Georgia's House, the Signature Initiative
405 Ridge Street
Charlottesville, VA 22902
Georgia's Friends provides programs and services in the Charlottesville-Albemarle community to help women suffering from drug and alcohol addiction and co-occurring mental health challenges. Georgia's House, the signature initiative, provides hope and healing through a safe,
therapeutic and structured home for women in the early stages of recovery.
Jane Avary Barbour
February 3, 1951 - June 8, 2006
Georgia’s Friends came together in 2006 after their friend, Georgia, died in a jail cell following a long struggle with alcoholism. We believed that Georgia would be alive if she had a safe house in which to recover and heal from her disease.
We founded Georgia’s Friends, receiving non-profit 501(c)(3) status in 2010. Our vision, a healing house for women, providing them with a supportive living environment as they maintain sobriety and build a new life after treatment or incarceration. Community partners and friends formed a community council to launch Georgia’s Healing House.
Georgia’s House, the signature initiative of Georgia's Friends opened its doors in September 2015 and continues to provide a safe, structured living environment assisting women in the early stages of recovery from drug and/or alcohol addiction, from the wounds of trauma and mental health challenges, that often accompany such addictions. Women need a home to heal and become healthy, self-reliant and productive members of our community. Our house is built on evidence-based models for women in recovery and is providing this.
In 2018 we were thrilled to move into our new home on Ridge Street. Then in January 2019, our Board announced that Mary Anne Grant was joining the organization as Executive Director. Mary Anne has 30 years of experience in nonprofit development and management and actively volunteers with a number of local organizations. Now, Georgia’s Friends is focused on organizational development, management, and long-term strategic planning in sustaining its mission as a community resource for recovery from addiction.
A bit about Georgia...
Jane, “Georgia” Alexander Avary Barbour, the daughter of Mary and Stephens Avary of Atlanta, GA. graduated from Randolph Macon Women’s College with degrees in Studio Art and English, she worked in the Gazit Kibbutz in Israel in the summer of 1972. Georgia traveled to Africa and served in the Peace Corps in 1973. She arrived at her assignment in Zaire after being freed from Idi Amin’s capture at Entebbe Airport in Uganda. Originally from Atlanta, she acquired her nickname in the Peace Corps, where she was known by the name of her home state, Georgia.
After the Peace Corps, Georgia spent a year traveling extensively by foot, hoof and vehicle throughout West Africa, crossed the Sahara and plied the Niger River to Timbuktu in a bateau. She lived with her sister in France while she recovered from illness and then returned to the US to reside in Charlottesville.
Georgia earned a master’s degree in Education from the University of Virginia, then taught French and English in local schools. She served as curator for Africa Art at the Bayly Art Museum and worked as a docent for 26 years. She volunteered at the Salvation Army, Montpelier; local soup kitchens, and church missions to Mexico and Costa Rica. In 2000 Georgia and her husband returned to the small villages in Vietnam he knew from 1968. Some of her photographs of Vietnam are on display at the White Orchard Restaurant and also at Georgia’s House. Georgia loved creating artwork and inspired others with her photographs, batik paintings and pastels.
We are a 12-bed residence and have provided more than 12,500 bed nights to women in our community fighting addiction one day at a time.
We expect to have space available the beginning of August and we currently have a waiting list.
Please contact us if you would like an application or have questions about residency. Thank you.
Updates coming soon.