All Kinds of News for January 09, 2019
In the New Year, the staff at Onward Transitions will be employing more Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), after the four therapists of the clinical team spent the final quarter of 2018 training in the model. “While ACT serves as our overarching model, our clinical approach remains relationship and process-based, and we continue to utilize other therapeutic techniques, including Solution Focused, CBT, DBT strategies, and Family Systems, to name a few,” according to Clinical Director Andy Derstine, LCSW. Derstine sees a natural fit between the ACT model and emerging adults due to the focus on values to help drive goal-directed actions.
Additionally, Onward Transitions will have enhanced group offerings in the New Year. Derstine reported that Onward Transitions’ members structure their weekly schedules of school, work and service to be able to participate in group counseling on Thursday afternoons. Since many of these members were finding that they were taking the whole day off from other activities, they asked about the potential for staff to create more group opportunities to cover some of the topics that members were addressing individually.
“In response to our members’ requests, we will now conduct three separate groups on Thursdays,” said Derstine. “A morning independent living workshop focused from the categories of health and wellness, personal finances, employability qualities, and academic planning skills will be led by one of our milieu coordinators and co-facilitated by the clinical team.” Derstine went on to say that after a lunch break, “this will be followed by our continued, mid-day process-oriented therapy group, facilitated by our therapists, where members share their progress and challenges in staying true to their values and meeting goals.” He added, “Finally, later afternoon Experiential Exposure Groups will include a rotation of staff-led community service projects, town hall styled community meetings, psychoeducation and mindfulness group, and a developmental mastery as it relates to emerging adulthood group.” At the end of this extended group day, members will have the opportunity to join staff and decompress over dinner at one of Portland, Maine’s noted restaurants.
About Onward Transitions
Onward Transitions (OT) in Portland, ME is a small, independent, owner-operated program for bright, motivated, emerging adults in the final stages of learning to live on their own. OT supports actual sustainable independent living and autonomy from two city locations. Participants (members) ages 18-29 never live with us; they live in their own apartments, scattered throughout the city. Members' challenges include anxiety, depression and executive functioning.