Heartland House was founded in 1960 by recovering alcoholics who wanted to share their enthusiasm about AA with other men who suffered from substance abuse. The rehab is operated by The Twelfth Step House of San Diego and offers a long-term residential program based solely on the 12-step, evidence-based approach to recovery. Heartland House also provides support for those who suffer from gambling addiction.
Accommodations and Food
The exterior of Heartland House is white with forest green trimming. Trees and shrubbery surround the building. The facility has a horseshoe pit in the back and an area reserved for smokers.
The residential program occupies a large home in the Mid-City section of San Diego that has space for 28 men. Residents are divided into three groups, each of which is housed on the second floor. The accommodations resemble the layout of a two bedroom apartment, minus the kitchen and bathroom. Rooms are supplied with armoires and dressers. There is one bathroom on the second floor and three bathrooms on the first floor.
Residents are served three hot meals a day that are prepared by a private chef. Breakfast fare includes oatmeal, cold cereals, pancakes, sausage, bacon, hash browns and toast. The lunch and dinner menus includes pizza, a choice of soup (New England clam chowder is a favorite), prime ribs and fish. Coffee and sodas are provided throughout the day and evening. Residents clean up the kitchen on a rotating basis.
Treatment and Staff
Residential treatment lasts for 90 days. One-on-one screening is required for admittance, and a resident must be clean and sober for 72 hours. On a case-by-case basis, Heartland House accepts residents who receive medication-assisted-treatment such as Suboxone. Drug and alcohol urine testing is conducted on a random basis.
The structured program begins with a three-day orientation period to allow the resident time to adjust to his new environment. Organized in two segments, the first part of the program focuses on emotional and physical recovery. The second part allows a resident to become actively involved in the 12 steps while pursuing long-term career goals.
Unlike other inpatient rehabs that tend to shelter residents from the outside world during treatment, residents leave the facility during the day to go to school and/or work and then go back to the rehab to attend meetings and/or therapy during the evenings. If a resident does not land a job or get into an educational program, he volunteers at the rehab.
Since residents leave the premises during the day, they are allowed to keep their cell phones. Curfew during the week is at 11 pm and midnight on the weekends.
Weekly treatment includes individual therapy, group therapy, relationship and family counseling and educational seminars. Group therapy topics include relapse prevention and living skills. Besides individual therapy, residents meet with their case managers. Psychiatric and medical referrals are provided for those suffering from co-occurring disorders.
The program also includes seminars on substance abuse awareness, HIV/AIDS, TB and hepatitis. Residents attend four on-site AA meetings and three off-site AA/NA meetings a week. Attendance is mandatory. In addition to closed meetings, Heartland House provides open meetings that the community is invited to attend.
Heartland House’s philosophy is for clients to maintain long term sobriety and to change their behavior and attitude by incorporating the 12 steps into all facets of their lives. Residents usually get sponsors and work the first three steps by the end of the first month. By the end of the 90-day period, most residents have completed steps three through nine.
Heartland House only accepts out-of-pocket payment. In addition, residents must commit to the 90-day program. Cost is $1,500 per month.
The staff includes five primary counselors and one intern, all of whom are in recovery.
A 50-inch widescreen TV, with a BluRay disc player, is in the day room and the amenities also include a fitness room where residents can work out.
For more than half a century, Heartland House has been helping men “trudge the road to happy destiny.” Not only is Heartland House a monument to the 12-step legacy, but it also provides residents with the opportunity to forge legacies of their own.
5855 Streamview Dr
San Diego, CA 92105
Heartland House Cost: $1,500 (30 days). Reach Heartland House by phone at (619) 287-5460 or by email at [email protected].
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