The lazy, hot summer days are quickly coming to an end. Gone are lazy weekends spent by the pool. Gone is the excitement of county fairs. The children and teenagers of Butler County are trading in their summer freedom for school, homework, and studying. Heading back to school is a big deal that brings with it big changes.
The start of the school year is a big deal for us too. Sojourner believes in the importance of proactively educating the youth on the dangers of substance abuse. Early intervention is key to ending the terrible phenomenon of substance abuse.
Sojourner’s adolescent programs have been prepped and primed to suit the needs of the upcoming school year. We currently offer two different outpatient adolescent programs: intensive outpatient (IOP) and nonintensive outpatient (NIOP). These programs provide individual and group counseling, focus on the importance of family, and utilize Seven Challenges treatment plan. But most importantly, Sojourner recognizes that each adolescent is different, so we strive to provide individualized treatment that acknowledges and addresses the unique personalities, attributes, skills, and struggles of each client.
Every aspect of Sojourner’s personalized treatment plan is intentional. For example, the counseling gives adolescents a safe place to discuss their personal concerns and struggles. Also, group counseling allows adolescent clients to form a network of supportive, relatable peers.
With the intent of encouraging positive relationships, Sojourner incorporates the client’s family into the treatment program through family counseling and family group sessions. Family counseling creates an open dialogue among family members in a setting that encourages honesty and respect. Similarly, family group sessions educate the entire family unit on drug culture, ensuring everyone has the facts and is on the same page.
Finally, Sojourner uses the evidence-based practice of Seven Challenges to teach adolescents the habits of good decision-making. While this informed decision-making is taught with a focus on abstaining from substance abuse, the skills learned can be applied to any decision the client may be faced with. For more information on Seven Challenges, you can visit their official website at www.sevenchallenges.com.
Sojourner’s adolescent programs aim to stop drug abuse at a young age and give adolescents the necessary tools and strength to be able to say no. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) conducted a study on adolescent drug use in Ohio between 2009 and 2013. SAMHSA found that, per year, an average of 89,000 adolescents reported using drugs within a month from the time they were surveyed. That’s 89,000 teens in just the state of Ohio! Sojourner believes this number should be lower–much lower. So we’re doing our part to help. Furthermore, we have plans to expand our adolescent programs to better meet the needs of the Butler County region and make an even bigger impact on the future of our community.
As the adolescents head back to school (whether or not they are ready), Sojourner is ready to offer a helping hand to those in need.