Wilderness Therapy Programs for Troubled Teens in Pennsylvania
Thanks to today’s rise in troubled teens, residential facilities like wilderness therapy programs are also on the rise - including facilities targeting families from the state of Pennsylvania.
Wilderness therapy programs are residential treatment facilities that have the unique distinction of operating completely outdoors. According to wilderness therapy advocates, wilderness therapy programs are effective in rehabilitating the negative behaviors of troubled teens largely thanks to its wilderness environment - one that is completely removed from the distractions, and more importantly, the negative influence of the outside world.
While there may not be any wilderness therapy programs in the state of Pennsylvania, there are plenty of wilderness therapy programs that serve families from all over the nation.
However, parents from Pennsylvania considering utilizing this type of treatment should first be made aware of its downside.
Like many of today’s ‘cutting-edge treatments offering the latest behavioral and mental health treatments to families of troubled teens, there are some wilderness therapy programs that are simply out to make a quick buck, understaffed, or clinically untested.
The Unfortunate Truth About Some of the Nation's Wilderness Therapy Programs Near Pennsylvania
Some Wilderness Therapy Programs are Exceedingly Expensive
According to a March 2020 survey conducted by the website, All Kinds of Therapy, there are currently 28 industry-recognized wilderness therapy programs in the United States. The average cost of these programs is $558.00 per day, while the average enrollment fee is a steep $3,194.
According to the site, the average price of a wilderness therapy program has gone up 9% since 2017 while the enrollment fee has skyrocketed over 28%.
What makes these prices so steep, however, is the fact that most wilderness therapy programs operate as a preliminary treatment facility that primes its campers for residential treatment upon finishing the program - leaving parents to pay for two separate programs and transportation services (from a transport agency) to safely transport their child from one program to another.
After all, is said and done, parents might end up paying several thousands of dollars just in transportation fees.
(According to the latest data, the only type of programs most insurance companies will give coverage are residential treatment centers, namely, therapeutic boarding schools.)
Thanks to Negligent Programs in The Past, The Industry Has Been Viewed As Dangerous and Harmful by Critics
Since its emergence in the field of residential therapy for troubled teens in the 1980’s, wilderness-oriented programs have proven that, if poorly ran and understaffed, can be highly dangerous. In some cases, even fatally so.
In fact, thanks to a few poorly staffed and criminally mismanaged programs in the late '90s and early '00s, three teens have died due to mistreatment, negligence, and abuse.
The parents of the deceased teens subsequently sued the guilty wilderness programs, claiming they had been “duped and swindled” by the program’s owners. Due to their litigation, several programs lost their state licenses or decided to shut down before they could be litigated.
That said, thanks to congressional oversight, systemic change, and a rise of new, well-funded and properly staffed wilderness programs, the industry is still back stronger than ever.
Elk Mountain Academy: A New Kind of Wilderness Therapy Program for Troubled Girls in Pennsylvania
Elk Mountain Academy is a wilderness therapy and residential treatment program for troubled girls rolled up in one dynamic and reputable facility.
We offer troubled girls from Pennsylvania a unique treatment opportunity in participating in both wilderness therapy and residential treatment. By providing both forms of treatment in one destination, we guarantee our students will receive the most effective and consistent care that no two separate programs could possibly provide.
At Elk Mountain, it is our mission to provide excellent behavioral, emotional, and spiritual balance to teen girls whose lives have become unmanageable due to out of control behavior.
While our residential treatment center is located in Idaho, we have proudly served families from all over the country (including those from ~region) for over 20 years.
Elk Mountain Provides Innovative Therapy, including individual, group and family counseling to troubled teens from Pennsylvania.
We also provide specialized help for students dealing with trauma and/or abandonment issues. Whatever the underlying issues may be, our goal is to uncover the psychological factors contributing to our student’s unhealthy behavioral choices.
"The Elk Mountain Academy students learn therapeutic tools that will assist them for the rest of her life... to be a healthy young woman."
Students at Elk Mountain Academy live together in our beautiful lodge and meet regularly with their therapist, who helps them confront fears and gain confidence in a safe, nurturing, and structured environment. Elk Mountain Provides Innovative Therapy, including individual, group and family counseling. We also provide specialized help for students dealing with trauma and/or abandonment issues.
Girls who are having emotional and behavioral problems tend to be failing in school. So, our on-site, accredited academic program is intentionally computer-based and assisted by a licensed teacher, so that girls get caught up and even get ahead in their schooling.
Regular academic progress reports are available at any time.
For more information regarding our treatment program, please call us today at (208) 266-1122.
Help for Believers from Pennsylvania
24/7 Crisis Lines for people living in Pennsylvania: If any Christian man, woman, or child is dealing with alcohol and drug abuse, anorexia, binge eating, bipolar disorder, Borderline, BPD, bulimia, cutting, depression, sexual abuse, runaways, or self-injury.
List of hotlines for people from Pennsylvania (see below). Help for people from Pennsylvania who has found themselves in bad situations should Dial 911 immediately, or call:
Stop Bullying in Pennsylvania
CyberTipline, 24/7 US: 800-843-5678
National Bullying Prevention Center: pacer.org
Stop Child Abuse in Pennsylvania
Child Abuse National Hotline: call 1-800-252-2873, 1-800-25AB– USE
Child Abuse: To report call 1-800-4-A-CHILD
Crisis Numbers For Teens (under 18) in Pennsylvania
Girls and Boys Town: 1-800-448-3000
Youth Crisis Hotline: 1-800-448-4663
Teen Hope Line: 1-800-394-HOPE
Pennsylvania Suicide Hotlines
Pennsylvania Suicide Hotlines: Pennsylvania Suicide Hotlines: If you would prefer to call a Pennsylvania suicide hotline instead of a national hotline, there are several Pennsylvania suicide prevention hotlines available. However, unlike most national options, some Pennsylvania hotlines may not be staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Pennsylvania suicide hotline numbers include:
NAMI Pennsylvania: 800-950-6264
Mental Health Association of Pennsylvania: 717-346-0549
AFSP Pennsylvania Support Groups: 215-746-7256
Services for Teens at Risk (STAR) Center: 412-246-5598
Online Hotlines for People in Pennsylvania: Individuals living in Pennsylvania who feel particularly uncomfortable talking about their suicidal thoughts may find a suicide hotline online chat to be a more accessible option. Online suicide hotlines and suicide hotline text lines allow people from Pennsylvania to chat online or via text with support personnel. Some crisis line text numbers and online chats available include:
Lifeline Crisis Chat: Online chat option in your web browser - Crisis Text Line: Text CONNECT to 741-741
Teen Hotlines for Teens living in Pennsylvania: In addition to general Pennsylvania helplines, there are several Pennsylvania helplines dedicated to special populations such as teenagers from Pennsylvania. For example, Teen Line is a teen suicide hotline that has both call and text options for teens from Pennsylvania. This service even provides a teen suicide prevention hotline app for smartphones among other ways to connect.
Teen Line: Call 310-855-2673 or Text TEEN to 839963 or download the app, or Boys Town: Call 1-800-448-1833
Christian Suicide Hotline for people from Pennsylvania. For individuals from Pennsylvania who would rather reach out to a Christian crisis service, there are some options for Christian suicide hotlines, including:
The Prayer and Crisis Line: 1-866-599-2264, or NeedHim.org: Text 320-345-3455 or chat online