All Kinds of News for April 11, 2018
All Kinds of Therapy is pleased to announce continued record growth with organic search traffic up over 100% for the first quarter of 2018. February and March were also both record breaking months for visits to the website. "Since launching All Kinds of Therapy, understanding Google's rules for duplicate content and usable design have driven investment and development to ensure quality traffic," said Jenney Wilder, creator of All Kinds of Therapy.
The website strategy is focused on being the #1 online source for families and professionals seeking facts about varying levels of residential treatment programs, wilderness therapy programs and coaching services in the Family Choice Behavioral Healthcare industry (FCBH). Since organic traffic is unpaid website traffic, primarily from search engines, this growth shows that targeted efforts are paying off to ensure that families in crisis, young adults in search of their own treatment or professionals in need of contact information are finding what they need.
All new features have followed guidelines set forth by Google to maximize search results. This includes the new jobs feature that will be coming out this spring and a new category for programs coming this summer. "One of the largest challenges in running an effective website is adapting to the evolving changes and rules for online marketing. We couldn’t be more proud of the results of the investments we are making on behalf of our advertisers, and we are confident that 2018 will be another record year," said Wilder.
About All Kinds of Therapy
All Kinds of Therapy is located in downtown Salt Lake City, UT. The Intermountain West is surrounded by cutting-edge Family Choice Behavioral Healthcare and substance abuse industries for troubled teens and young adults. The website provides the only comprehensive, independent, online directory with a ‘search and compare’ function to distinguish among the vast options of treatment models, locations, clientele and included features available throughout the United States.
All Kinds of Therapy donates 1% of its net income to nonprofits that they believe encompass all types of education, all types of learning and all types of therapy.
Moonridge Academy math teacher Nancy Ward was honored with an “Excellence in Service” Award at the Southwest Regional NATSAP Conference held on March 6, 2018 in St. George, UT. Nancy was among 10 candidates nominated for this award. Nancy started working at Moonridge Academy in July 2016 soon after graduating from Southern Utah University. While completing her degree, Nancy provided services as a math tutor at Moonridge Academy. To this day, Nancy continues to go far beyond her job description to meet Moonridge Academy students at their learning level and engage them in her passion for math.
Nancy has found that if she connects with students outside of the classroom, she has won the battle in the classroom; she knows as she builds a relationship with them through participation in adventure activities and therapy groups she has won them over in the classroom. Nancy has cheered on students as they competed in local horse shows and she has interacted with students on monthly adventure excursions. Recently she was observed helping a student with her homework during a trip to Lake Powell! Nancy is willing to come in early and stay late to help tutor a student who needs extra assistance. Once a student sees that Nancy uses her free time to have fun, connect or study with them, students show up ready to learn in class. Often students come to Moonridge Academy disliking math. Many of them have been unsuccessful in math and this has caused increased anxiety as they enter the math classroom. Due to Nancy’s individualized approach to teaching and her ability to connect with her students outside of the classroom, students leave Moonridge feeling confident with (and often loving) math. Test scores and quarterly student updates consistently prove her success.
About Moonridge Academy
Moonridge Academy is a premier residential treatment center for girls in Cedar City, UT. This is a program for girls ages 11-15 that assists them in healing trauma, addressing mental and emotional challenges, and finding themselves through recreation and adventure. We are a program of only 16 students, so this is a very tight, individualized program with a very cohesive and fun group of coworkers. La Europa helps students unlock the potential you know is there and develop the skills she needs to overcome her current challenges. We combine a nurturing, home like environment, a sophisticated clinical approach tailored to her specific needs and a challenging academic curriculum to develop her coping skills and identity.
At The Crossroads, located in St. George, UT is thrilled to announce that it has achieved The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® for Behavioral Health Care Accreditation by demonstrating continuous compliance with its performance standards. The Gold Seal of Approval® is a symbol of quality that reflects the organization’s commitment to providing safe and effective care.
At The Crossroads underwent a rigorous three day onsite survey. During the review, compliance with behavioral health care standards related to several areas, including care, treatment, and services; environment of care; leadership; and screening procedures for the early detection of imminent harm was evaluated. Onsite observations and interviews also were conducted.
Established in 1969, The Joint Commission’s Behavioral Health Care Accreditation Program currently accredits more than 2,250 organizations for a three-year period. Accredited organizations provide treatment and services within a variety of settings across the care continuum for individuals who have mental health, addiction, eating disorder, intellectual/developmental disability, and/or child-welfare related needs.
At The Crossroads is pleased to receive Behavioral Health Care Accreditation from The Joint Commission, the premier health care quality improvement and accrediting body in the nation. Staff from across the organization continue to work together to develop and implement approaches and strategies that have the potential to improve care for the families and young adults At The Crossroads serves.
About At The Crossroads
At The Crossroads is a transitional program for young adults utilizing a highly individualized and client centered approach to treatment. Upon enrollment, each client is assessed to formulate a treatment plan unique to his or her strenths, challenges, needs and goals. Our multi-disciplinary team comprised of highly trained professionals aims to honor each young adult as a distinctive individual. There are no two pathways to success that will be exactly the same and therefore we, as a team with the client, navigate towards individuated success.
Red Oak Recovery and The Willows is extremely excited to announce extending service projects to lend a hand at Brother Wolf Animal Rescue, located in Asheville, NC. Their mission is to provide resources for animals that are in need of finding a home to improve their quality of life. Red Oak is honored to play a small part in helping make a difference through clients' volunteer work.
Each week, Red Oak Recovery and The Willows reaches out to the community to extend a helping hand. Throughout the journey of recovery, giving to others is a great affirmation that there is so much more to life than just ourselves. We also believe that animals have a strong impact on our clients as they grow in their own recovery and, in turn, can offer hope and healing to others. Red Oak clients spend time helping animals in need by feeding, walking and, most importantly, spending time with them. How amazing is it that clients are able to share moments of love with animals that can relate on an emotional level without any words needed?
There is no shortage of ways to provide service to others. Red Oak and The Willows clients' diversity and skills clients provide time and commitment to others in many various forms. Additional service work favorites include gardening, helping maintain local farm land, and the upkeep of horse stables.
Red Oak and The Willows are honored to be of service to others in the Asheville community.
About Red Oak Recovery
Red Oak Recovery and The Willows at Red Oak are located in the pristine Blue Ridge Mountains, just north of Asheville, NC, and is the result of extensive experience and research for developing highly effective programming to create a foundation of long-term recovery for young adults. The Willows is dedicated to woman-only programming uniquely blends quality clinical care, adventure and experiential therapy. Both types of programming include 12 Step work and social skills development to create positive and lasting change.
During the first week of April, Asheville NC was the hub for a lot of activities focused on the therapeutic industry. The week began with the Autism Symposium, followed by the Therapeutic Consulting Association (TCA), and wrapped up with the Wilderness Symposium. Summit Prep was represented at 2 of the three conferences.
During the Autism Conference, participants were treated to two great keynotes by Danny Raede, CEO of Asperger Experts and Nancy Tarshis, a speech and language pathologist. Both shared pertinent and helpful information. The remainder of the conference was filled with practical breakouts and energized discussions.
The Wilderness Symposium takes on a more experiential feel. Participants had the opportunity to make a drum, trek around the area, do yoga, ride a zipline, as well as listen to some engaging speakers. At this conference there is a celebration titled The Jumping Mouse Ceremony, which highlights the work and dedication of the front line staff. During the diversity training and key note by Dante Bryant, MA, participants learned about next steps in making the world a more inclusive arena.
The wealth of knowledge that is shared at these conferences was amazing. People have time to connect and reflect on the various sessions.
About Summit Preparatory School
Summit Preparatory School is an accredited private, non-profit, co-ed therapeutic boarding school located on 520 acres near Kalispell, MT. Summit integrates professional therapy and college prep academics within a nurturing and dynamic community that energizes and challenges adolescents to succeed and transform their lives. Grounded in the concepts of the Summit Model, the program focuses on promoting the development of healthy psychological and social skills. The campus is close to Glacier International Airport (FCA) and is less than an hour from Glacier National Park.
ViewPoint Center believes assessments should be as comprehensive as possible. By observing and assessing patients in a variety of settings, ViewPoint Center is able to get a fuller picture of students' diagnosis and treatment needs moving forward.
One of these settings is a classroom environment. Although patients are not receiving credit for the academics they engage in during their enrollment, it is valuable for the assessment process to observe behaviors and interactions within a classroom setting.
Comprehensive Academic Assessments
From Monday through Thursday, patients spend 4 hours in a classroom environment engaging in General Studies classes, which are designed to help the ViewPoint Center team better evaluate students' ability to succeed in the classroom and in social settings. By observing behaviors in a classroom setting, the treatment team is able get answers to questions like:
- What is their level of engagement in the classroom?
- How cooperative are they being?
- Are they understanding deep concepts from assignments?
- How distracted do they seem in the classroom?
Based on what they see in the classroom setting, team members share this information with the larger team (such as clinical and medical staff) in order to form the most comprehensive assessment and treatment plan possible for patients.
About ViewPoint Center
ViewPoint Center, a mental health assessment center for teens ages 12-17, is located just outside of Salt Lake City, Utah. With a program lasting 6-7 weeks, ViewPoint Center provides superior assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and stabilization for teens struggling with mental and behavioral issues such as suicidal ideation, anxiety disorders, and eating disorders. In a safe, personalized environment, ViewPoint helps teens focus on the healing process.
Telos, a residential treatment center in UT, announces a solution for male students who are close to turning 18. For many families, programs or referring professionals this milestone can cause concern. Many residential treatment programs are reluctant to take these students because they may self-discharge on their 18th birthday. Due to their age, these students need higher levels of structure than what typical young adult programs offer. Parents hesitate placing these older students in a youth treatment setting, imagining 14 and 15 year old roommates. Similarly, parents hesitate to place a 17 and a half year olds in a young adult program with 20+ year old peers.
To serve students who are too old for youth treatment, and too young for young adult treatment, the Telos Senior House has been custom made for near-adults age 17.5 and older.
Telos Senior House features:
- Townhouse style living with 8 beds and similarly aged students
- Age appropriate programming and activities for older students
- Youth residential treatment level structure, services, and oversight
- Excellent high school academics
- Private rooms
- If ready, on their 18th birthday, students can either stay at the Senior House or transition to one of 4 apartments with lower levels of structure. This helps increase "buy-in" by honoring a maturing student.
If you have any questions about Telos Senior House, call Becca Jolley at 801-787-4447.
About Telos U and Telos RTC
Telos U and Telos RTC, located in Orem, UT, specialize in small class size and low pressure education systems support. Telos provides a therapeutic boarding school enironment for adolescent boys who need help with Processing of Information Disorders, ADD/ADHD, ASD and emotional disorders that prevent them from thriving in a typical high school environment. Telos offers a family systems approach to therapy, working with parents and siblings alongside Telos' students, and structuring a therapeutic mileu around triathlon training programs and other engaging activities outside of school class time.
Evoke Therapy Programs welcomes new therapist Jenna Pacelli, MA, MFTI, CHHC, RYT, to Entrada in St. George, Utah. Jenna works well with clinically complex teens and young adults who have a history of grief, trauma, PTSD, suicidality/ideation, and more. Jenna earned her undergraduate degree in Anthropology from UCLA, where she helped conduct published studies in biological anthropology and psychology. She also has a Masters in Integral Counseling Psychology from the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco.
After graduating from UCLA, Jenna worked as a Senior field instructor for Evoke Entrada. She worked extensively with clients suffering from dual diagnoses, self-harm, severe trauma, low self-efficacy and self-worth and many other struggles. Jenna feels that healing must be done from the inside out and she believes that we all have the ability to heal ourselves when given the right tools and environment.
Yoga is an important practice for Jenna and she uses it to help her clients as well. Mysore Ashtanga yoga is something she practices everyday. She has certifications at the 500 and 800 hour levels as a yoga teacher and she is also a certified Holistic Health Coach. Jenna also enjoys cooking vegetarian food and reading.
About Evoke Therapy Programs at Entrada
Evoke Therapy Programs at Entrada, in Santa Clara, Utah provides innovative mental health treatment solutions for struggling teens, young adults and their families. Their programs foster lasting change utilizing the power of nature and Wilderness Therapy. They also offer Personal Growth Intensive Workshops for individuals and families who are looking to create dynamic changes in their life or to simply find the balance they are seeking.
According to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), about 200,000 American youth are currently living with Type 1 diabetes. That number is expected to rise to almost 600,000 by 2015. There is no known cure and no prevention of this disease, but personal care and management options continue to evolve. Due to life-threatening risks of Type 1 diabetes, it is essential that each individual becomes actively involved in its management. Teens with diabetes are not immune to other difficulties with mental & emotional health, substances, behaviors, relationships, or academics. In fact, the risks for other such issues can actually increase for those struggling with diabetes or other medical problems.
Diabetic teens often struggle with many behavioral and emotional issues in addition to managing their diabetes responsibly. Turn-About Ranch offers years of experience helping diabetic teens deal with their unique issues. The medical team and staff work with students individually to assess their unique needs and concerns and then develop a treatment plan that includes training and education regarding their diabetes. Students learn to count carbohydrates and track their numbers successfully, regaining control and responsibility for their physical health. They also learn how to effectively manage depressive symptoms that often accompany diabetes. The structure and supervision of this residential treatment program provides the counseling and practice needed to make needed changes in a variety of areas along with managing diabetic needs.
Turn-About Ranch works with a variety of other difficult medical problems that other programs may not be willing/able to manage (e.g, High Body Mass Index, Crohn’s Disease or Celiac Disease, etc.) Turn-About Ranch encourages parents and professionals to contact them with those hard-to-place medical cases. They will carefully review each case as a clinical/medical team to determine their ability to meet their needs.
About Turn-About Ranch
Turn-About Ranch is a wilderness therapy and residential treatment program located in the heart of Southern Utah’s canyon country. Students experience life on a real working ranch while undergoing treatment to improve their life back home. Surrounded by multiple national parks and the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Turn-About Ranch is the ideal location for youth of today to have the space they need to find healing and purpose.
Outback Therapeutic Expeditions, a leading wilderness therapy program in clinical oversight and shifting of industry norms, announced today that Theresa Wardle, LCSW, will join the company as Admissions Director. The addition of Theresa to Outback will signify and highlight a leadership team comprised entirely of therapists at a wilderness therapy program. The effective start date has been set for Monday, April 23, 2018.
Backed by over 20 years of experience as a veteran professional and clinician working with adolescents and families in therapeutic settings, Theresa Wardle has spent the past 4 years as an Admissions Director at a therapeutic boarding school. Her depth of clinical and programmatic industry knowledge, combined with her proven abilities to build relationships and trust quickly, will be key in continuing to provide families with the highest level of care and customer service through the stages of enrollment.
“Theresa has a well earned reputation as someone who is reliable, informed, and dedicated in serving as the front line for families in need of therapeutic interventions," said Business Development Director Tracy Hopkins. McKay Deveraux, Executive Director, shared the following about the newest member of his leadership team, “We have been busy over the past year expanding as a company and Theresa’s humor, industry connections, business acumen, and ability to build lasting relationships are strong indicators that she will fit our team perfectly and only add to further strengthening Outback as we continue to grow”.
About Outback Therapeutic Expeditions
Outback Therapeutic Expeditions is a licensed wilderness therapy program located in Utah that offers a highly integrated, comprehensive assessment and treatment for teens. Outback offers help for troubled teens ages 13-17 and provides clinical oversight by a Masters Level therapist every day of the week. Outback helps teens with various areas of difficulties such as depression, anxiety, trauma, family conflict, engagement in dangerous behaviors, mild ASD, electronic and gaming addiction and more. Outback’s treatment options place strong emphasis on healthy relationships, increased self-efficacy, and a healthy amount of autonomy through skill building.
Dr. Mona Treadway, co-founder of the young adult program Dragonfly Transitions, was recently featured in a guest interview with Allen Cardoza on Answers for the Family. In this engaging discussion, Mona shares the findings of her academic research on “What Young Adults Identify as Key Factors that Support Growth and Change in Transition.” Noting that an overwhelming number of young adults experience anxiety and depression, the interview begins with a foundation of understanding that if left untreated, these young adults are at an increased risk for loneliness, academic struggles, substance abuse, continued anxiety and depression, and other mental health or developmental challenges (Pottick, et al., 2008). Fortunately, there are options to help young adults who struggle with these challenges and are seeking help.
Over the last 20 years, young adult transition programs have emerged in response to young adults who need support in order to launch into healthy, independent lifestyles. Dragonfly Transitions is a young adult treatment program based in Southern Oregon that supports young adults struggling with issues such as anxiety, depression, lack of motivation, lack of focus, ADHD, substance abuse, or technology abuse through the process and experiential development necessary to flourish in emerging adulthood.
In this interview with Answers for the Family, Mona and Allen discuss the findings of the research project, and answer questions asked by the listening audience. Topics include:
- Indicators of when a young adult may benefit from treatment
- The value of professional help
- Parental boundaries that empower a young adult to take ownership of their life
- Success stories
- Grit and resilience
- Family systems
- Value of completion
- Benefits and challenges of technology
- Importance of social connection and community
The full interview can be accessed at Answers for the Family Radio Show here or access a free subscription to the show on iTunes.
About Dragonfly Transitions
Dragonfly Transitions serves young adults 18 - 30 in three locations in Southern Oregon. The variety of locations allows for a continuum of care. The campus a student first enrolls in is based on the level of support desired and personal goals and interests. Students pursue educational, vocational, therapeutic, social and recreational life goals. Dragonfly offers opportunities for hands on experience in a supportive environment where students can flourish.
Trails Carolina, a wilderness therapy program that helps adolescents and teens ages 10-17, celebrates neurodiversity at their program this April by observing Autism Awareness Month. Several staff members recently had the chance to attend the Autism Symposium taking place in Asheville, North Carolina on April 2nd and 3rd, 2018.
In a wilderness setting, students on the autism spectrum are removed from the stimulus-rich environments that many find overwhelming.
“Wilderness therapy helps slow everything down for students and allows them to focus on gaining social skills and practicing transitions in a calm, slow paced environment,” says Ashley Brown, primary therapist at Trails Carolina. “At Trails, our focus on practicing and supporting students through transitions helps students form the habits necessary to break free from the rigidity they once experienced and carry the skills they learned in one environment to the next.”
When students feel that their senses are overloaded, therapeutic staff at Trails use coping strategies such as weighted objects and fidget toys. Additionally, many groups incorporate quiet self reflection time to prevent students on the spectrum from feeling overwhelmed by senses.
“We help students practice engaging in social interactions and understanding visual social cues,” says Brown. “We do this through role-play scenarios and in day to day interactions with their peers. By building social and communication skills, we help students gain the tools to build deeper, lasting relationships with peers and family members.”
About Trails Carolina
Trails Carolina is a wilderness therapy program based just outside of Asheville, North Carolina that offers a multi-dimensional wilderness therapy model to troubled adolescents, ages 10-17. Trails capitalizes upon the profound effects of a student’s wilderness experience, and then combines that experience with strong clinical assessments and therapy.
Trails Momentum, a wilderness therapy program for young adults ages 18-25, has added fly-fishing to experiential and therapeutic programing; in April, students stocked the lake on campus with 500 various sizes of Rainbow Trout. Both formal and informal instruction will take place weekly with Trails Momentum Primary Therapist Blake Smith.
“The students will have the choice to undertake advanced trips and fly-fishing opportunities if they see fly-fishing as a potential interest or life-skill for balance or possibly going into guide service,” comments Blake Smith. “Considering fly-fishing guides can earn up to $350 dollars a day while being outside and serving others, it may be a good career for some students who have struggled to get offline and re-engage their interests in the outdoors.”
Within the fly fishing program at Trails, no fish are harmed in the process. Catch and release is the general practice at Trails, although occasionally trout meals may be prepared by the students depending on the skills and therapeutic intent behind the meal.
“Similar to the fire-making process, fly-fishing encourages students to work through a progressive series of skill minutia before working up to the macro world of casting and ultimately presenting a fly to feeding trout," says Smith. “Fly-fishing actually requires rhythmic breathing and a relaxed demeanor or else one's intent or eagerness overpower the rod, thereby rendering it less effective.”
“Students will work on fly-fishing as an experiential exercise of mindfulness and self-regulation,” comments Smith. “Research has been conducted recently demonstrating the positive psycho-regulatory effects of fly-fishing practice when integrated into a life balance pattern. It's also a fun way to hunt and be attuned to nature without having to kill something. Therefore, it is an easy conservation-minded activity since trout only live in clean water and generally beautiful places.”
About Trails Momentum
Trails Momentum is a co-ed adventure-based wilderness therapy program for young adults ages 18-25. Located in the mountains of western North Carolina, Trails Momentum offers a transformative, whole student centered growth experience for young adults struggling to launch themselves into adulthood. Adventure programming, clinical services, education, service-learning, and community living are seamlessly interwoven to maximize the transference of important life skills in order to empower students to make the transition into independence.
Foundations Asheville, a transitional living program for young men ages 18-24, helps students learn to budget and build basic financial skills. Each week, students meet with staff members to discuss budgeting and identify any issues that have arisen related to budget.
“When students first arrive at our program, we set up a bank account linked to Foundations,” comments Zac Beyers, Experiential Education Coordinator at Foundations Asheville. “This allows us to monitor their spending habits and patterns which we relay back to them during our weekly budget meetings. This helps students build an awareness of how much they are spending each week and what they are spending money on.”
In addition to learning about budgeting through their spending habits, students also learn how to budget through grocery shopping.
“Each Sunday, the life skills instructor who acts as a live-in mentor of the house sits down with students and plans out meals for the week,” says Beyers. “Each student picks a night to cook dinner for everyone and the meals they will cook. They will put together a grocery list which includes all the ingredients they’ll need to cook. There is a set grocery budget for each student per week and students must pick meals and ingredients that stay under budget. It’s a great learning experience for them and gets them fully engaged in the process of budgeting.”
Financial living skills is one of six functional life skills taught at Foundations Asheville. For more information about the other life skills taught at Foundations Asheville, please visit http://foundationsasheville.com/.
About Foundations Asheville
Foundations Asheville is a transitional living community located in Asheville, North Carolina. Foundations supports young men between the ages of 18-24 through the process of transitioning into adulthood by helping them gain confidence and motivation within a structured, individualized community environment. While at Foundations, young men gain skills to succeed academically, socially, and in the workforce. For more information about Foundations, please visit http://foundationsasheville.com/ or call 877-318-7273.
Greenbrier Academy for Girls implements three months of integration coaching in order to support students’ transition away from Greenbrier Academy’s campus in Pence Springs, WV. This new process begins one month prior to discharge; therapists and coaches begin co-leading a transition group to prepare students for what is to come in their transition home. (There is no additional fee for this service to current Greenbrier families.)
Coaching calls are contextually flexible, supporting a student whether they are off to college, or back home with their family. Additionally, alumni graduates from the coaching program are connected with girls who are getting ready to go home, providing added peer support.
The coaching program offers families and students the tools to change their response to old triggers. Coaching integration prevents students from swinging back into old patterns that they worked so hard to get out of during their time at GBA. The coaching program provides a new context and a connection that supports graduates in practicing their new skillsets. Greenbrier Academy’s team is proud to provide students with greater opportunity for lasting change and transformation.
About Greenbrier Academy
Greenbrier Academy (GBA) is an all-girls' therapeutic boarding school. The mission at Greenbrier Academy is to mentor and empower adolescent girls and their families to create quality, healing intrapersonal and interpersonal relationships through inspired critical thinking, advanced therapeutics, college prep academics and stimulating adventures.
Aspiro’s Parent Seminar is an important opportunity for parents to spend time with their therapist, to build further skills by participating in parent workshops, and to enhance relationships as they are reunited with their student for groups, family workshops, and adventure therapy. At our most recent parent seminar, alumni Sofia returned to share her story. One parent stated, “I would just like to thank Sofia for coming out and sharing what Aspiro was like for her, why she came to this program, and her after-story. Thank you Aspiro for having a graduate come talk to us parents, and thank you Sofia for sharing a story that touched my wife’s heart and mine.”
Sofia states, “I cannot thank you enough for having my dad and I come and join the parent seminar! I hope I provided some advice to parents that allowed them to realize that letting their kids leave the nest and go out into the hands of strangers, ultimately provides them a life-changing journey.”
In reflecting on his time at the seminar, Sofia’s dad wrote, “Just a short note to offer my heartfelt congratulations to the entire Aspiro team. (The Parent Seminar) was very well planned and executed— the message reinforced my long-standing belief that our children do not raise themselves, rather they have plenty of help from their parents and mentors. Aspiro is spot on, reinforcing that family support plays such a critical role in helping a child grow into an independent person. This past Thursday helped crystallize the fact our roles have set the path for Sofia to be the best person she can be, capable of doing the best work, and allowing for kindness, consideration and compassion to those less fortunate. Hats off again to Aspiro’s dedicated efforts in making us proud of our children.”
Aspiro welcomes alumni to share their experiences with others and to provide support for those who are beginning their wilderness therapy journey. It is always wonderful to see the progress students make and to hear their stories. Therapist Caitlin Galt says, “As with many students, once Sofia settled in and created relationships with peers and staff, she began seeing outside of herself, and changes began taking place. She saw the world was bigger than what was in front of her face. It is great to see her continuing with this perspective as she enjoys volunteering, humanitarian work, and fund raising for non-profit organizations.”
With treatment-specific programs located in Utah and Costa Rica, Aspiro’s mission is to be the most clinically-advanced outdoor behavioral health program in the world, providing safe, dynamic, highly effective treatment modalities that are backed by empirical research. Aspiro Wilderness Adventure Therapy is a short-term wilderness program serving adolescents ages 13-17 and young adults ages 18-28 with varying degrees of social, emotional, and behavioral challenges.
Q&A Associates is proud to offer 'Discovering Your Highest Potential', a summer program focused on providing opportunities for young adult women to embark on a journey of self-discovery and personal growth. The program is eight weeks long, beginning June 18 and ending August 10. It is open to young women between the ages of 18-25 who are interested in deepening self-awareness, overcoming limiting beliefs, and accessing higher potential.
Each young woman will participate in one educational class per week geared toward self-discovery. These classes are designed to help each participant identify and release limiting beliefs, become aware of and own life choices, experience living a life of integrity and transparency, and engage in conscious creation and mindful living.
In addition, each young lady will participate in:
- Leadership Development
- Equine Assisted Learning
- Indigenous Shamanic Healing Opportunities
- Mindfulness Practices
- Individual Life Coaching
- Volunteer Opportunities
- Cultural Enrichment
- Nutritional Exploration
The young women will have the opportunity to work with Saddles & Smiles, a non-profit providing equine assisted learning and therapy for young children affected by autism, other neurological challenges, and physical disabilities. Participants will assist the staff of Saddles & Smiles as they teach riding lessons, facilitate occupational therapy sessions, host week long day camps, and mentor the children and families of Saddles & Smiles.
“Each participating young lady will leave the program with a better sense of self, more confidence in herself and her abilities, stronger leadership skills, and the information and ability to make better nutritional choices,” said Angie Shockley, owner of Q&A Associates.
About Q&A Family of Programs
Q&A Family of Programs works with young adults ages 18 and up, providing opportunities for each of them to develop independent, functional, and happy lives with a high level of quality. Our clients have struggled to reach independence for a variety of reasons such as the inability to develop and/or implement the life skills needed to be successful, or struggling to obtain consistent employment. Our goal is to help these individuals find meaning and an authentic purpose for their lives and a practical path to achieve their goals.
Valley View School is pleased to announce that Connor Gauthier has joined the Valley View team. Connor will assume the central position of Coordinator of Residential Services. It is expected that Connor will make a strong component of Valley View's program even more successful.
Connor possesses boundless energy, a wide range of interests and the drive to excel in whatever he does. His demonstrated interpersonal and communication skills are outstanding. In recent years, Connor has developed and managed several exemplary programs in the human services field. He has earned commendation from co-workers, administrators and families. Dr. Thomas Nowak, Executive Director, states, "The consensus is clear. Valley View School is fortunate to have someone of Connor's caliber on our team."
Connor is currently shadowing residential team leaders, learning the nuances of the Valley View structure, and developing relationships with both students and staff. Furthermore, he is being mentored by Valley View's estimable Director of Education, Rick May, who has served in many key roles over the last 20 years. Beginning in July, Connor will formally take over the duties and responsibilities involved in managing the residential program.
About Valley View School
Valley View School, founded in 1970, is a private therapeutic boarding school serving boys in grades 6-12. Our non-profit 501(c)(3) school is located in the central Massachusetts town of North Brookfield. The Valley View Program consists of a comprehensive blend of Therapy, Academics, Athletics, Arts and Activities challenging our students emotionally, intellectually and physically. The boys learn self-control and anger management, social skills in order to create and cultivate relationships with peers and adults, while developing compassion, empathy and respect for others and to realize their true potential.
Alpine Academy would like to spotlight an extraordinary teacher, Denise Sagers, M. Ed.. In her 10 years teaching English at Alpine, Denise has had a tremendous impact on hundreds of students, those in her classes as well as any who meet her.
Denise started working at Alpine Academy in February of 2008 and has been extremely flexible in adapting to the needs of a growing school. These adaptations include, but are not limited to, getting a Special Education certificate to better serve students with IEP’s; becoming a certified librarian to manage the school library; and becoming an adjunct professor at Utah State University so she could teach English 1010 to Alpine seniors, allowing them to begin their college transcripts while still in high school.
Those who aren’t able to take her English or Creative Writing classes still get to enjoy the fun side of Denise as she takes every opportunity to dress up in the most creative costumes for spirit week, holidays, and other events she has planned. Denise is also a published author and many members of the Alpine team enjoy reading her novels.
Denise heads up the Alpine Academy swimming club. Students and staff members alike love her creativity, quirky sense of humor, and above all, her love and devotion for the students. Thank-you, Ms. Denise!
About Alpine Academy
Alpine Academy is a licensed residential treatment center for girls ages 12-18 located in Utah. Students struggle with emotional disturbances that are severe enough to prevent them from going to school successfully. Alpine is a fully accredited school with dual-endorsed teachers at the front of every classroom. Therapy is built into the school day. It is a nationally certified Teaching Family Model treatment program. The students live in homes with married couples, Family Teachers.
Pacific Quest’s Sustainable Recovery model of care invites students to affirm who they are in this world and their opportunities and responsibilities in Recovery. At Pacific Quest (PQ), Horticultural Therapy (HT) is utilized to understand the equivalent of the human process of addiction in plants - a condition commonly known as ‘root bound’. Primary Therapist and Recovery Coordinator Mark White comments, “When a plant becomes root bound, it has grown to the point where it exhausts the available nutrients. In an effort to thrive, the plant begins to consume itself to stay alive. At this point, if the plant is not transplanted. it will inevitably suffer and is likely to meet an early demise. In our knowledge of addiction we understand that without intervention, a young person developing the behavioral patterns of addiction may unfortunately experience similar outcomes.”
At PQ, young people are both educated and empowered to become aware of how the process of addiction has impacted their growth and are supported in engaging in the process of Recovery. Mark adds, “Within our Sustainable Recovery track, students begin to actively send their ‘roots’ - time and energy - back toward the relationships/activities/values in their life that nourish them. Caring for the gardens, exploring the Big Island and engaging in sober fun with peers are all part of the growth process - in addition to Recovery-focused clinical services.”
PQ’s unique clinical process invites students to become mindful of their personal behavioral patterns of addiction and become both knowledgeable and skillful in preventing relapse into these old behaviors. Recovery programming includes personalized Recovery coaching as well as HT-based clinical interventions that empower each student to learn effective relapse prevention skills to address their own, individual circumstances.
Additionally, students participate in a weekly Recovery Group and become knowledgeable of practical ways to make meaningful behavioral changes to support their personal Recovery. Learning to actively manage peer and other social pressures, awareness of relapse triggers and cues and use of effective coping skills are all growth opportunities students have each day. This active approach to care ensures students partake in intensive preparation for sustaining important behavioral changes post-treatment. In addition, for students interested in learning about a 12-step approach, access to an on-campus ‘PQ- only’ meeting is available as is individualized ‘step study’ work.
About Pacific Quest
Pacific Quest is an outdoor therapeutic program, located on the Big Island of Hawaii, for struggling adolescents and young adults that offers a clinical, yet holistic, approach to treatment. Our neurodevelopmental approach, combined with horticultural therapy, integrates evidence-based therapeutic methods, whole-person wellness and organic gardening to sustain a healthy community and motivate change. www.pacificquest.org
Summit Achievement is proud to announce that there has been a change in ownership. Nichol Ernst and Anson McNulty, two longstanding employees with over 30 years of combined experience working at Summit, have taken on an ownership stake in Summit Achievement. Together with Dr. Will White (co-founder), Nichol Ernst and Anson McNulty are the sole owners of Summit Achievement and the three will serve as the Board of Directors. They are committed to the value of having a small, independently owned and operated program with all owners active in programming and available on site. Summit is proud of this transition and feels honored that the company will remain in the hands of key employees moving forward.
Anson McNulty, BA has been working at Summit Achievement since 2001, he started as a field guide and has spent the last 17 years of his life helping Summit continue to thrive. He has been Logistics Coordinator, Field Director, Program Director and currently serves as the Operations Director.
Nichol Ernst, LCSW has been working at Summit Achievement since 2003 and started as a field guide as well. After years at Summit, Nichol went back to school in 2006 and received his MSW. He returned to Summit in 2008 where he served as a primary therapist. Currently he is the Executive and Clinical Director and a primary therapist.
Dr. Will White, LCSW, LADC is a co-founder of Summit Achievement and has been working here since 1996. He spent many years as a primary therapist and Clinical Director, as well as the CEO. Moving forward, he will focus more on his roles as Director of Outreach and Business Development.
Summit Achievement is proud of its legacy that began with the founders in 1996 as the original hybrid wilderness therapy program. The new ownership team is grateful to Chris Mays, the late Adam Tsapis (and his family), Candide Kane and Andrew Richardson for their support of this transition.
About Summit Achievement
Summit Achievement is, and always has been, guided by positive reinforcement and the power of choice. Our outcome-focused program employs effective therapeutic and educational principals. Through the process of engaging therapy, classroom academics and exciting wilderness expeditions, students experience the therapeutic benefits of outdoor adventure-based activities while learning to manage the demands of a more traditional environment. As an intentionally small, owner-operated wilderness therapy program, we serve adolescent boys and girls, ages 13-20, from around the world.
Originally from Southern California, Jennifer came to Utah to attend both undergraduate and graduate school. She comes to RedCliff Ascent, after being an integral part of Moonridge Academy. Previously at Southern Utah University working in student development and academia for 18 years. She has received a significant amount of training in, and teaches, human development and group psychotherapy. Her experience has been diverse.
Jennifer started working with adolescents in 2008 and discovered her passion for helping young people gain confidence in the understanding and expression of personal emotion. The training she has obtained over the years has given her the opportunity to fulfill many passions that feel innate to her. Some of these include learning to integrate traumatic experiences into life and letting go of the associated pain with these experiences (trauma, recovery); learning to achieve a positive identity as a gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender youth; gaining a positive body image and learning to have a healthy relationship with food and learning to navigate relationships with a definite sense of self and appropriate boundaries. Jennifer not only loves working with youth but believes that strong family work is an integral part of the change process. Jennifer is trained in EMDR and loves educating young people and their parents on how the nervous system impacts their responses to stressful situations.
Jennifer loves laughing, traveling, trying out new and exciting food, exploring the outdoors, and spending time with her husband and kids.
About RedCliff Ascent and RedCliff Recovery
RedCliff Ascent is a therapeutic wilderness program, nestled between two mountain ranges in the high desert of Enterprise, UT. They focus on adolescents ages 13-17 who are struggling with various challenges from anxiety and depression, to school abandonment and the need to reconnect with their family. With over 25 years of experience, RedCliff uses a relational model and narrative therapy to drive an outcome and evidence-based approach.
RedCliff Recovery is a women's specific, 12-step adventure based wilderness program. Designed by women, specifically for women.
Pacia Life, a transformational living program for young adults ages 17 to 38, today announced the opening of a new location in Cascais, Portugal. This is the sixth location for Pacia Life with other locations including Boston, Massachusetts, New Perspectives in Park City, Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah, Portland, Oregon and Rincon, Puerto Rico.
Pacia Life Portugal is a full-service location that offers cultural immersion, educational services for both high school and college students, therapy, health, fitness, sailing, surfing, scuba diving, yoga, internships as well as excursion trips to other cities in Portugal, Spain and beyond. Pacia Life Portugal also offers clinical therapy, a health care team, and support if needed.
“We work with students to execute their custom-tailored next-step actions so they can identify, curate, and work towards a future that is right for them,” said Randy Oakley, President of the Board of Pacia Life. “We customize life mapping plans designed to meet specific needs and characteristics of the student, ensuring each and every Pacia Life community member is receiving the resources they need to be successful.”
"I am thrilled to be a part of opening a new location in Europe," says Sarah Persha, Executive Director of Pacia Life Portland and longtime advisor to several GAP year programs and associations. Persha adds, “As a member of the American Gap Association Advisory Team, I have long advocated for the personal growth that comes from young adults who take a GAP year.”
For more information on Pacia Life Portugal or any other locations, please visit www.pacialife.com or call (385) 200 - 0799 ext 1.
About Pacia Life
Pacia Life is a real-life, results-based, community-based academic and experiential learning experience with Clinically Informed Life Coaches®, College Education Specialists, Entrepreneur Coaches, international GAP experiences, Wellness Specialist, Business Coaches, and a strong community network of clinical staff as needed.
Pacia Life students use the Tatori method to extract and execute a set of goals and next step actions within their personal life map in one or more tracks as stated below. All five tracks have the purpose of balanced sustainable self-reliance in the arenas of career/education, health and wellness, fiscal management, friends/family, leisure management).
Students in Pacia Life participate in one or more of the following six tracks:
- Traditional College Learning and Life Skills Support, teaching sustainable self-reliance in college;
- Non-Traditional Collegiate Learning, a tailored combination of experiential learning, internship, and certification;
- Entrepreneurial Track, similar to the prior program, but with the addition of business coaching;
- Financial Self-Reliance Track, including broad life skills teaching and fiscal education;
- Personal Goal Development, including life coaching, mindfulness, wellness practices, relationship coaching, and so forth; and
- International Experience, covering GAP years, study abroad programs, personal growth, and education.
Horticultural therapy, sometimes called nature therapy, is one of many adjunctive therapy offerings at Skyland Trail. In addition to evidence-based skills groups based on diagnosis, Skyland Trail clients also participate in hands-on adjunctive therapy groups each week, including horticultural, music, art, and recreation therapy. Clients participate in more than 125 structured groups each week.
Beginning from humble roots – a garden patch of collard greens – the horticultural therapy program now offers classes in the greenhouse and in gardens throughout the campus and is led by a registered horticultural therapist.
Horticultural therapy groups often connect concepts of recovery and growth with what can be observed in nature. For example, clients propagate plants and consider how, like plants, they must establish their own roots separate and apart from their families of origin. Nature's cycles of dormancy and rebirth are compared to the human experience of healing, change and growth. And, by planting seeds in clear containers, clients examine how plants often grow first under the soil. Watching the plants grow, clients learn that while dramatic changes may not be visible above ground, critical growth is taking place beneath the surface that will be revealed in time.
Clients also are encouraged to reconnect with their sense of whimsy and wonder through projects like building fairy homes or birdhouses with natural materials. Clients sometimes have opportunities to share their creations with the community through partnerships with local gardens and parks.
Other projects, like constructing finger labyrinths with sand and pebbles, or balancing stacks of stones, reinforce principles of mindfulness and meditation that are a part of the dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) curriculum.
Recently clients in the dual diagnosis program created a "12 Places of Pause" path on campus. A designated path incorporates 12 places of pause that correspond with the 12-step curriculum used by clients recovering from addiction or substance use and a co-occurring mood, anxiety or thought disorder.
Skyland Trail horticultural therapist Libba Shortridge, HTR, received the 2017 Rhea McCandlis Professional Service Award from the American Horticultural Therapy Association. Shortridge was recognized for her work to integrate horticultural therapy into the residential treatment program at Skyland Trail, and for advancing the role of horticultural therapy in mental health treatment.
Shortridge also leverages the horticultural therapy program as an opportunity to partner with local garden clubs. Garden clubs come to the Skyland Trail campus to participate in volunteer service projects, or to experience client-led instructional classes on flower arranging, caring for succulents, or other garden-related topics. Bringing the community to campus for these activities helps improve understanding of mental illnesses and the potential of evidence-based treatment to heal and change lives.
Horticultural therapy provides a creative outlet for clients, an opportunity to build social skills, a new hobby they can continue after treatment to maintain their health, and a green lens through which to view their own recovery process and potential for ongoing growth and renewal.
About Skyland Trail
Located in Atlanta, Skyland Trail is a nationally recognized nonprofit mental health treatment organization serving adults ages 18 and older with a primary psychiatric diagnosis. Through our residential and day treatment programs, we help our clients grow, recover and reclaim their lives. We’re focused on individuals with complex mental health issues, helping them understand that they can be – and are – more than a diagnosis. We offer expert, evidence-based psychiatric care alongside a compassionate, holistic path to wellness. Our integrated mental, medical, and social model helps clients develop strategies to improve mental health, physical wellness, independence, and relationships with family and friends. Unique therapies offered include music, art and horticultural therapy; workforce and school readiness; primary care services; family therapy; and healthy living and nutrition coaching. Learn more at www.skylandtrail.org
For over two years, Pure Life has been partnering with Costa Ricans and has developed a community-based wilderness therapy option for the local young people. Pure Life Founder Andrew Taylor and Pure Life Operations Director Cristian Lopez have been working with area youth to provide coaching, mentoring and family support.
Once a year, Pure Life offers Tico Week for the participants of the program. This is an opportunity for local youth to experience a week of adventure therapy in their own back yard. "Tico Week is a chance for local Ticos (Costa Ricans) to experience a week in the field with Pure Life staff." Andrew states, "Many of these Ticos do not have the resources to access the amazing beauty and adventures in their own back yard, it is very rewarding for our staff to facilitate this unique experience."
Last month, Pure Life commited to further formalizing the program. They are collaborating with a local Costa Rican school to provide mentoring, coaching, and adventure activities for 12 recent high school graduates. JOVA (Jovenes Aventureros), will be formally sponsored by Pure Life. Andrew shares, "Pure Life students and JOVA participants will have the chance to interact monthly in a peer mentoring setting. We look forward to the mutually beneficial relationship that will be formed by two very different cultures coming together and finding meaning and commonality in their challenges and struggles." Pure Life commits to utilizing their resources to give back to the local community and build relationships between Pure Life and JOVA youth.
About Pure Life Adventure
Pure Life Adventure is located in the Central Pacific region of beautiful Costa Rica. Relying on decades of experience in the Costa Rican outdoor industry, the bicultural team provides a therapeutically sophisticated and holistic approach to helping young adults with depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, lack of motivation, executive function deficits, trauma and substance abuse. The students are individuals with very real challenges looking for lasting change. Pure Life utilizes traditional individual and group therapy in combination with outdoor experiential learning and adventure. The Pure Life integrated and dynamic approach includes an emphasis on fitness, mindfulness, life skills and cultural immersion.
"Person, place, or thing? The games we played as kids had such seemingly simple answers. How can a poem be a place? How can a place not become part of a person? We remember a place not just for its beauty, but for the way that beauty made us feel; those feelings are woven into the emotional tapestry we call self. The most special places are the ones that give texture to our dreams, that ground us, make us whole, remind us of what is real. When I think of Labrador, I not only see its landscape but feel a stirring within." - Jill Fredston, Rowing to Latitude
Stacey, the Adventure Therapy Director at Solstice West, chose this quote to read at the end of the trip, and it sums up the Mother/Child trip so perfectly. It was a powerful experience and incredible adventure with a group of mothers, daughters, Solstice West staff, and Aspect Adventures crew. It goes without saying that Moab is a beautiful place, and a perfect location for this trip. Those four days, all the laughs, tears, challenges, triumphs, and outhouses shared, were nothing short of spectacular.
Through confronting fears and (literally) reaching new heights from rappelling, climbing and hiking, everyone gave it their all and supported each other through every step of the way. Evenings were spent around the campfire, spending quality time with each other. There is something so powerful about being out in nature with no interruptions. Moab, in all its beauty, became part of the participants.
About Solstice West RTC
Solstice West RTC was founded in 2008 in Layton, UT. We serve females and transgender students aged 14-18 as a licensed residential treatment center focusing on complex diagnoses while using our clinicians' deep understanding of Trauma Based Therapy. As a clinically focused treatment provider, our clients receive individual, group and family therapy in conjunction with a variety of treatment modalities like Adventure Therapy and Equine Therapy program. All the different treatment modalities offered assist clients in learning new skills kinesthetically and get to their core problems quicker.
Some Montford Hall students are playing lacrosse on an Asheville club team this season! Giving students the chance to get plugged into the community while pursuing a passion is an important dimension of our true-to-life recovery model.
“It’s great to see our students in their element,” says Director of Student Life Jessica Potter-Bowers, “playing a sport they love and finding real sober joy in the experience.”
Our lacrosse players are radiating a new-found confidence and energy that is contagious within the milieu.
“Nothing really captures true-to-life recovery like our guys enjoying a club lacrosse experience,” says Executive Director Alex Kirby, Psy.D. “They’re part of a real team that extends beyond the walls of a treatment program, and they’re getting an idea of how great a life in recovery can actually be.”
About Montford Hall
Located in Asheville, NC, Montford Hall is a nonprofit residential treatment program for teenage boys in early recovery. The program combines comprehensive clinical care for substance use and co-occurring disorders, innovative academics, 12-step facilitation, family support, and a wide range of health/wellness and recreational activities to give students an integrated, individualized, an inspiring recovery experience. Montford Hall is licensed by the State of North Carolina and a member of the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs (NATSAP).
The Romeyn Collective and Sober College are co-hosting the First Annual West Coast Collegiate Recovery & Supportive Programs Fair, April 21 from 8:30a – 4:00p, in Los Angeles, CA.
“For many college-aged students, traditional colleges lack the support and individual attention they might need to succeed, especially if they are dealing with a mental health or addiction issue,” says Jessica Romeyn, PsyD, founder of The Romeyn Collective. “We wanted to showcase Collegiate Recovery Centers and other Supportive Programs for college-aged students. This is a great resource for high school juniors and seniors, families and referring professionals.”
“We are thrilled to have some amazing co-sponsors for this event," adds Holly Daniels, PhD, LMFT, Clinical Systems Director for Sober College, “and we’re really excited to help bring the collegiate recovery and transitional treatment worlds together. The day is going to be lots of fun, with informative presentations and a raffle at the end of the day to win 3 free hours in the Sober College Music Studio to write and record your own song.”
This is an all-day event for parents, students, and professionals and includes a student panel and sessions by mental health professionals.
- Tickets are just $15, students attend for free.
- Continental breakfast and lunch provided.
- Professionals can earn 3 CE's throughout the day.
This event's co-sponsors include Red Oak Recovery (NC), Northbound, Red Mountain Sedona (AZ), Benchmark Transitions (CA), In Balance, Launch (AZ), Transcend Recovery Community (CA), and Dragonfly Transitions (OR).
Click here to register or find out more information.
For years, Sunrise RTC has collected outcomes data from families in order to improve programming, clinical work, and residential interventions; they gather input from the girls and their families to understand and measure each student's treatment journey. As often as weekly, students take outcomes surveys comprising a few different measures (YOQ, PHQ-9, FICS), to rate their relationship with their therapist, family, peers, staff, and themselves. Parents participate by taking the family system survey quarterly. All of this data is compiled and then used to sharpen insight -- for instance, the Sunrise Treatment Team reviews this data during their weekly meetings and uses the information to inform ongoing support for each girl and family.
“Outcomes Testing is awesome because it means we are using real time data and information to provide guidance, support, and direction to the treatment process” says Craig Simpson, LCSW and Sunrise Senior Clinical Director. “The coolest thing is that it actually works. With this data, we can stay on track and create the best clinical and residential interventions to help our girls and their families complete their master treatment goals.” This is Feedback Informed Treatment (FIT) and it is crucial because outcome based treatment matters for the girls at Sunrise RTC.
About Sunrise RTC
Sunrise is a residential treatment center for adolescent girls ages 13-17 aimed at uncovering the academic, social, and emotional potential of girls who have been held back by emotional or behavioral struggles. Sunrise combines the warmth of a home, the safety and clinical expertise of a residential treatment program and the community access of a transition program.
The Northwest Academy team is always looking for new approaches to provide students with as many tools as possible to support them as they navigate college and manage life as a young adult. Here are highlights of some recent initiatives:
Focus on Character Strengths
At Northwest Academy students identify and learn to flex their character strengths such as hope, leadership, kindness, zest and bravery. The research on the benefits of character strength shows it assists in reducing the likelihood of distress and dysfunction, while encouraging outcomes such as increased happiness, improved coping, and greater academic achievement.
Addressing Trauma through EFT tapping
One of the many ways we address trauma in students is through the use of EFT. EFT is a form of psychological acupressure, based on the same energy meridians used in traditional acupuncture, but without the use of needles. Tapping with the fingertips is used to input kinetic energy onto specific meridians and is used in conjunction with positive voice affirmations. This works to “short-circuit” an emotional block and restores the mind body balance. Because it uses positive affirmations, EFT may work similarly to traditional “talk therapy” to some extent, but can be more effective for certain people because it engages both the mind and body. In studies, EFT has shown efficacy in treating PTSD and related symptoms.
Restorative Practices Initiative
We are introducing the use of restorative practices as a tool for students to use to restore and build relationships and achieve mutual understanding and collaboration.
Individual Pursuits in Local Community
Northwest Academy students experience potential career connections and interact within the local community to engage in individual pursuits. Students can explore athletics, internships and job options and other areas of personal interests. Students play on high school or club sports teams, perform at open-mic nights, take flying lessons, attend hot yoga classes, take certified nursing assistant courses and more.
Single Gender Opportunities
Northwest Academy provides a co-ed environment, which allows for a better understanding and respect for opposite sex peers. The Academy is also mindful of the need to foster single-gender relationships and provides opportunities for experiences and activities that are single-gender.
About Northwest Academy
Northwest Academy specializes in working with high school juniors and seniors, ages 16-18, who are college capable but expressing unhealthy independence, defying authority and family rules, have lost sight of their post-secondary dreams, and oftentimes are using or abusing drugs and alcohol. These negative behaviors are often a result of underlying issues including ADHD, trauma, depression, anxiety, grief and loss, and adoption/identity challenges.
Through individual, group and family therapy students work on addressing family dynamics and their own thoughts, feelings, behaviors, and the relationships and patterns between them. They participate in a recovery program and evaluate their substance use, co-dependency, and excessive social-media use.
Academic course-work is provided at a variety of levels including dual-enrollment courses and the option of attending community college. Students may retake classes and improve their GPA. We also guide students through the college application process. Students graduate from Northwest Academy with a high school diploma and anywhere from one to five college acceptances.
Northwest Academy provides the people, place and experiences that equip students with the knowledge to manage life’s ever-changing and challenging situations.
At the spring 2018 Wilderness Therapy Symposium in Asheville, NC, The Experiential Healing Institute’s Robert Trout, MA presented on “The Fire Within - Sending Experience Home to Create Change.” This presentation and interactive session explored the ways in which professionals and programs can "create and guide" processes in the work with clients and families. The presentation focused on the reality that most clients and families will not immerse themselves in a wilderness context to maintain change but will instead work to integrate their experiences and maintain connection with both worlds.
This presentation included examining different ideas about how this is done for both the participant and family, starting from inside the wilderness to the homecoming process. In addition, it included experiential challenges, discussion and a think tank about making programs and professionals more mindful of this important process.
The session invited participants to gain a broader perspective on not just creating a "stagnant" process or experience but instead to focus on the fact that each person brings their experience to their "regular" life after treatment. The presentation format included lecture, experiential activities, group discussions, and provided the following tools for participants: 1) Helping clients and families maintain connection between wilderness and home life, 2) Lessons in Metaphor and change, and 3) Experiential Education challenges to take to work.
With over 17 years of experience in group facilitation, ceremony, rites of passage and wilderness therapy, Robert Trout, MA, now owns and operates The Experiential Healing Institute which offers Parent Training, Coaching, Prevention and Transition Support for families all over the world.
About The Experiential Healing Institute
The Experiential Healing Institute offers Parent Training and Whole Family Support before, during and after treatment experiences through action oriented guidance, training, support and experiential growth for individuals and families. The Experiential Healing Institute brings wilderness therapy skills home and trains families for continued success.
One year ago, Shortridge Academy quietly but enthusiastically launched its Center for Learning and Cognitive Enhancement (CLCE). With more students arriving to Shortridge with specific learning and cognitive challenges, it was clear that there was a real need for enhanced learning supports.
Now, roughly one-third of Shortridge students take advantage of a variety of individual and group learning services offered in the CLCE. Led by a certified masters level special educator, and a masters level English teacher, the CLCE offers students far more than does a typical learning resource room.
The CLCE comprehensive, tiered learning programs include:
- Individualized Learning Plans
- Executive Functioning Skills Training
- Supervised Scheduled Study Halls
- SAT Preparation
- Tutoring, and
- Cognitive Enhancement Training.
“As nearly all Shortridge students are college-bound, it is imperative that we not only provide accredited college prep academics, but also college prep learning support services“ reports Anne Downey, Ph.D., Academic Director. Cindy Ziobrowski, MS.Ed., CLCE Director adds “it is amazing the difference we've seen in our students as a result of improved executive functioning skills, especially those experiencing anxiety or depression. The confidence they develop in the Learning Center is striking and will only support their future successes.”
For professionals who are attending the IECA Conference in Austin, TX, Adam Rainer (Founder & Executive Director), Katie Rainer (Director of Admissions) and Mik Oyler (Chief Operating Officer) are excited to share more about the CLCE and welcome the conversations.
About Shortridge Academy
Shortridge Academy is a private co-ed New England boarding school, founded in 2002, that emphasizes challenging yet supportive academics within a therapeutic community. Guided by the innovative Positive Youth Development model, we support the cognitive, emotional, and social development of bright yet struggling adolescents by utilizing clearly-defined, goal-directed plans, evidenced-based strategies, and a college preparatory curriculum. Joining with families, our trained staff engages students to identify their strengths and encourages the development of skills and knowledge that will prepare them for healthy and productive adulthood.
Elements Wilderness Program is proud to welcome Eric Fawson, LCSW to the team.
Effective immediately, Eric Fawson is serving as primary therapist for a group of adolescent boys. Eric has been a therapist since 2005, first in residential and therapeutic boarding school settings and for many years as a wilderness therapist and Clinical Director. Eric is well known for his expertise in attachment and trauma, and he frequently sees the mood disorders, substance abuse, and other addictive behaviors that often accompany those core issues. He was adopted at birth along with his younger brother, and he is also an adoptive parent. This aspect of his life informs his work within adoption and attachment and gives his practice a solid grounding in the realities of an adoptive family.
“We are excited for all he will bring to the table with his varied expertise and his great personality,” shared Dr. Neal Christensen, Clinical Director and Co-owner. “We believe he will add great depth to our excellent clinical team.”
About Elements Wilderness
Since 2008, Elements Wilderness has been providing a specialized therapeutic intervention for adolescent boys aged 13-17. We at Elements envision a world in which everyone has the skills and support necessary to live a full and healthy life. Through innovative therapeutic and psychiatric intervention, a comprehensive outdoor living experience complete with expeditionary backpacking and adventure programming, a robust family program involving the family at every step, and evidence-based substance abuse treatment, we strive to provide our clients with intervention, treatment, and assessment.
Join Elements Wilderness and Elements Traverse (following the Utah Regional NATSAP conference) May 18th from 6 - 8 pm for a family friendly fundraiser for CF research. We don't have hair to cut this year, and we are going to party anyway. Live band, food truck and great friends!
$5 suggested admission fee and all proceeds go directly to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
Get to know Quinn
John Karren's granddaughter Quinn has Cystic Fibrosis, a chronic, life-long, progressive, and life-shortening disease. Quinn is the happiest, busiest, bright, fun-loving little girl there ever was! She is so full of life and her personality is huge, even with all her dirty looks. Cystic Fibrosis is a terrible disease that would very quickly damage her lungs if it weren't for all the lifesaving treatment options we have.
Currently the life expectancy for someone with CF is mid to late 30's: a devastating statistic. Although tremendous progress has been made in the search for a cure for CF, the lives of people with CF are still cut far too short. Join us in adding tomorrows to the lives of everyone living with CF.
Can't join us? Donate HERE.
Friday, May 18th, 6:00 - 8:00pm
Food truck and drinks
John and Melanie Karren's home
1768 Indian Wells Lane, Draper
Thank you to all our sponsoring programs: Bridge House, Catalyst, Corner Canyon Recovery, Crossroads Academy, Daniels Academy, Dare To Rise, Discovery Ranch, Elements, Elements Traverse, Elevations, Eva Carlston, Evoke, Gateway Academy, Hired Power, Live Strong House, NATSAP, Second Nature, Solstice West, Telos, TelosU, ViewPoint Center, Vista, Wingate, Youth Care
Over the past few months, the Havenwood Academy home has undergone an extensive remodeling project in an effort to provide the ideal environment for youth struggling with attachment issues to work through their trauma and heal.
All the flooring is new. The lighting in most areas has been replaced. The pantry and med room have been reconfigured for easier and more efficient usage. The bathrooms are currently in the process of remodel. The kitchen has been completely remodeled and supplied with new appliances.
While there are several other small details yet to be completed, they are nearing completion and very pleased with the improvements.
About Havenwood Academy
Havenwood Academy, a Residential Treatment Center in Southern Utah, specializes in treating teen girls experiencing Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD). Licensed by the State of Utah and accredited by the Joint Commission, Havenwood utilizes state-of-the-art, research based and proven clinical methods such as EMDR, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Experiential Therapy, and Equine Therapy to help teen girls overcome their difficulties and learn to bond with their families. Havenwood’s Positive Peer Culture program, directed by Oscar Fakahua, allows teen girls to experience deep and lasting change.