Washington County Consumer Council, or Comfort Zone, is a drop-in center dedicated to providing people with mental health diagnosis who are currently receiving services for to treat their diagnosis and who reside in Washington County, a milieu defined by high quality meals and recreation in which to pursue meaningful socialization leading to personal growth and self-acceptance.
Washington County Consumer Council is a peer-to-peer drop-in center, meaning that the center is operated and staffed by people with mental health diagnosis’.
Comfort Zone began in 1989 with just two people who were receiving services with the same mental health agency who decided to start getting together to do things. The two invited other people they knew who were living with mental health challenges and they soon had enough people to have their first event. This first event was a dance in a space a church lent them and the refreshment was a donated cake.
For many years Comfort Zone was able to operate due only to the kindness of its partners. Our drop-ins were held in spaces other organizations allowed us to use, the food we served was primarily from the food bank, and our activities depended on the many donations of money and materials we received.
Comfort Zone still partners with the organizations we depended on early in our history but now we depend on these partners to spread the word about Comfort Zone.
We have our own space out in Hillsboro now and have drop-ins four days a week. The food served at Comfort Zone is of a much better quality than what was served years ago due to the efforts of our executive chef.
Comfort Zone has been completely peer driven for a number of years and all of our staff are individuals living with mental health challenges and are paid above minimum wage for their hard work.