At Mary Ryder Home, we often refer to our residents as "the ladies." It's a term of endearment that describes how we feel about the women who live in our community of friends and neighbors. We're here to organize fun activities to fill their days, share a smile while they enjoy a house-prepared meal, provide excellent healthcare options, and walk alongside them as they address behavioral health challenges. Below are just three stories that describe what it's like to make our Home your own.

photo of BrendaBrenda

Brenda has always called St. Louis her home, and after the passing of her husband, friends and family encouraged her to move to Mary Ryder Home.

“I was apprehensive at first, but the ladies and staff made me feel so welcomed,” Brenda says. “I didn’t realize how lonely I was until I arrived here. I really like Mary Ryder Home.”

Brenda’s creativity has flourished since becoming a Resident and her 3 year-old grandson, Logan, has benefited from it as well. “He absolutely loves coming here and helping his Bobo make crafts,” Brenda says.

In addition to making crafts, Brenda enjoys crocheting blankets and shawls, coloring in adult coloring books, and stringing beads to make jewelry. Brenda says her daughter "calls my crafts my toys.” She is also considering sharing her talents with her fellow Residents and starting a crocheting class at the Home.

Jeannine

Jeannine was born in Greensboro, North Carolina, but has lived in St. Louis her entire life. She has been a cherished Resident of Mary Ryder Home since 2011.

“Mary Ryder Home is wonderful. All of the staff members are very nice and are there for everyone,” Jeannine says. “I love living at the Home because it is safe, very clean, and
offers so many recreational activities.”

Jeannine is a social butterfly who can be found expressing her creative side in art class; being competitive during Jeopardy, Trivia or Wii Bowling; and trying her luck at Bingo. She jokes, “If you’re bored at Mary Ryder Home, it’s your fault!”

Jeannine is also very computer savvy and enjoys connecting with friends on Facebook, playing Candy Crush, and piecing together online puzzles. She is an animal lover (cats in particular) and has an interest in volunteering at a no-kill animal shelter.

Joanie

Joanie came to Mary Ryder Home after the behavioral healthcare facility she was living in abruptly closed, leaving her with just one week to find shelter.

Luckily Joanie found more than a place to stay. She found her forever home at Mary Ryder Home, and our caregivers welcomed her with open arms.

“This is the best place,” Joanie says. “You support me and encourage me not to give up. I wouldn’t be doing as good as I am without you.”

Through compassionate care and healing, Mary Ryder Home has helped Joanie thrive. Not only has she attended classes at Forest Park Community College (and achieve A’s and B’s!), but she has also evolved into a passionate advocate for the importance of mental wellbeing. She regularly speaks to groups at Independence Center and George Warren Brown School of Social Work at Washington University about the topic. By sharing her story, she hopes to reduce the stigma about mental illness.