The Center for Human Services had its humble beginnings in 1971, as the non-profit Head Rest, a safe haven for troubled youth run by one full-time staff member and nine volunteers. As a result of President Nixon’s war on drugs, Head Rest continued to grow and broaden its scope in order to incorporate prevention, education and outreach into its substance abuse services. Renamed the Center for Human Services in 1974, this organization now provides a number of community-oriented services in central California’s Stanislaus County. As far as substance abuse rehabilitation, it offers an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) for adults and adolescents at locations in Modesto, Oakdale and Patterson. It also facilitates the First Step program, a continuum of care for pregnant women or women with young children.
Treatment and Staff
The Center for Human Services’ core values embody the idea that with a safe environment, positive relationships and healthy community, people can ability to change and become self-sufficient without chemicals.
Detox is not offered so anyone entering treatment needs to be completely sober and free of severe withdrawal symptoms. The program consists of 36 sessions, spread out over three months. Clients meet for three-hour sessions on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. All of the sessions are group therapy-oriented. Clients take addiction education classes, learn life skills, engage in recreational activities and take part in family group counseling. Individual therapy is scheduled on an as-needed basis. Although, 12-step meetings are not hosted at the center, participation in them is encouraged during and after treatment.
The 13-week adolescent outpatient program treats teens between the ages of 13 and 17. Incoming clients, alongside their guardians, meet with a certified alcohol drug counselor who introduces the elements of the program. The bulk of the group therapy for the kids is based on Motivational Interviewing (MI) techniques. It also incorporates Wheel of Change Theory and relapse prevention. Clients are educated about the disease model of addiction and the difference between addiction and abuse.
First Step operates in conjunction with Sierra Vista Child and Family Services. It’s a continuum of care for pregnant and parenting women (of children aged up to five) who have chronic substance abuse issues. The key principles taught through First Step are how to identify and maintain healthy relationships and how to create a secure, safe home atmosphere for the family. There are a number of outpatient services available to promote these principles including individual and group counseling, health screening and case management, life skills education, group recreational activities and coordination of mental health for children, just to name a few.
The three Center for Human Services locations employ 200 staff members. Their work is regularly supplemented by the efforts of at least 100 volunteers. Licensed addiction counselors lead the alcohol and drug treatment services.
The Center for Human Services offers a number of classes and support groups, including anger management groups for adults and teens, dance therapy sessions, nutritional workshops and lots of parenting/parent-child relationship development education. A lot of the programming is tailored toward the needs of specific communities. For example, PALS, or Parents are Lifesavers, is a support group for anyone struggling with parenting. Stop Taking Other People’s Property (STOPP) is designed to address teens with shoplifting issues and KinderBound is a kindergarten-prep class for kids aged three to five. These are all great resources for maintaining healthy families and hopefully heading off addiction issues.
Modesto and its surrounding communities have a solid resource in the Center for Human Services. Their outpatient drug and alcohol treatments are certainly not a replacement for residential rehab but if money and time are obstacles in the way of getting help, free is definitely the way to go.
Center for Human Services
1700 McHenry Village Way, Ste 11
Modesto, CA 95350
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