Austin ClubhouseWorking for Wellness

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About Us

Our mission

Austin Clubhouse exists to provide acceptance and empowerment so adults living with mental health diagnoses can pursue personal goals and play a meaningful role as co-workers, colleagues, family members and friends.

Our Vision

Our vision is of a recovery-oriented Central Texas community in which all people living with a mental health diagnosis will achieve their highest potential.

About the Clubhouse

A Clubhouse is a psychosocial rehabilitation program for adults with severe and persistent mental illness, designed to support their psychiatric stability by addressing quality of life issues — namely, engaging in meaningful work (either volunteer or paid, or volunteer transitioning to paid) and in meaningful relationships. Participants are known as “members” and work side-by-side with Clubhouse staff to do the work of the Clubhouse. Membership is entirely voluntary, but the working atmosphere inside the Clubhouse is contagious, and members begin to experience what it is like to be needed and expected. The Clubhouse is organized around the work-ordered day; daily routines are normalized and Clubhouse activities focus on vocational and social experiences. Psychiatric treatment and medication management is kept completely separate from the Clubhouse.

The Clubhouse fills a major gap in service in the Austin area, as adults with mental illness cycle through the system with no real prospect to support true recovery and growth — Texas is 48th in the nation in mental health spending and dollars are focused on inpatient hospitalization and crisis care. Research on Clubhouse shows that active members experience reduced hospitalization and incarceration rates, in part due to the social network they develop. The annual cost of clubhouse membership is significantly less than the cost of repeated hospitalization, detoxification, and/or incarceration. With 80-90% of adults with severe mental illness being chronically unemployed, the economic benefit of the Clubhouse employment program impacts the entire community: As many as 45% of members will reenter the paid workforce in some capacity — contributing directly to the local tax base.

Staff

  • Amanda Royston, Executive Director
  • Greg Hansch, Assistant Executive Director
  • Lorena Sanchez, Program Coordinator
  • Emily Edwards, Community Outreach Director
  • Mae Newcombe, Staff Generalist
  • Polly Levers, Grant Coordinator

Board

  • Lisa Yoch, President
  • Robert Contreras
  • Larissa Estes, Treasurer
  • James Lee
  • Clayton Loban
  • Mark McAdams, J.D.
  • Klaus Madsen
  • Margo McCormick
  • Amanda Royston, Ex Officio

Advisory Board

  • Margie Gardner
  • Kyle Hughes
  • Pete Inman
  • David Knoll
  • Colin Wallis
  • Cathy Weaver