SUWS of the Carolinas is a treatment facility for children and teenagers with mental health problems, addiction and behavioral issues. The center was founded back in 1981, in Idaho, but has since been moved outside Asheville in Old Fort, North Carolina. The environment of the mountains is perfect for specialized addiction treatment based on reconnection with nature.
SUWS of the Carolinas: Treatments, Program, and Staff
The main goal of the treatment program in SUWS of the Carolinas is to teach young individuals how to deal with everyday problems without using drugs. Group of highly educated therapists works as a team in order to achieve treatment goals. The treatment is separated into two groups—Bravo for boys, and Luna for girls.
Bravo program is designed to empower male students to realize their behavior is maladaptive and destructive. Luna program is based on authenticity, belonging, communication, and sisterhood. Each of these blocks helps girls deal with trauma, failure, and other unpleasant experiences.
When it comes to wilderness programs, SUWS of the Carolinas offers four differents treatment options:
- Seasons is an outdoor program created for children from 10 to 13 years of age who have behavioral and mental health issues.
- SUWS of the Carolinas is the program that addresses physical, psychological, and social needs of the children with addiction and mental health problems.
- Phoenix Outdoors encourages a positive growth and helps teens develop functional skills.
- Approach is focused on teens with autism, avoidance, and social issues.
First two days after the admission, students undergo an orientation process and medical examination. During this period, students stay in a base camp. The main task is the observation of the group dynamic and assessment, and the focus is on safety.
During their stay in SUWS of the Carolinas, students have to learn how their individual actions leave consequences on themselves and everyone around them. Developing a personal responsibility is one of the main goals of the treatment.
Another important goal of the therapy is to practice relationship skills. This is accomplished by doing the tasks that are important for the welfare of the entire group.
On the final level of the recovery process, students become leaders and role models for new patients. This way, they contribute to the group, build their own self-esteem, and apply learned skills.
Parents are also involved in the entire recovery process. They can contact the center once a week over the phone and observe the progress of the treatment on the website. Also, the center organizes two-day parent workshops regarding communication and parenting skills.
Therapy sessions can be both, group or individual and they are based on cognitive behavioral approach.
The team of experts includes medical doctors, nurses, psychiatrists, recovery therapists, primary field supervisors, equine assisted learning experts and therapy dogs.
SUWS of the Carolinas: Facilities and Extras
The students live in large cabins which are gender-specific (four for the boys and three for the girls). Showers are located outside.
Residents attend wilderness therapy that includes 10-14 days of outdoor activities such as hiking or training on an obstacle course.
Rules and Regulations in SUWS of the Carolinas
Treatment plans are highly individualized which means the length of the stay in SUWS of the Carolinas varies. Treatment planning sessions are on a weekly basis. Also, parents can consult therapists over the phone once a week.
Students have to prepare their own meals as a group, with the help of the counselor. Also, residents have to clean their rooms and common area. Mobile phones and other electronic devices are forbidden, and students are not allowed to leave the camp area.
SUWS of the Carolinas does not offer detox services. Therefore, if a person is going through withdrawal symptoms, they will not be admitted.
The stay in the center costs $16,580 for 28 days.
Location of the SUWS of the Carolinas offers the perfect conditions to reunite with nature. With a guidance of addiction treatment professionals, students are learning new skills of dealing with trauma and everyday problems. Peer influence can also have a positive impact on the recovery process. The sense of belonging and responsibility is something students will learn during their stay in the camp, and that is one of the key factors for the successful treatment.