Elmcor Youth and Adult Activities was started in 1965 by a group of concerned parents and senior citizens in the East Elmhurst/Corona area of Queens, New York. Consisting of three neighborhood recreational programs and a senior’s club, Elmcor developed from that small volunteer organization into a major provider of human services. Beginning in 1981, they expanded their services to provide comprehensive substance abuse services using prevention, outpatient and residential treatment programs.
Accommodations and Food
Elmcor’s residential program is in one of three buildings on one large lot—an ultra-modern facility where comprehensive clinical services are available. Administrative offices, therapy rooms and the kitchen are on the first floor, with bedrooms on the second floor. There are beds for 40 men and 11 women, with four to six people to a room. Décor is simple, but homey. Rooms are carpeted and have twin beds, shared dressers and closets. Coin-operated laundry facilities are on-site and clients are responsible for their own detergent and laundry money. There is a lounge with a TV for the residents to share, but it is off limits except for Sundays and during free time.
The kitchen staff is responsible for meal prep while residents participate in serving and clean up. Clients are served three meals a day and there is a salad bar option at lunch and dinner. Smoking is allowed here, in designated areas, but there is absolutely no gum chewing. As usual, no personal electronics are allowed and any phone calls will have to wait 60 days, at which time they can be made by payphone.
Treatment and Staff
The inpatient program is for adult men and women and lasts anywhere from 12 to 18 months. Detox is not available and there is no full-time medical staff on site. Still, clients with co-occurring disorders receive mental health evaluations and medication and attend group therapy specific to their needs. All clients start the day with breakfast at 7:30 am, followed by morning chores. Groups start at 10 am and topics include health education, relapse prevention, peer pressure, coping skills and job search strategies. Gender-specific groups are on Monday, Wednesday and Friday afternoons. After lunch, clients have free time until the 2 pm group starts. Free time is from 3:30 pm until 4:30 and dinner is served at 5:30 pm.
For the first 60 days, clients are not allowed to leave the facility. If they stay clean, they are moved to Phase Two and are permitted to leave the facility with a buddy for an eight-hour pass. Once a client reaches Phase Two, they are also eligible to be taken to a 12-step meeting on a weeknight pass. While Elmcor recommends outside support services, they do not provide transportation to outside AA or NA meetings, nor do they have meetings on site. At Phase Three, residents can have an overnight pass with a buddy, and at Phase Four they can stay out for the weekend, also with a buddy. All residents are drug tested upon their return. Transition through the different phases is not always based on length of stay; demonstrating leadership and accepting responsibility play key roles.
Individual therapy is scheduled once a week. A licensed substance abuse counselor, using CBT, facilitates all group and individual sessions. The client-to-staff ratio is 12-to-one, though this may vary with the census.
Outpatient treatment offers intensive and non-intensive tracks. IOP clients attend four days a week, while regular outpatient clients attend two to three days a week. There are evening groups for working clients and a special track for Spanish-speaking individuals. Clinical services include individual and group therapy, family counseling, relapse prevention, vocational counseling, anger management workshops and family reunification groups.
The family program consists of therapeutic educational sessions where family members focus on, and work to resolve, the impact of addiction on the family unit. These sessions are held two evenings a week; significant others attend on an as needed basis. While family sessions are not mandatory, they are highly recommended as a key to treatment.
The prevention program provides positive alternatives for at-risk youth and adults and is located in the same place as residential and outpatient services. Licensed substance abuse counselors and therapists offer evidence-based treatment through individual and group counseling (including anger management and gang issues), life skills workshops, vocational counseling and support service referrals. Clients also have access to a GED program and a state-of-the-art computer lab. Adolescents under 18 years of age attend group five days a week and parents and legal guardians must attend at least two family sessions.
Elmcor Youth and Adult Activities provides comprehensive support to people struggling with substance abuse over the long term—well into the first year of sobriety. While they do not specifically embrace the 12 steps, clients are given information on meetings and can attend on their own as treatment progresses. Important for parents and families; the outpatient prevention program for adolescents may be a way to avoid residential treatment in the future.
Elmcor Youth and Adult Activities
107-20 Northern Blvd
Corona, NY 11368
Elmcor Youth and Adult Activities Cost: Sliding scale. Reach Elmcor Youth and Adult Activities by phone at (718) 457-3932 or by email at [email protected]. Find Elmcor Youth and Adult Activities on Facebook
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