Most members are from Nassau and Suffolk counties,
although the Friendship Connection welcomes members from
all over the New York area. We charge a small membership
fee so that people of all income levels can participate.
Members’ ages range from teenagers to adults.
Our services are designed for parents as well as their
children. Support group meetings offer parents the chance to
network and provide an outlet for sharing common concerns
and problems associated with having a developmentally-
delayed child. Discussions revolve around issues such as
“empowering” parenting, how to facilitate independence,
survival skills, stress management and independent living
The Friendship Connection provides a therapeutically
challenging and supportive environment that is appropriate for
teens and young adults with a full range of learning disabilities
and social handicaps.
For Bob, age 24, learning and developmental disabilities
challenged his social skills, preventing him from making any
quality friendships. Although he had a full-time job, Bob
experienced difficulty with independence skills and was overly-
dependent on his parents.
Similarly, Nicole, a 19-year old attending a local high school,
had no friends or peer relationships outside of her family, due
to her social awkwardness and difficulty processing social
cues. In fact, her peers teased and tormented her, leaving
Nicole anxiety-ridden and depressed.
Another 19-year old, Michael, was also teased by his peers
because of his thick glasses and speech impediment. While
maintaining a B-average, Michael was suffering from low self-
esteem and high levels of social anxiety, causing him to avoid
most social situations.
David, who was attending a learning disabled program at a
local college, had few peer relationships outside of his family.
His dyslexia and organizational challenges left him unprepared
for the stress of independent functioning. As a result, he
avoided socializing to the point of affecting his health.
At age 19, Julie had a pervasive processing disability that
limited her social skills, social insight and sense of boundaries.
While attending special education classes in school, her few
peer relationships where characterized by much stress and
Through weekly recreational activities and trips to places of
interest, members like Bob, Nicole, Michael, David and
Julie are able to improve their social lives and self-esteem,
putting an end to their loneliness and giving them a sense of
purpose and hope.
"The only way to be a friend is to be one"
Ralph Valdo Emerson
The Friendship Connection Foundation, Inc.