U-Turn for Christ is a non-profit organization that provides Christian residential treatment for substance abuse at 14 locations in the US and seven others around the world. The organization is headquartered about 70 miles east of Los Angeles in Perris, California. While the U-Turn worship services and fellowship welcome everyone, most of the facilities cater exclusively to men. There are currently only women’s residential services offered in the flagship Perris location and in Lebanon, Pennsylvania, with more coming in the future.
The U-Turn for Christ ministry was created in 1990 by Pastor Gerry Brown and his wife Peggy, who are both recovering addicts. Although this is a faith-based program, applicants do not have to be Christian to apply. Still, they must be willing to participate in all Bible studies, church services and events. Anyone is eligible for U-Turn for Christ as long as they are over the age of 18, not a registered sex offender, do not have warrants for their arrest and are sober for least 24 hours prior to enrolling.
Accommodations and Food
Each U-Turn for Christ location is unique, but typically, there are no more than four clients per each gender-specific, dorm-style, furnished bedroom. Clients share bathrooms, as well. Cigarettes, tobacco, e-cigarettes and other nicotine products are prohibited. Clients are not allowed to bring a vehicle, cell phone, computer, tablets and other media players, reading material other than a Bible or hygiene products containing alcohol. They should bring church clothes but not any T-shirts or clothing with offensive logos. It is also recommended that residents do not bring any personal valuables or cash over $20.
The clients eat three daily meals served family style. Clients take turns working in the kitchen with meal prep, serving and clean up. There are a variety of food options available with each meal.
Treatment and Staff
U-Turn for Christ asks for a $500 per month donation, with a minimum two-month commitment, payable upon arrival, in the form of a cashiers check, money order or cash. U-Turn for Christ does not provide detox but can offer referrals to local facilities if necessary. Those on Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) are not accepted into the program since only non-narcotic medications are allowed on-site. Those with co-occurring disorders must sign a medical consent to be weaned off the medication at a rate of 25% per week over a four-week period. There are no exceptions. Any other medications must have a current prescription and clients are asked to bring a two-month supply.
The U-Turn for Christ program is divided up into two phases, with the maximum stay being about eight months. The first phase is a two-month period with very few privileges or responsibilities. The program is based exclusively on biblical teachings, with no psychology or 12-step component. There are no phone calls or e-mails allowed in or out during that month period. All outside communication, except on visiting day, is to be done by postal mail with immediate family members only.
Phase two lasts six months and incorporates life skills and household responsibilities like cleaning and kitchen chores and an increase in privileges, including phone calls and emails from immediate family, pastoral or legal counsel only—no friends are allowed to call or visit.
The team at each location includes a program director, interns and Christian peer counselors. The Browns work at the Perris location.
After a 12-day probation period following enrollment, residents can have visits on Sundays from 12:30 to 5 pm. Visitation is for immediate family only.
U-Turn for Christ is an expansive organization with ministries throughout the world. The highly structured substance abuse treatment program is primarily geared toward for men, but a couple locations serve women. With the strict focus on Christian values and zero tolerance for mental health meds, those requiring dual diagnosis support or clinical evidence-based treatment will not find their needs met. However, men open to a program of faith-based counseling will feel right at home.
U-Turn for Christ
20170 Patterson Ave
Perris, CA 92570
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