Wayras House is a residential treatment program for adult men struggling with chemical dependency and co-occurring mental disabilities. Located in Poughkeepsie, New York, the program is a long-term track that provides a nurturing and understanding residential setting. Wayras House is under the Abilities First umbrella, a non-profit organization that started in 1962. Abilities First works with a wide range of New York residents—both children and adults—who suffer from a range of mild to severe disabilities.
Accommodations and Food
The facility is located on a compound nestled in the Hudson Valley, midway between New York City and Albany. The house is surrounded by trees in a rural natural setting. There is a residential home as well as secondary buildings for recreational and therapeutic activities. The main residential home accommodates up to 12 men. There are six double-occupancy bedrooms and four shared bathrooms. Clients are encouraged to bring their own toiletries but linens are provided by the facility. Keeping the space clean and managed is required.
The house has several communal areas including a living room with TV and DVD player. Watching TV is permitted during approved hours and only approved material. The kitchen area is managed and meals are prepared by the residents so that clients learn self-care skills and how to feed themselves. Clients with more severe disabilities are assisted with daily tasks as needed. Very minimal caffeine and sugar is permitted, healthy meals with some comfort food options are standard.
Treatment and Staff
Wayras House offers a safe residential recovery setting for adult men with disabilities. The program is long term, typically taking a total of one year to help clients regain their lives and self-sufficiency. In addition to participating in chemical dependency treatment, clients receive guidance to work towards more independence. The program is 12-step model focused, and provides the clients with tools for recovery. Prior to admission, all clients are seen by intake staff to fully determine their diagnosis and acuity of chemical dependency. If the client has medical issues, a nursing staff is available to assist them. Referral to detox is available as well as medication management.
Seven days a week, clients engage in therapeutic activities. Group therapy is attended on a daily basis. Individual therapy is also attended frequently to ensure the men are absorbing their new skills and knowledge. Groups focus on impulse control, communication skills, conflict resolution and relapse prevention techniques as well as development of social skills. Because the clients are disabled, the Wayras House also utilizes creative therapies. Art therapy and recreation help clients access and identify their emotions and understand their history—processes that can be difficult for those with cognitive delays. Some groups are also skill oriented to help clients develop the ability to self-care—including money management, traveling alone, hygiene, cooking and caring for the home. Clients also attend 12-step meetings in the local area five days per week, becoming very familiar with AA/NA principles and they are guided through the steps.
The clinical staff at Wayras House are all certified to work with individuals with disabilities. Credentials include LCSWs, LPCs and CADCs. Residential counselors are always on the property to provide support and care. During the week, a Creative Arts Specialist and a Recreation Therapist see the residents. A nurse practitioner is also always available.
Residents are kept very active during their stay with traditional and creative therapies as well as physically. Clients get regular exercise by going on walks and playing games outside on the property.
Sometimes residents are taken off-campus for outings to movies or bowling. These activity privileges are given to clients are they progress through the program and gain more independence and sober skills.
The Wayras House under Abilities First, offers residential chemical dependency treatment for adult men with cognitive and physical disabilities. Over the course of a year, clients are gently introduced to freedom from chemicals and shown how to recover. Acquiring skills for living and socializing helps clients to overcome their fears and previous difficulties in society. The men are seen by experienced staff members who are credentialed to work with disabled individuals.
Abilities First, Inc.
101 Inwood Ave
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
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