A Half Century of Helping

Friendship Community Care 50th Anniversary

PHOTO | Madison Starks

Friendship Community Care, an educational staple of the Russellville community, hosted their 50th Anniversary Celebration at the Russellville Train Depot on Sep. 24.

Friendship Community Care leaders were in attendance, each expressing their joy and passion for their work, as were a number of Tech students working as volunteers at the event.

Treys Smedley, a mechanical engineering major from Hector, said, “I was looking for volunteer opportunities for the honors program. This event came up and I thought it would be a good opportunity to come out and support the people that support the people I care about.”

Smedley worked as a volunteer for the entire event as a game scorekeeper.

Laken Rudelis, an elementary education major from Harrison, was working the front desk at Pottery Worx, a local store near the Train Depot.

“Pottery Worx is owned by Friendship Community Care, so we are excited for today. We have t-shirts for the volunteers, and our doors are open as a place to cool off.”

The entirety of the depot area was blocked off for the events and activities of the day. Tables were lined up and down the cobblestone streets with seating for those who chose to grab food from The Crackhouse food truck and Mountain Mudd snow cone truck.

An activity area was in full swing, with games including a mechanical pig race, a water/sponge/bucket race, and cornhole. In addition, the stage was open for live music from performers.

The depot was packed with Russellville community members, including FCC employees, FCC attendees, and the Tech student volunteers.

Craig Cloud, CEO of Friendship Community Care, had a busy day celebrating the success of the business.

“Fifty years ago, FCC began in a little rock house on Skyline Drive in Russellville, Arkansas, and has now grown to be a large statewide organization all over Arkansas,” he said.

“Fifty years is a huge milestone, and we are excited to celebrate our success but also to look toward the future and see what comes next for Friendship. In the future, we are excited to serve and support those with intellectual and developmental needs, to achieve positive and productive outcomes in order to ensure they have the same opportunities everyone else has.”

The event concluded at 5 p.m., as the workers geared up for their next celebration at another Arkansas location this month.