Programs for Troubled Teens | Both Boys and Girls
Wingate is an owner-operated wilderness therapy program designed to assist troubled teens, both boys and girls, ages 13 to 17. We specialize in working with boys and girls with dual diagnosis, and believe strongly in a systemic approach. WinGate is licensed by the State of Utah as an Outdoor Therapeutic Program, and we are a member of the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs (NATSAP).
"...We serve troubled boys and troubled girls and their families by providing an individualized treatment approach..."
We roll with resistance instead of creating resistance
Resistance ruins the therapeutic opportunity. The wilderness experience is unique in the fact it automatically creates a responsive, rather than a resistant, enviornment, which enhances the therapeutic intervention.
Rather than seek to modify a troubled teens behavior, we are able to connect with our students through responsiveness, allowing our students to gain insight into how their behaviors manifest. This is how we are able to teach our students; we can aid in development of skills for new, more affective choices and behaviors.
"...The goal of WinGate is to walk alongside a young person as they venture into change..."
WinGate is unique in the fact we do not use a level system to gauge progress.
Its not about "performance", about "responsiveness" and the internal desire to make life changes. We fundamentally believe in treating young people as "able and capable people of value.
While we certainly have rules and standards in order to keep our clients and staff safe, we try as much as possible to apply the golden rule and treat the troubled teens in our program the way we would want to be treated ourselves.
For us, it means every teen who is admitted into our program is immediately welcomed and does not have to earn their status as an equal member of the group. We try not to create arbitrary rules or practices but instead base everything we do on a common sense approach.
Consequences in our program are not staff-created, they are natural.
This common sense approach extends to our clinical work. Our clinical team seeks to understand the underlying issues which have led up to the troubled teen requiring our care and guidance.
By understanding the whole person, rather than just a behavior, we can develop thorough and individualized treatment plans for the young person and work with the family to develop new and more effective strategies for the future. We feel our clients have had plenty of struggles with everyday life; we don’t need to push buttons in order to find out why our clients are struggling.
Why Wilderness Therapy?
Therapeutic treatment in the wilderness offers a stark difference from traditional settings. The opportunities for consistent observation and intervention are uninterrupted by the day to day distractions of traditional settings.
With no media, cell phones or trips into town, wilderness has a greater impact and a better chance for long term change. A wilderness setting provides the epitome of experiential treatment, happening 24 hours per day, blended with traditional individual and group therapy sessions.
Participants in wilderness treatment have a greater capacity for attention to the process, develop closer and stronger relationships with staff and peers, and therefore more quickly gain insight into previous unhealthy behavior and begin to make appropriate changes. This is further supported through overcoming the natural challenges encountered in the wilderness and the self- efficacy and esteem achieved in the process.
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