Steps Recovery Center is an outgrowth of founder Mike Jorgensen’s personal experience with alcoholism. In addition to being in recovery himself, it was in searching for a treatment program for his daughter that Jorgensen began to consider designs for his own facility. Steps Recovery is defined by two major principles that Jorgensen wanted to incorporate: comprehensive family involvement and affordability. Steps is committed to finding a way for potential attendees, no matter what their economic situation.
Accommodations and Food
Steps has facilities in Payson and St. George in Southern Utah, with a brand new facility in Salt Lake City. The Payson facility is a converted rest home open to men and women, with housing for each sex separated on each side of the grounds. Rooms are shared by two clients each, with up to 34 on-site at a time.
Having alternate facilities in St. George and Salt Lake City means that Steps has a system in place to prevent overcrowding, which is a potential issue with the resident volume and size of facility. Steps has an in-house chef who prepares each breakfast and lunch meal. Dinners are actually made by clients themselves, who take turns cooking, serving and cleaning up for each other with food prep provided by the in-house chef.
Treatment and Staff
Steps employs a medical director who visits the facility twice a week and monitors residents who are on medication; there is is also a nurse on-site who administers medication to them. In addition, Steps has around seven counselors on hand at a time to handle group sessions and activities. Finally, a dietitian works with the chef to make sure all meals are right for clients.
As its name implies, Steps Recovery Center not only uses the 12-step model for recovery but also follows a basic three-tiered approach to treatment. Stage One is the pre-residential phase, where a client’s family gets intervention training followed by their son or daughter’s admission and detox.
Stage Two is the inpatient program, which is heavy on 12-step meetings but also includes anger management classes, stress training and other lifestyle-oriented seminars; dual-diagnosis support is available as well. The days are busy ones, with a gym workout each weekday morning, followed by breakfast and then chores. Most weekdays they have either a meeting or group therapy activity. Yoga is offered three times a week, along with equine therapy twice a week. Afternoons are filled with study time or more group activities, and family involvement is key to the process, whenever possible. Every Thursday there’s a family visit for group therapy, individual sessions and dinner. Friday nights usually involve a group recreation activity such as attending a movie and Saturdays allow plenty of free time for the clients, often also featuring a group excursion.
Finally, Stage Three is a comprehensive aftercare program that includes the option to move into a sober living home, and access to the Steps treatment team going forward. Average stays at Steps last 30 days, but it is more than accommodating of longer stays (even upwards of 90 days), believing that longer residencies are endemic to lasting recovery.
With daily trips to the gym, a nearby stable for equine training and hiking excursions in the nearby Wasatch Mountains, recreation is central to the daily Steps Recovery Center routine. The program also offers experiential therapies, which include a series of physical challenges as part of the recovery process. In addition to some of the recreation options available, there is an on-site ropes class, with a training regimen that increases in difficulty as the course progresses.
While much of Steps Recovery Center handles the traditional duties of a quality rehabilitation center, it stands apart with the comprehensive family program and payment options. In keeping with Jorgensen’s original inspiration, it offers aid in the delicate process of intervention, group counseling with the client and self-help sessions for the family members themselves.
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