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La Amistad Foundation, Inc.'s mission is to enhance the quality of life for adults with chronic mental illness. Our goal is to maintain a community in which these individuals have the opportunity to live with dignity and independence, as they pursue leisure activities, social relationships, and meaningful work.
Opened in 1970, La Amistad, which means the friendship in Spanish, began as a halfway house for individuals with schizophrenia. The program grew throughout the 70s and 80s to include adults, substance abuse, etc. The Foundation sold its programs in 1988 so that it could focus solely on long term care of individuals with chronic mental illness. Subsequently, La Amistad Foundation, Inc. opened Lakewood Center a few miles away in Fern Park. Established in 1989, Lakewood Center is a long-term residential treatment facility for adults with chronic mental illnesses, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, autism and depression. Lakewood residents enjoy a safe, supportive environment in dormitory style residences and apartment homes located on a peaceful 15-acre campus on Lake of the Woods. The program varies in degree of structure and supervision to meet the specific emotional, social and physical needs of our residents. A wide range of activities and therapy groups are offered. The facility serves meals in its dining room and provides round-the-clock supervision. Lakewood also offers an off-campus program for residents who require less structure and supervision. Both programs are licensed by the State of Florida Agency for Health Care Administration as residential treatment facilities (RTF License #1065, 1064.)
- Michael Slaymaker
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