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Native American Connections — Outpatient

4520 N Central Avenue, Suite 600, Phoenix, Arizona, 85012
Native American Connections - Guiding Star is a residential treatment facility for chemically-dependent women struggling with substance abuse and co-occurring mental health concerns. Guiding Star combines traditional Native American healing practices with contemporary evidence-based methods to produce a holistically-informed addiction treatment program that addresses maladies of the mind, body, and spirit. During their stay, residents are invited to participate in storytelling, smudging/ purification rites, native crafts, Red Road teachings, Talking Circles, cultural presentations, songs and drumming, Circle of Strength, and more.

Facility Highlights

  • Specialized Treatment
  • Case Management
  • Family Counseling


  • Individualized Treatment

    Some facilities have an addiction treatment protocol that all patients or clients are expected to follow, while others customize or individualize treatment based on a person’s unique needs and circumstances. Factors that may affect treatment decisions include age, lifestyle, medical conditions, type of drug, religious beliefs, etc.
  • Holistic Therapy

    Facilities that offer “holistic therapy” see and treat patients in the context of their entire lives and health status. They treat the “whole person,” not just the addiction.

Facility Settings

  • Average Location/Amenities

Meet the Staff

  • Yvonne Fortier LPC, LISAC
    Yvonne Fortier LPC, LISACDirector of Clinical Services
    Yvonne has over 25 years of combined experience in business administration and behavioral health care. Her clinical training, experience, and supervisory experience includes child and family therapy, play and sand tray therapies, substance abuse and co-occurring disorders, and practices that integrate indigenous healing interventions with current approaches in counseling and psychology. Yvonne joined Native American Connections in 2003.
  • Diana Yazzie-Devine
    Diana Yazzie-DevinePresident/CEO
    Diana “Dede” Yazzie Devine has been working within Native American urban and tribal entities since 1972 and has been employed as the CEO of Native American Connections (NAC) since 1979. Ms. Devine has an MBA from Arizona State University and holds International and State license in behavioral health counseling. Ms. Devine’s leadership and dedication have been recognized within the community with the following honors: Valley Leadership’s Woman of the Year (2003), ONE (Organization for Nonprofit Executives) Executive Director of the Year (2006), YWCA’s Business Leader Award (2008); Arizona’s Centennial Legacy Project – Arizona’s 48 Most Intriguing Women (2012); Phoenix Business Journal’s 25 Most Admired CEOs (2012), and ASU WP Carey School of Business Hall of Fame (2012).

Treatment Center Links

Rehabs 360 Guide


Since 1972, Native American Connections (NAC), Inc. has provided culturally appropriate mental health and substance abuse treatment, affordable housing, and community services to Native Americans in the Phoenix, Ariz., area. Along with providing intensive outpatient programs (IOP), the non-profit organization operates a residential treatment facility for adults struggling with substance use and co-occurring disorders.

The facility can treat and accommodate pregnant women and women with young children. Medical detox is not available on-site. In Arizona, the facility is among the 2.3 percent of facilities to accommodate clients' children.


According to the facility's website, to be admitted into the NAC residential program, clients can be referred from another agency, make an appointment, or attend an intake session on weekday mornings. Clients may participate in an initial assessment to determine their needs. Typically, residential treatment lasts 45 days, however the length varies and is determined by progress.

Programming is holistic, aiming to heal the mind, body, and spirit, and the facility integrates Native American culture and spirituality into evidence-based practices. For instance, group therapy is held in Talking Circles, where participants process topics about addiction and freely express concerns.

Treatment includes sweat lodge sessions, smudging, songs and drumming, Red Road teachings, Native crafts, storytelling, and cultural presentations. The facility also holds on-site 12-step meetings. Along with core programming, clients prepare for discharge by attending life skills classes and workforce development activities.

Once a client completes residential treatment, they may utilize the IOP as an aftercare continuum of care. The IOP lasts eight weeks and involves individual, family and group counseling, educational classes, and case management. In addition, NAC provides transitional housing for homeless women; residents must be enrolled in the IOP during their stay, as well as participate in cultural activities and in an in-house support group.


NAC is licensed by the Arizona Department of Health Services and has partnerships with the State Regional Behavioral Health Authority (RBHA), Tribal RBHAs, Tribes, and Indian Health Services. The treatment team includes licensed professional counselors and licensed social workers. Some program alumni return as staff members to serve as behavioral health technicians or recovery coaches. Both individuals surveyed by Rehabs.com to date indicated satisfaction with the treatment staff.


NAC’s Patina Wellness Center consists of 70 beds. Clients share simple double-occupancy bedrooms, while mothers with children stay in private bedrooms. On-site childcare is available during program sessions. The facility features comfortable communal areas and a fitness center with Tai Chi and guided yoga sessions. Meals are freshly-prepared on-site.


Two alumni polled by Rehabs.com at the time of this writing provided mainly positive feedback, as reflected in their ratings for the major categories of the survey: treatment effectiveness, accommodations and amenities, and meals and nutrition. One awarded perfect five stars consistently for the major metrics referenced whereas the other assigned three and four stars.

The five-star alum would recommend the treatment center to friends and family and rated additional metrics the top five stars, including facility cleanliness and upkeep as well as staff support. "It didnt cost me anything out of pocket but i am still clean," they wrote. The other gave three out of five stars for 12-step practices, facility cleanliness and upkeep as well as likelihood to recommend. However, they noted they had too "much free time."

On secondary sites, NAC – Phoenix received positive coverage to date: 4.5 out of five stars based on 53 reviews on Facebook, which the organization can manage; and five stars based on one review on Yelp. [1] [2] Multiple people credited the center with saving their lives. "I owe my life to all the awesome staff at NAC," Cheryl wrote in a representative review. "Keep up the great work!! U r all changing lives. I will never forget what u did for me n my whole family!” On the negative end, one reviewer wrote “stench and disease” and another noted difficulties with the Behavioral Department for children.


On secondary sites, the center received mixed reviews to date: 3.7 out of five stars based on 31 reviews on Indeed and 2.9 stars based on 11 reviews on Glassdoor. [3] [4] Many reviewers cited friendly and caring coworkers as well as a supportive work environment as facility strengths, as reflected in comments by a therapist: "I enjoyed working at NAC. My supervisors were supportive, educated, skilled, and knowledgeable. I enjoyed the culture and the client’s that I worked with. I learned a lot from the culture, peers and clients." Negative comments concerned lack of leadership communication and micromanagement as well as low pay, limited raises, and high staff turnover.


There currently is no information provided on the facility's website or elsewhere online regarding costs. One alum indicated to Rehabs.com they had no out-of-pocket costs, which suggests the center accepts insurance and/or among the 24.3 percent of facilities to accept IHS/Tribal/Urban (ITU) funds.

[1] https://www.facebook.com/NativeAmericanConnections/
[2] yelp.com/biz/native-american-connections-Phoenix-5
[3] https://www.indeed.com/cmp/Native-American-Connections/reviews
[4] glassdoor.com/Reviews/Native-American-Connections-Reviews-E985703.htm

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