Wingate Wilderness Therapy is a unique therapy program focused on the healing and recovery of a mostly younger demographic (young adults and teenagers), founded in 2008. Their approach to treatment which is based in the wilderness includes both residential therapy and behavioral therapy which is designed to help struggling youths with not just substance abuse issues, but also more harmful problems like lack of motivation, depression, eating disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), self-harm and a host of other problems.
The treatment program is located in the wilderness since its professionals have observed it leads to a persistent observation and an uninterrupted mode of recovery for most clients. Since residents cannot roam about town or use their smartphones, computers, and video games the daily distractions of a traditional treatment setting are easily avoided and the wilderness has a chance of long-lasting impact. The program offers both the individual and group style of therapy and encourages residents to communicate and build relationships with its experienced staff to ignite a habit of compassion and care. Wingate Wilderness also uses the approach of alliance-based therapy which is the antithesis to a forceful type of engaging the teenagers. Here, the therapy, which is carried out by a team of well-trained professionals, results in a spirit of rapport and openness between the therapists and client.
Accommodation, Meals, and Schedules
The Wingate Wilderness program offers accommodation in the wilderness but makes the residents feel welcome and comfortable in the natural landscape using tents. The clients are to adhere to a meal plan, created by a professional nutritionist, which incorporates a balanced and healthy diet of vegetables, light proteins, fruits, rice and a host of others. The residents are given custody of their personal tent space and meals which should act habit-builder for responsibility and accountability.
The activities in the treatment program are well-spaced and meticulously planned. Residents wake up for some introspection and alone time through prayer and meditation. Hiking activities which vary with season and weather are also incorporated into the schedule of the program. Hiking is avoided by the group for two days to create time for relaxation and rest. Also, there is time for staff to have one-on-one check-ins and discussions which each resident and assist them to discover their goals and aspirations for the day. Clients are also encouraged to write letters to their loved ones, work on given assignments and set goals for the week during periods of rest.
Therapy and Treatment
The program offers two distinctive courses of therapy tailored to suit each class’ separate needs: the first for adolescents from the ages 13 through 18 and the second for young adults from the ages of 18 through 26. The clients are given an 8-12 week experience of guidance from a team of highly experienced therapists, to move along a beautiful and serene track which focuses on the tranquility and beauty of nature and fosters healing. Although the program does not offer the typical 12-step recovery process or cognitive behavioral therapy (also known as CBT) found in other rehabilitation centers, it does offer:
Intimate therapy sessions with experienced addiction professionals
Individual and group outdoor and adventure therapy
Assistance for individuals struggling with co-occurring disorders
The following are a list of issues treated at the program:
- Substance abuse/addiction
- Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD)
- Lack of motivation
- Eating disorders
- Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
- Anger Management
The program offers treatment in the form of:
- Individual Therapy
- Group Therapy
- Phone-call-based Therapy Sessions
Wingate Wilderness Therapy costs around $1,257-$1,500 per day or $15,750 for a 30-day program. They also require an enrollment fee as this is part of the registration process and this costs $2,100. Due to their exceptional approach that is different from other wilderness therapy scheme, their costs are relatively higher. Clients unable to handle the prices are welcome to choose their loan option which is in partnership with Prosper Healthcare Lending and Clark Behavioral Health Financing. Insurance provided is also accepted as long as it is sufficient to cover the charges that apply. The organization requires payment for the first 56 days to be paid upfront and then subsequent payments can be made thereafter.
Wingate Wilderness Therapy is a member of Better Business Bureau (BBB) and is licensed with NAATP and NATSAP.
- National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs (NATSAP)
- National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP)
Why WinGate Wilderness Therapy
Wingate prides itself on person to person communication, from the children to the parents, making it easy for parents to keep tabs on their children and teens. Upon arrival, the admission counselor discovers the state of the child and helps guide the parents on steps that will be taken to aid in the healing of the child. Within 24hrs of admission, the child will be provided with a therapist, and in turn, the therapist will update the parents regularly. Consultants are available to discuss with the parents, treatment options that will work for the child. Wingate believes that nature and its tranquility assists in bringing positive changes to addiction and mental health clients. Most of the programs and activities involve the outdoors. The organization provides transition mediators, if needed, for a troubled teen that shows a high likelihood of having a crisis between the time of departure and arrival. This helps to stabilize the child emotional pending on when they reach the organization. Recreational activities include hiking and camping.
Founder, Executive Director
Shayne prides himself in the therapeutic healing that the wilderness brings and has been helping adolescents and families achieve this healing for the past 22 years. He is also a renowned speaker in most charity engagements and popular associations such as the NATSAP, Naropa, and NATWC (National Association of Therapeutic Wilderness Camps) Jeff is certified by the state of Florida to be an Addiction Professional. He is passionate about impacting the lives of families and helping students discover that there is hope for the future.
Founder, Director Of Operations
Sheri holds a Master’s degree from the University of Brigham Young majoring in Recreation Administration. As a child, her family moved around a lot, and this made her develop a passion for the outdoors and also teach her the essence of keeping and retaining friendships fast. This trait helped her to develop strong and trusting relationships with the students and families she works with.
Assistant Operations Director
Blaine has been in the industry of wilderness therapy since 1988. He aids in the establishment of new therapeutic programs and upgrading the ones currently available for the organization. For the past 10 years, he has been a Certified Instructor for Positives Control System.