Summit Achievement and Traverse-The Value of Our Continuum of Care Model

In this video Nichol Ernst, LCSW, Executive Director, Co-Owner of Summit Achievement reviews the value of our model.  Watch the video or scroll below for a summary.

  1. We are an owner-operated residential treatment program with a wilderness component that has been continuously operating since 1996.  Here is a link for more about our history.
  2. Our community of caregivers are amazing and dedicated to helping young people. We keep our team employed with us year-round and they stay with us for years. We are not growing and contracting our team of caregivers depending on the season which often happens in wilderness programs.  Here is our team link.
  3. We offer a continuum of care.  When a young person enrolls in Summit Achievement (our hybrid wilderness therapy program) we are also going to hold a spot for them in Summit Traverse (our short-term therapeutic school).  If they go to Summit Traverse after Summit Achievement they will continue going to work with the same licensed clinician and the same staff that they’ve known all along. This allows young people to spend six to ten weeks with us in Achievement, and also the opportunity to remain with us for an additional couple of months in Traverse.
  4. Summit Achievement has been involved in outcome research in this field since the 1990s, and we feel strongly that we need to continue to look at what we do and learn about how we could do it better. We have many, many years of outcome data that we are always looking at as we think about how to change our programming and tweak what we do, and offer new services to be the best that we can possibly be. Here is our research link.
  5.  We are accredited by the Association of Experiential Education, and we believe strongly in accreditation and in making sure that there are outside agencies, in addition to the State of Maine, that are looking at our programming and making sure that we are doing everything to be as safe and as effective as we possibly can. Here is a link about accreditation.
  6.    I think something that is a huge part of our value is that we have a school. Your child is able to come to Summit Achievement and continue to participate in classes and academics, which is so valuable on a number of fronts. One, they’re able to earn academic credit and potentially keep pace with the school environment that they’re absent from. In addition, for many of our students with anxiety and/or depression and possible learning challenges, it all manifests in school. This is where so many of their triggers and challenges can show up. We believe strongly that by incorporating a school into our program we get to work with students on those challenges and triggers and help them find effective strategies that will translate directly to going back home or going to a boarding school.
  7. Over 80% of our students do not go on to further residential treatment. We are skilled and able and very willing to work with families to embrace the challenges that involve returning home or returning to boarding school.  We have years of experience in helping families develop a plan, and find services that will help them meet the challenges they will inevitably face down the road. Here is our outcome link.