About Us

Mission Statement
The mission of STAR is to empower adults diagnosed with a mental illness living within Maricopa County by providing non-clinical peer-run support services to promote personal recovery through socialization, education and self advocacy.

Vision Statement
Our vision is for adults diagnosed with a mental illness to live independently and learn the skills necessary to contribute within our community to the best of their ability.

The History of S.T.A.R. – Stand Together and Recover Centers, Inc.

S.T.A.R. began with four recently discharged patients from the Maricopa Medical Center Psychiatric Annex in 1985.  These ex-patients got together to provide peer support after discharge from a psychiatric unit.  The goal was to provide support, education and companionship to each other in efforts to meet their needs within the community and avoid returning to a locked psychiatric unit.  The Arizona State Hospital gave a meeting room for these ex-patients to meet once a week.  These meetings grew in popularity with additionally discharged patients over the next months and those involved, reduced their need for higher cost inpatient services. The support group grew and grew until they were meeting 3-4 nights a week and they outgrew the meeting room space at the state hospital.

  • In 1987 the group formed a 501c3 and became a recognized non-profit agency in Arizona. This was the first peer recovery agency for behavioral health recipients in Arizona.
  • In 1992 we received property at 2144 E Roosevelt Rd Phoenix, AZ 85006 through grants from St. Luke’s Health Initiative and Triple R.
  • The original name of the agency was Survivors on Our Own (SOON) and became funded through the Regional Behavioral Health Authority (RBHA) in Maricopa County and certified by the Department of Behavioral Health Services as a Community Service Agency (CSA).
  • In 2009 SOON merged with another peer group called Survivors Educating Loving Friends and Family (S.E.L.F.F.) founded in 1994, and changed the legal name to S.T.A.R. – Stand Together And Recover Centers, Inc.
  • S.T.A.R. has three locations throughout Maricopa County, located in Mesa, Phoenix (original location) and Avondale.
  • We serve about 950 adults with mental illness annually on a daily to as needed frequency for each individual need.
  • Each center provides many daily groups such as Symptom Management, Communication skills, Education, Independent Living Skills, Socialization Skills, Anger Management, Healthy Eating, Health and Wellness, Exercise, Job Skills, Art and Crafts, and Advocacy.
  • The centers provide two meals a day six days per week for our members at no cost to the clients.
  • S.T.A.R. has a culinary arts program and an active catering business.

S.T.A.R. has been contracted with ASU – Center for Applied Behavioral Health since 2011 for developing a measurement survey tool each new client is requested to complete.  These surveys are sealed and submitted to the Center for Applied Behavioral Health where faculty compile the results and issue an outcomes report to S.T.A.R.  To date, the outcomes are very positive and clients appear to significantly reduce future suicide attempts; inpatient hospitalizations; increase quality of life; reduce use of ER and other emergency services and almost completely reduce involvement with law enforcement agencies.  At the same time, members report learning job skills, making friends, re-establishing relationships with family and friends and even some report gaining back custody of minor children.