The Crisis Center for Life Threatening Illness

Friends in Deed Quotes

FRIENDS IN DEED
An Open Door For All
Since 1991, Friends has helped transform many thousands of lives through our programs and services. We provide emotional support for anyone with a diagnosis of HIV/AIDS, cancer or other life-threatening physical illnesses… their family, friends, and caregivers… and anyone dealing with grief and bereavement. And we run a major HIV prevention program for teens in NYC public schools.
All of our services are free of charge.

THE BIG GROUP
Sharing Feelings, Speaking the Truth, Living In the Moment

It all starts with the Big Group – the heart and soul of our work. The premise behind this meeting is deceptively simple. It’s about hearing and speaking the truth and living life in the moment. At the Big Group, we have the opportunity to express our emotions by sharing our feelings and experiences. We begin to recognize that we’re not alone on this journey and that it’s possible to have a life of quality, no matter how challenging the circumstances.

How to Start

ONE-ON-ONE CRISIS COUNSELING
Individualized Support
One of the most unique aspects of our work is the availability of one-on-one crisis counseling for anyone in need of more individualized support. Every month, 100 counseling appointments are scheduled with our exceptional team of therapists. While not intended as ongoing therapy, our one-on-one crisis counseling does provide essential assistance for people at particularly difficult periods in their lives.

THE BODY
Body Work, Yoga,& Meditation
Friends recognizes the interconnection between our physical and emotional well-being. That’s why we have a team of bodyworkers available to provide 100 bodywork sessions each month, that can include Reiki, Shiatsu, Reflexology, Polarity, Swedish, and CranioSacral Therapy and Breema. In addition, we have weekly classes in yoga and guided meditation.

INFORMATION& SUPPORT
Workshops & Seminars
We believe that information is power. Our experts offer advice on communicating with doctors, managing medications, and understanding the relationship between mainstream and alternative treatments. Our nutritional program shows the role food can play in dealing with illness. Our workshops enable people to make empowering choices. We help people develop the practical tools needed to move beyond preconceptions, whether dealing with illness, grief, or personal crisis.

LIFE-SAVING WORK WITH TEENS
HIV Prevention Program
Teens are one of the fastest growing segments of the AIDS epidemic. That’s why we created our School Program. In cooperation with the NYC Department of Education, we provide free HIV prevention workshops at public schools and at our location. What makes this program especially powerful is that our school speakers are living with HIV. Since the School Program began, we have reached more than 70,000 students.

THE VOLUNTEERS
Over 250 Helping Hands & Hearts
Friends is fortunate to have over 250 dedicated volunteers who generously give their time and talents – working an astounding 1,500 hours every month. They work at the reception desk, answer phones, accompany people to doctor visits, speak at schools, help with fundraising, provide invaluable outreach assistance for those who are homebound or hospitalized, and on and on. Without the help of these incredible men and women, Friends’ staff would be unable to accomplish all we do.

Friends In Deed STAFF
Uniquely Focused On Our Programs

We have six full-time and five part-time staff members. Unlike many organizations, the majority of our staff is actually involved in the hands-on work we do: leading Big Groups, one-on-one counseling, visiting hospitals, conducting workshops and more. To be as cost-efficient as possible, some of our key staff also play administrative roles. Plus, we have a small, dedicated fundraising team to support the work.

Staff
Cynthia O’Neal, President
Robert McNamara, Managing Director
Cynthia Burke, Outreach Director
Jon Read, Client Services Director
Michael Jones, School Program Director
Michele Esparza, Program Administrator
Michael Cohen, Administrative Assistant

Counselors
Scott Berliner
Robert Levithan
Robin Magid
Eric Schneider

Board of Directors
Robert Levithan, Co-Chairman
Hamilton South, Co Chairman
Mike Nichols, Chairman Emeritus
Cynthia O’Neal, President
Kenneth Starr, Treasurer
Ellen Barkin
Graydon Carter
Bette-Ann Gwathmey
Jane Holzer
Bryan Lourd
Carole Radziwill
John Remington
Jeffrey Seller
Heather Watts

Support Us

How can you become a “Friend”

It’s simple. Anyone who is interested in our services, or feels moved to contribute his or her own resources of time, kindness, or financial support, is welcome.

VOLUNTEERS ARE ALWAYS NEEDED

Volunteering is the cornerstone of Friends In Deed. We’re able to do all the work we do because of our incredible volunteers. And we’re always looking for more help. Our volunteers work at the reception desk, answer phones, accompany people to doctor visits, help with fundraising, work with the computers, provide massage and body work services, visit those who are homebound or hospitalized… and on and on. Without the help of these incredible men and women, Friends’ staff would be unable to accomplish all we do.

If you’re interested in volunteering, the first step is to attend one of our six weekly Big Groups and come to the front desk after the meeting. For more information, contact our Program Manager, Michele Esparza at 212-925-2009.

Friends In Deed is an Accredited Charity of the BBB and a proud participant in the Charity Seal Program, which indicates that our organization has met the 20 Standards for Charity Accountability.  For more information about the Standards, please visit the BBB of Metro New York’s website at www.newyork.bbb.org

Other Ways you can help

Make a Monthly Pledge
Pledging a monthly contribution is an easy way to support Friends throughout the year. Just tell us what you would like to contribute monthly, and Friends will charge this amount to your credit card. It’s an easy way to budget your donation and improve our cash flow.

Donate Stocks, Bonds & Securities
Donating stocks, bonds, equities, or other securities, can help Friends by building future equity into our portfolio. Your tax-deductible amount is the market value at the time of donation. Please contact our portfolio manager, Steve Sheresky, at J.P. Morgan Securities Inc.— at (212) 272-7004. His office will assist you in your donation and answer any questions you might have.

Check for Matching Grants
Many corporations have Employee Matching Grant programs. For every dollar you donate to Friends, your company may match it or even double it. Ask your Human Resource Administrator for the matching gift form you can include with every donation you make to Friends In Deed.

Create Personal Fundraisers
Including Friends In Deed in a personal celebration can be a wonderful way to support our work. You could hold a small dinner party at home or a restaurant where a donation to Friends could be asked. One of our long-time supporters, Avalon Salon & Day Spa, used to hold a bake sale for Friends once a year. Others have donated the proceeds from club or theatre performances. And every year, many of our supporters ask for donations to Friends In Deed in lieu of birthday gifts. Now THAT’S giving. If you need help with an idea, just give us a call! The ideas and your imagination are limitless.

Name Friends In Deed as a Beneficiary
A residual effect of walking through our doors is the feeling of becoming part of an extended family. Leaving a legacy for the future will help future Friends who gather here for support. Confer with your lawyer on the types of charitable trusts, gifts of real estate and life insurance, and the many different types of bequest options available to you when considering making Friends In Deed a beneficiary.

Go SHOPPING for Friends In Deed on our      “WISH LIST”!
Now you can help us by purchasing items we really need to continue doing the work we do – some small, common items, some more extravagant – and you can do it all with a few clicks of your mouse! Just click here and you’ll be sent directly to our specific “Wish List” on amazon.com. The user-friendly prompts will guide you through the online purchase. You’ll see what items we need and you can choose what you’d like to purchase for us. Our shipping info is already in there so all you need to do is enter your address and payment information. It’s easy!

How You Can Become a “Friend”

It’s simple. Anyone who is interested in our services, or feels moved to contribute his or her own resources of time, kindness, or financial support, is welcome.

VOLUNTEERS ARE ALWAYS NEEDED
Volunteering is the cornerstone of Friends In Deed. We’re able to do all the work we do because of our incredible volunteers. And we’re always looking for more help. Our volunteers work at the reception desk, answer phones, accompany people to doctor visits, speak at schools, help with fundraising, make lunches, work with the computers, provide massage and body work services, visit those who are homebound or hospitalized… and on and on. Without the help of these incredible men and women, Friends’ staff would be unable to accomplish all we do.

If you’re interested in volunteering, the first step is to attend one of our six weekly Big Groups and come to the front desk after the meeting. For more information, contact our Director of Volunteers, Cynthia Burke at 212-925-2009 or cburke@friendsindeed.org.

YOUR GIFTS CAN HELP US CONTINUE THIS WORK
When Friends In Deed was founded at the height of the AIDS crisis, thousands of young people were suddenly facing their mortality. Our culture does not deal well with life-threatening illness, dying, and death. So we created a place where people could talk about what was happening, a place to get emotional support.

That conversation continues today… with people newly diagnosed with HIV and cancer… with teens coming of age sexually during the HIV epidemic… with long-term cancer and HIV survivors… with all those mourning the death of friends and family members.

Every day, we save lives. Not in the literal sense like doctors. But doctors are among our strongest supporters. They continue to refer their patients to Friends In Deed because they have witnessed the profound impact our work has on their patient’s lives and health.

Often there are circumstances in our lives that we cannot change. Our work at Friends In Deed is to support people in learning how to perceive their circumstances in a new way, so that their lives become richer and more peaceful. That’s what Friends In Deed is all about — making what seems unmanageable, manageable.

Your gift will help us continue this work.

To make a donation now, click here.

OTHER WAYS YOU CAN HELP
Make a Monthly Pledge
Pledging a monthly contribution is an easy way to support Friends throughout the year. Just tell us what you would like to contribute monthly, and Friends will charge this amount to your credit card. It’s an easy way to budget your donation and improve our cash flow.

Donate Stocks, Bonds & Securities
Donating stocks, bonds, equities, or other securities, can help Friends by building future equity into our portfolio. Your tax-deductible amount is the market value at the time of donation. Please contact our portfolio manager, Steve Sheresky, at Bear Stearns Securities Corp. (212) 272-6989. They will assist you in your donation and answer any questions you might have.
Check for Matching Grants
Many corporations have Employee Matching Grant programs. For every dollar you donate to Friends, your company may match it or even double it. Ask your Human Resource Administrator for the matching gift form you can include with every donation you make to Friends.

Create Personal Fundraisers
Including Friends In Deed in a personal celebration can be a wonderful way to support our work. You could hold a small dinner party at home or a restaurant where a donation to Friends could be asked. One of our long-time supporters, Avalon Salon & Day Spa, holds a bake sale for Friends once a year. Others have donated the proceeds from club or theatre performances. And every year, many of our supporters ask for donations to Friends in lieu of birthday gifts. Now THAT’S giving. If you need help with an idea, just give us a call! The ideas andyour imagination are limitless.

Name Friends as a Beneficiary
A residual effect of walking through our doors is the feeling of becoming part of an extended family. Leaving a legacy for the future will help future Friends who gather here for support. Confer with your lawyer on the types of charitable trusts, gifts of real estate and life insurance, and the many different types of bequest options available to you when considering making Friends In Deed a beneficiary.

When you give to Friends, you can make a difference in someone’s life because your money is used to support the hands-on work we do every day.