In 1964, Pastor Edward Tornow moved with his family to the Fargo-Moorhead community. Pastor Tornow, Mrs. Tornow, and their son, Eddie, who was a 16-year-old young man with Down syndrome, searched for an activity center. There was no activity center to be found, which led Pastor Tornow to have a vision and dream about expanding disability services in the Fargo area. By chance, Pastor Tornow heard the Sacred Heart Convent may have facilities that could accommodate more residential options with a respite program and activity center. Pastor Tornow joined hands with the Convent and his dream and vision came to fruition in the early 1970s. In the 1980s, Friendship continued to expand while establishing group homes, supporting people in their apartments, and beginning services in Grafton, ND. By the year 2000, Friendship had 300 staff who supported 200 people with disabilities. Today, Friendship provides an array of services to people with disabilities in the Grafton, Park River and Fargo communities. Friendship supports 200 people and employs 380 staff.
Our day program is currently located in space rented from the Presentation Sisters which has become inadequate to safely accommodate all of the people we serve. This is a concern that has grown over the last several years as the needs of our clients can no longer be met by the current building. A person in this program will work on gaining skills to be more independent in life – whether it be in a job, volunteering, or in regular daily activities. The program offers appropriate skill development, socialization supports, community participation activities, and much more.
The abilities of such individuals range from persons who are non-ambulatory, lack personal care skills, or are unable to communicate or feed themselves, to individuals who are mildly intellectually/physically disabled and able to live independently with minimal support. We currently have over 100 clients who have a developmental disability in our program who will benefit from a new day program building.
Friendship needs your help to build a functional space to provide services to the people we support. Thank you in advance for your consideration. We have been so fortunate to have the support of our community throughout the years while we work to serve the vulnerable.