An Alternative to Wilderness Programs

Considering a wilderness program?

We offer an in-home alternative where the family works to heal together.

Children in crisis—whether from drugs/alcohol, anger, school refusal, failure-to-launch, etc.— rarely have problems in a vacuum. Wilderness programs can be helpful but often result in the child returning to their old behaviors when they are back at home because the underlying family and community issues that caused the behaviors were not thoroughly addressed.

We offer a flexible, in-home program where the entire family can work together to get at the root causes of the child’s challenges and can be part of the healing process.

Our program usually starts with the Family Intensive program. After the weekend, Jeff shares with you and your child his sense of what the issues are and whether or not he can help your child and family. If Jeff feels he can help, then a plan is built around his, the child’s, and your shared sense of the needs and challenges you are all facing. If Jeff feels his program is not a good match, he is happy to discuss the kinds of help he thinks your child needs. Even if it is determined that your child needs to go away, the insight gained by the evaluation process will still be invaluable.

Two added bonuses: Our program is often cost-effective compared to wilderness programs and is designed to get more buy-in from the child than being sent away.

Family intensive work isn’t for everyone—parents must be motivated to change and willing to work at it—but it can be remarkably effective and has a real chance to result in permanent improvement.

How it Works

Intensive work is usually done over several months followed by periodic check-ins so everyone stays on track. Here is an example of a typical family program:

Discussion with parents on phone/Zoom to prepare for weekend: 2-3 hours @ NC

Weekend Intensive with all family members (including extended family and close family friends) important to child: 2 days @ $1500/day = $3000 + Jeff’s travel

Twice-weekly 2-hour sessions in-person or on Zoom: $225/hour x 4 = $900/week x 12 weeks = $10,800

Twice weekly 1-hour phone/Zoom conversations with parents: $225/hour x 2 = $450/week x 12 weeks = $5,400.

Often a second intensive is needed: $3000 + Jeff’s travel

Check-ins with child or parent via text, email, or quick phone calls: NC

Access to Jeff: 24/7, except when he’s working with another client

So the total for 13 weeks of work is $19,200–22,200 + Jeff’s travel for intensives

Some families don’t need 13 weeks of work; others need more. Some children need to spend some full days with Jeff. If necessary, one or two more Intensives might be needed, depending on the progress of the child and the family. Typically, the hourly sessions are phased out gradually once everyone is feeling better. Whatever your family’s needs, our flexible program can accommodate them.

Feel free to contact us to discuss your family’s situation.