True North Wilderness Program

5354 Main St
Waitsfield, VT 05673
Tel: (802) 583-1144

True North provides personalized therapeutic interventions and transition support for 14-17 year old adolescents and 18-22 year old young adults with an emphasis on assessment and family participation.  The length of stay is flexible and determined on an individual basis. Our average length of stay is 8 to 10 weeks.  Services are customized to provide the best possible outcome for each student. True North believes that inspiring and empowering students to identify positive choices and develop strategies for maintaining healthy relationships sets the cornerstone for a lifetime of success.

Field guides and master’s and PhD level therapists are committed to using caring and non-punitive approaches that encourage every student to discover their internal motivation for success. Sophisticated clinical methods are combined with an emphasis on experiential learning and community building. Adolescents and young adults face many pressures that undermine their self-esteem and negatively impact their lives and relationships. They may be struggling, un-motivated, or acting-out may be lacking a sense of purpose and the confidence to work toward their goals. Experiencing the natural beauty and simplicity of the wilderness environment allows our students to leave behind the distractions and complications of their lives before True North. The students are able to focus on themselves and address personal struggles with the guidance and support of our staff.

Living together in small groups requires students to practice relationship and organizational skills and encourages them to take personal responsibility for their daily success. Adolescent groups are single gender and young adult program has co-ed groups. Students are required to take time for self-reflection in order to strengthen their sense of identity, clarify personal goals, and examine the values and beliefs that guide their choices. Daily group processing facilitates open communication and supports healthy relationships within our close-knit community. Students participate in a variety of skill-building exercises and challenges that promote teamwork and leadership and that enable students to identify specific personal goals. Parents of students are also engaged in a parallel parent process including weekly phone calls as well as in person workshops during their son or daughter’s stay.

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