case; more like a path of stones across a creek.

    I am eternally grateful for my five years in a Lodge at Tasks Unlimited. I needed to be in that situation in order to start my recovery. The Lodge gave me structure, friends, and a refuge from the world.

    But that said, I tend to march to my own drum in some ways. I wanted the solitude of my own place. Being a writer, I need a special focus. I would have been unable to give my other Lodge mates what they needed. I was only able to get started in a Lodge.

     It's not that I don't need interdependence, because I do. Now I get that at the jobsite, and my church.  But I also need time to write - a solo thing. I needed time alone to assess my Lodge experience and to write about it. I don't like to think I quit the Lodge or outgrew it. I like to think I made a lateral move to my own place. And who knows, maybe someday I'll apply to get back in a Lodge.

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