B’More Clubhouse Helping Their Members Build Meaningful Lives

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — It’s called “psychiatric rehabilitation.” Simply put, it’s helping people with mental illness transition from patient-hood to person-hood.

WJZ’s Denise Koch visited the B’More Clubhouse, where the men and women who attend are called “members.”

They all have mental illness, but they’re learning and growing together so they can live a full life as individuals.

From the outside, it’s just a building on Franklin Street, but inside, there’s a lot of activity at B’More Clubhouse.

“This is our work board, where our members and staff sign up for the jobs they’re gonna do on any day,” said

The clubhouse is run by the members. They do everything from the accounting, to answering phones and mail, to the cooking of breakfast and lunch.

There are B’More Clubhouses all around the U.S. and in 34 countries, but this is the only one in Maryland, and it has 130 active members who learn important skills.

They eventually take those skills into the workplace.

They have a wall of fame that honors all the members and their current places of employment. The motto is: unlock your future.

And it works. A study by the Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health shows B’More Clubhouse members cut their mental health care costs by more than $9,000 a year.

One theory for this is while most get medical support elsewhere, at B’More Clubhouse, they’re not patients, they’re people.

“To come somewhere and be told, ‘Yea, can you help us make lunch? That was really delicious. I enjoyed it.’ There’s a human validation that medication can’t replace,” said Jason Woody, executive director for B’More Clubhouse.

“This clubhouse, like every time I come here, it’s like my second home,” said B’More Clubhouse member Shakira.

Shakira’s friend William agrees. He loves the Ravens, the Orioles, the Terps, and being a member of B’More Clubhouse.

“I come every day. Every day. So I’ve grown accustomed to coming here. [Reporter: What’s your best job?] Writing sports articles,” said William.

B’More Clubhouse is a non-profit running on about $500,000 in grants and donations a year, and their members come by referral.

Click here for more information on B’More Clubhouse.

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