Abraxas began in Marienville, Pennsylvania with one site and 30 clients. Now, over 45 years later, Abraxas Youth & Family Services is a national leader in the operation of community based and residential programming for at-risk youth, adults and families and operates 19 programs across five statesLearn more
People security comprises two fundamental concepts: (1) supervision that minimizes the opportunity for negative behavior and maximizes the opportunity for staff presence; and (2) "meaningful interaction" that elevates behavior modification from a compliance-only to a treatment-oriented philosophy.
Program security also has two key components: (1) development of schedules ensuring a high degree of constructive activity; and (2) a clearly defined structure and set of expectations for client involvement in daily routines and activities.
Staff personally address all noteworthy behaviors and attitudes and impose appropriate positive or negative consequences without being abusive. Through this, clients learn new habits and skills promoting responsible thinking and behavior.
We must not only set the standards for behavior, but also model the behaviors we teach. For many clients who have lived without positive, consistent role models, it is essential that staff act in a manner above reproach and effectively model the values they teach.
A supportive relationship made of teamwork and communication between staff and clients is essential in creating a safe environment in which change and growth can occur. Client participation in the treatment process enhances their commitment to treatment and motivates them to achieve lasting changes.
Clients respond best when they are treated fairly and with respect and are more likely to respond positively to staff who care enough to hold them accountable for their actions. Staff who take the time to teach clients, listen to their concerns, and help them help themselves greatly enhance an environment in which meaningful change can occur.
The physical environment of any treatment program directly impacts the quality of care. Cleanliness and maintenance of the building and grounds are as important as clinical activities. By setting high expectations in these areas, staff teach responsibility and respect for property and the environment, which are life skills that will carry back to their communities. Lastly, for both staff and the clients, it is important to create an environment conducive to treatment and aesthetically pleasing to clients, family, staff, and the broader community.
Through our community based and residential programs, Abraxas serves over 7,000 youth, adults and families each year. Our dedicated and caring staff pride themselves on their commitment to those entrusted to their care.
Developing partnerships in the local community through which youth and staff give of their time and talent is a long standing staple of Abraxas programming. By giving more than 47,500 hours of service annually, youth become active members of their community, develop life skills and build competencies that will benefit them far beyond their time with Abraxas.
Based on the Client Satisfaction Survey given to residents around the time of discharge, 99% reported they felt that Abraxas had prepared them to return to their home community and they were ready to leave.
My Time at Abraxas I...
Sisyphus, a figure in Greek mythology who plays a central role at Abraxas is something that has always stuck with me. He is tasked with pushing a huge boulder up a mountain everyday only to have to start anew the next. Whether it be drug addiction, addiction to money or street life, or just the everyday highs and lows of real life, we will all have to push our rock. Abraxas taught me that life is hard enough, and that your actions and ways of thinking are the only thing you are completely in control of. This is a lesson we should all know. Whether you are a client, a parent or a PO reading this, I’d like you to know that my nine months at Abraxas saved my life...Read more