A friend for 30 years is a friend for life

By Erin Jordan
Photo by Landry Leatherwood
Inez Russell speaks passionately about Friends for Life’s dedication to maintain their mission and their accomplishments throughout their 30-year journey.

Inez Russell, founder and executive director of Friends for Life has spread the care of her program across 5 Texas counties over the past 30 years. Since September of 1989, Friends for Life has openheartedly served the elderly and disabled through their Guardianship, Money Management, Independent Living, Quality of Life, Adult Day Care and Life Skills programs. While the nonprofit is headquartered in Waco, five other Friends for Life offices are located across the state, with plans for expansion. 

Russell said she doesn’t feel as if she has personally accomplished anything, as “God did all of this.” She emphasized the heart behind Friends for Life and directed her platform to those in need. Russell explained the significance of better understanding the rampant issue of loneliness, noting that “once you are involved in it and you see these people’s faces and you find out their stories, then you understand that we have some folks that are in really serious situations and they do need help.”

Easton Preston, Volunteer and Quality of Life Coordinator with Friends for Life, stressed this message
and mentioned that her primary motive for working at this nonprofit was because she “fell in love with Friends for Life and what their mission is.” “Our three core values are integrity, professional teamwork, and compassionate service,” Preston said. “You can see that the people who work here really care about what they do.” 

So, what makes the 30 year anniversary so monumental? “This is why 30 years is a big deal,” Russell said. “If we can have any opportunity to increase community awareness, it gives us a chance to shine a spotlight on seniors and adults with disabilities who need help.”

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