Home or Offsite Visits
There are three home visits scheduled during the course of the program. The first home visit is for one week, the second home visit is for two weeks., and the third home visit is for ninety days. Each home visit requires a home visit contract drafted by your son, with your input, and approved by the White River Academy faculty.
Home visits take place when your student is close to completing the program. The purpose for the timing and duration is to see how your student and family handle the stages of transition. The home contracts that will be drafted are evolutionary, meaning the original contract for the first home visit is analyzed and updated after each visit in order to identify what went well and what didn’t go well and make changes to the contract.
There is a 30 day period between the first and second home visit in order for you and your student to therapeutically process the home visit with the help of your family therapist. Sometimes a third home visit is recommended, if necessary. The final contract will serve as your ninety day contract that your student will be expected to follow upon returning home.
Home Visit’s are not a “break” from the program but are an extension of the program. Having put forth so much consistent effort to work toward this point, it would be for naught if both you and your student set aside all that effort and return to old behavioral patterns drawing upon false motivators for continued change and growth.
Purpose of a Home Visit
What is the purpose of your home visit or home contract? Your student being enrolled at White River Academy is, in many ways, an ultimate show of love and concern. Your son will have the opportunity to grow and develop as an individual. They will gain an understanding that although you love them deeply, trust is something that must still be developed.
The program is difficult for a reason and something your child will not expect or want to do and ultimately this program is about trust. As students help and care for others, their peers, and themselves; and as they begin to make correct choices that show that they understand and accept responsibility for themselves, they gain trust in the program, trust from their peers and trust in themselves. This is how they progress to the point that they are ready for home visits to take place and ultimately graduation. This sets the stage for the purpose of the home contract.
A home contract is an opportunity for your student to outline just how much they are willing to do in order to gain trust back from their care givers, parents, and the rest of their family. For some, just like the program, it will be harder to do, but by the time your student graduates from the program they will understand that it is their responsibility to do so. It will be up to you and your family to create a mini-program that you will follow for the first 90 days so that the trust that both of you want can be earned.