A program for at-risk youth (13 to 17 years old) who have a history of trauma and neglect, struggle with addictions, are involved in the youth criminal justice system, and/or have behavioral issues. Summit is a group care program that uses a harm reduction approach to enable adolescents to address their difficulties in a safe and supportive environment.
Males & Females Ages: 13 to 17 years
Funded / Accessed by: Region 3 Calgary and Area Child and Family Services Authority
The Summit program offers a strength based treatment and a harm reduction approach to enable youth to address their difficulties in a safe and supportive environment.
While taking part in the Summit program, participants live communally in a co-ed duplex where staff have created a stable home environment. Teens in the home have daily expectations they must follow including chores and responsibilities as well as individual goals they are encouraged to meet. Attending school, work or therapy sessions is facilitated through the program.
At the Summit home, teens are able to remain in their living quarters or take part in recreational programming in the adjacent suite. TV, games, computers, an art room and a gym are some of the amenities they are able to access.
There are six beds in the home; four male rooms in the basement and two female rooms on the main level.
Many of the teens that reside at Summit have ongoing addictions issues as well as experiences with trauma and neglect. For that reason a therapist is on site and easily accessible to participants. Appointments with doctors and addictions counsellors are also facilitated by Summit staff when requested.
Teens typically stay 3-6 months at Summit after being placed by Children’s Services, and Summit is able to assist approximately 12-14 participants each year. In successful outcomes they’ve been able to reunite with their families, find a place of their own or move into a more permanent care situation.
Staff work to build relationships and trust with the participants at Summit and to teach respectful behaviour as well as life skills. But the ultimate goal is to give youth a positive and supportive place to call home so they can begin a successful transition back into society.
Summit offers strength-based treatment for behavioral issues in an environment where youth are able to address their difficulties and change patterns of behavior. All program components work toward stabilizing challenging behaviors, teaching effective life and living skills, and reestablishing a positive family culture.
3 stages of involvement are incorporated into the targeted three to six month residency.
1. Process that involves stabilization
2. Short-term intensive treatment
3. Transition to family or alternative setting.
Summit aims to enhance each client’s area of competence and to develop appropriate skills in individual areas of need.
Value individual starting points.