About Russell "Rusty" Freeman

The Russell Freeman Foundation was established and named after my cousin who recently passed away from complications of HIV and addiction. It is meant to honor his memory and his own journey with his struggles with addiction in order help bring meaning to his life.

Rusty and I were born into one of the most judgmental, homophobic, racist, alcoholic, drug addicted families you could be born into.  My mother being a heroin addict, his mother with her cocktails. We both struggled with trying to fit in and be accepted by our families. We were both ridiculed and called names by our family. Me being called a little black girl, him being called much worst. I guess that’s one of the reasons we had such a bond until the day he died. We both shared the loss of our mothers who loved us very much at an early age, but we also wanted the love and acceptance from the rest of our family; however, we knew we couldn’t choose our family, so we created our own.

 The LGBTQ community became my family and has always accepted me for who I am. It has always given me a safe place to be myself, therefore I wanted to give the love back in a way that could truly change lives, and possibly save a few from addiction. 5 years ago, when I started as a therapist for a judicial treatment center, I discovered the lack of resources to send my LGBTQ clients after treatment. There was no safe housing for them, therefore my LGBTQ clients were more likely to be reincarnated. 

The Russell Freeman Foundation was established to provide a clean, respectful, safe and secure sober living for those who struggle with addiction. I wanted someplace where people can affirm who they are, with like-minded people, while providing the ground work for a successful journey of long term recovery. 

I want to continue this mission, by providing affordable sober living housing and to watch my vision grow. I want to provide a new family to those who may have been rejected like Rusty and I. I want to be that mother, aunt, sister, cousin to those who have none, and show them the unconditional love and compassion we all have seek.

With your help and donations, we can continue to grow this seed into something bigger than ourselves. Without you this cannot happen.

Nance'

Rusty