Unfortunately I do not know of any way to make friends fast. Its easy to meet people but whether or not you can have a friendship with them is not so easy. If you are just looking for a social outlet. Try finding a meetup group or other social group in your area. That is fastest way that I know of.
Yeah I agree with volunteering, I've been meaning to push myself back into something for a while, which I did ages ago, and have even talked to the manager twice and she said just pop along like you did before, but I find it so hard, after I've left somewhere, its so hard to just go back, thats me you see I'll try new things but often leave and then never go back and can't find the balls to go back. And also find a hobby, where your meeting people with similar interests where you know what to talk about as your interested in it as opposed to not having a clue what to say.
Volunteer! Pick one of your interests, and see what's out there in that sort of direction. If it's music: volunteer at a music venue, or for a music festival. If it's animals: volunteer at the local humane society. If someone you know/care about has a disease that you wish they didn't: volunteer for the opposing charity (Cancer Society, Crohn's and Colitis Foundation, MS Society, etc). ...there are often even some volunteer positions available with the mental health association, and the like, too ;) So far, I've found this to be the best way to meet people who can potentially become friends. The shared interest/passion makes a great ice breaker!
Like Asho mentioned volunteering is great. Anything revolved around events helps you keep busy so you don't have to rely so much on forcing a conversation. I don't know how to make friends fast. Unless you meet that one superextroverted friend who introduces you to everyone.
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