Harbor House of Jackson, Mississippi, offers a comprehensive addiction treatment program licensed by the Mississippi Department of Mental Health. This facility was founded to provide community-based, affordable drug and alcohol treatment and its inpatient program has served more than 10,000 clients since its inception in 1973. Clients in residential treatment progress through two, and sometimes up to three, phases: Primary Care, Secondary Care and, if applicable, the Extended Transitional Program.
Accommodations and Food
The main campus of Harbor House is on the service road of a highway in south Jackson, Mississippi’s capital and its most densely populated city. Despite that apparently uninviting location, the area is still relatively secluded and complimented by lots of grassy, open spaces and plenty of trees lining the property.
The main building is where counseling, dining and common rooms are located. Residents stay on the main campus, sleeping in twin beds (usually two to three per room) in small, college dorm-style rooms that are minimally furnished but comfortable. There are a total of 107 residential beds available through Harbor House, including the separate transitional care facility (which houses about 19 adults). Harbor House accommodates adults only and although about 50 percent of their clients are usually under 30, they treat people anywhere from 18 to 65 years old. There are more beds available for men than women so there are always a slightly higher number of men.
Clients eat in the cafeteria on campus. A variety of hot and cold options are prepared and available at every meal while clients are in primary care. Once residents transition into the second phase of the program, they are in charge of their own grocery shopping and meal preparation. (Funds for food are provided by the facility.)
Treatment and Staff
Harbor House has an on-site doctor as well as a team of registered nurses so all incoming clients undergo a physical check-up prior to treatment. Despite these medical resources, Harbor House does not offer a detox program at its facility. They make referrals and help with medication management and, in addition, dual diagnosis clients are assessed on a case-by-case basis.
The first phase of treatment at Harbor House is called Primary Care. Residents usually remain in this stage for six to eight weeks, but it can be as short as 30 days. Clients progress through gender-specific programming based on evidence-based practices, 12-step recovery principles and an individualized treatment plan. Treatment consists of weekly individual therapy, daily psycho-education and group therapy. Some form of physical activity is also part of the daily schedule.
Mornings begin as early as 6 am, though residents can sleep later on weekends. The first two hours of the day, clients dedicate themselves to cleaning, chores, personal reflection, prayer and breakfast. The rest of the morning is group therapy or lectures/films followed by discussion. After lunch, clients can expect more group therapy, individual therapy sessions, evaluations of peers and more educational sessions. Late afternoons are when clients exercise, do written assignments and socialize with other residents. Evenings are dedicated to 12-step meetings or a share from someone currently in treatment. Lights out is always at 10 pm on weekdays and 11:30 pm on weeknights.
The second phase at Harbor House spans 60 to 90 days and is dubbed the Secondary Care Program. With a foundation of sobriety under their belt and active participation in 12-step recovery, clients begin to seek employment or set career goals for current jobs. They learn time and money management, how to identify signs of possible relapse and the importance of reconnecting with family obligations. Clients in Secondary Care are responsible for being active in their own recovery by sharing in groups, completing house chores, being of service to their peers and finishing daily writing homework.
Finally, extended care is available for male clients only. The Extended Transitional Program is considered the third phase of treatment and if men are admitted (applications must be submitted as spots are limited), they are allowed to stay for up to nine months from the date they first began treatment. These residents are expected to set an example of what long-term sobriety and recovery should be: service-oriented, financially and professionally responsible and actively working a 12-step program. Clients are also expected to make themselves available to help newcomers to Primary Care and residents transitioning to Secondary Care.
There is a leadership team of 11 people at Harbor House. The current executive director is a former client of the facility and an active member of Jackson’s recovery community. The clinical staff consists of CADCs, the on-site doctor and the team of registered nurses. The men’s transitional home is separate from the main campus and is also staffed around the clock.
Harbor House clients all spend time on the ropes course. Residents complete a two-day, intensive, adventure-based counseling program that culminates with group processing sessions where the men and women can share reactions, emotions and lessons learned.
Every Thursday evening, clients’ loved ones have the option to participate in the Harbor House Family Program. Spanning six weeks, this service allows families to experience the same educational course as the residents in primary care. Topics are explored through speakers, short films or group processing sessions. The final portion of each Thursday evening is dedicated to visitation between residents and their family members. Participation in this part of the curriculum is not required but is highly encouraged.
Aftercare is gender-specific and available to anyone who has completed at least 30 days of primary care. Groups meet once a week and clients are expected to be active members of the 12-step community.
Although Harbor House does not accept Medicaid or Medicare, they do take private insurance and self-paying clients based on income. They offer a solid combination of spiritually centered and evidence-based practices and multi-tiered program options for those who are truly serious about their long-term recovery.
Harbor House of Jackson
5354 I-55 S Frontage Rd East
Jackson, MS 39272
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