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Second Nature (Wilderness Program)

382 W Main St, Duchesne, Utah, 84021
Second Nature Footsteps is a licensed, clinically driven wilderness intervention designed to meet the needs of younger teens, ages 11-14. The treatment team uses a variety of wilderness and experiential interventions to assist students along their individual path towards personal awareness, responsibility, improved communication healthy relationship skills, and strengthened self-esteem. Footsteps staff further assist each child and family with supportive stabilization and assessment for students whose behavior has reached crisis level.

Facility Highlights

  • Academic Curriculum
  • Adolescent Services
  • Adult Services

Specialization

  • Remote - Free of Distractions

    What you'll realize when you enter the wilderness is that the distractions you've adapted to your lifestyle are not as easily present. The remoteness of the backcountry provides little to hide behind. This will empower you to focus directly on your issues without distraction. Although you may demonstrate high functioning in several areas of your life, the richness of the wilderness environment will evoke the unhealthy patterns of behavior that brought you to this point in your life. Additionally, your group experience facilitates engaging with your peers and field instructors without using familiar escape routes of shutting down, running away, or other responses you may have used to avoid confrontation and accountability. You are provided with a safe and patient environment to confront what you may be avoiding.
  • Empowerment

    Nature is unrelenting; it cannot be negotiated with or manipulated. Parents, teachers and therapists can all be emotionally manipulated. A towering cumulus cloud cannot. There is no negotiating the weather. A mountain will not feel guilty and step aside for a hiker. You will experience the natural lessons that life has to offer by living in the natural environment. Your therapist, Field Instructors and peers will help hold you to appropriate boundaries and create natural and logical consequences that mirror the achievements and challenges in the broader journey of life. Your experience becomes a life lesson of how ineffective past coping strategies were, while equally supporting your insight in adapting your actions into successful and valuable tools.

Facility Settings

  • Mountains

Meet the Staff

  • Cheryl Kehl, LCSW
    Cheryl Kehl, LCSWFounder
    Cheryl has supervised social work interns, designed and implemented in-service curriculum for field staff, and taught in the Masters Degree Program in Social Work at Brigham Young University. In 2003, Cheryl was elected by her colleagues throughout the United States to serve as a board member for the National Association for Therapeutic Schools and Programs. Having received her CSW degree in 1993 and her LCSW license in 1995, Cheryl has a long history of practicing therapy and working with adolescents. Prior to founding Second Nature, she was the Clinical Director at Aspen Achievement Academy (a therapeutic wilderness program in southern Utah) where she worked as a wilderness therapist and staff supervisor for five years. Her experience also includes serving as the Clinical Director at Aspen Ranch (a residential treatment program for adolescents in southern Utah), as a therapist at the Comprehensive Clinic at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, Wasatch Mental Health and the American Psychological Association in Salt Lake City, Utah. Cheryl completed her studies at Brigham Young University where she received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Sociology and her Masters Degree in Social Work. Her clinical training included working with homeless and mentally ill clients, providing individual, family and marriage counseling, etc. Cheryl is the oldest of ten children and has two adult children of her own, a daughter and a son. Her interests include water sports, photography, and spending time with her family and friends. She loves house-boating on Lake Powell, but her current favorite pastime is spending time with her adorable grandsons Warren and Wyatt.
  • Brad Reedy, Ph.D., L.M.F.T.
    Brad Reedy, Ph.D., L.M.F.T.Founder
    Brad began his studies at Brigham Young University where he graduated Magna Cum Laude with a B.S. in Family Science. Next, he attended Loma Linda University where he received an M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy. He returned to B.Y.U. and completed his Ph.D. in Marriage and Family Therapy. Brad's clinical experience includes working with sexually abused children, domestically violent offenders, adults/adolescents with substance abuse and children suffering with grief and loss. Research and clinical interests include treatment with sexual abuse victims, family trauma and associated processes, chemical dependence, personality disorders, sexual perpetrators, and developmental psychology. Brad works with a variety of populations that often include students with dual diagnoses and gifted intelligence. In the public sector, Brad worked with young victims of physical and sexual abuse at Loma Linda University Hospital, domestic violence victims and perpetrators at Riverside Family Service Agency, and sexual perpetrators at Center for Family Development. In private practice, Brad has also worked with individuals and families with eating disorders and other addictions. Brad worked as a field therapist and Clinical Director with Aspen Achievement Academy and Aspen Ranch. Born and raised in Orange County, California, the middle of three boys, Brad was raised by his mother. He grew up surfing, listening to Bob Dylan, and causing his mom a great deal of grief. Brad is married and has four children. He enjoys golf, wakeboarding, and is a passionate triathlete. He is an avid fan of the Los Angeles Lakers and the Los Angeles Angels and can be easily engaged in a debate on any sports-related topic.

Treatment Center Links

Rehabs 360 Guide

ABOUT SECOND NATURE (WILDERNESS PROGRAM)

Second Nature Wilderness Program (SNWP) has been offering treatment for the past 20 years to help adolescents between the ages of 13 and 17 who are struggling with a range of mental, emotional, or behavioral health problems, including drug abuse and learning disabilities.

Although the organization’s main office is in Duchesne, Utah, camping locations vary. Promoting itself as “simply the gold standard in wilderness therapy, SNWP seeks to assist clients achieve balance through outdoor experiences. Within the state, the organization is among 27.2 percent of substance abuse treatment programs the offer residential, non-hospital care, 28.5 percent with specially tailored programs for adolescents, and among 58.2 percent with programs for clients with co-occurring disorders.

TREATMENT & ASSESSMENT

At SNWP, clients undergo an initial assessment which matches them with a group suited to their individual psychiatric needs. For instance, those with similar struggles might be grouped together. “Students,” as they are called, recover through engaging in camping experiences such as building and tearing down campsites and hiking three to five miles each day. Groups operate like a family with each individual performing simple chores.

Students work through four stages of treatment called earth, water, fire, and air. Additionally, teens receive one to two hours of individual therapy each week as well as daily group therapy. Combined with the "healing power of nature," staff utilize cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), as well as psychodynamic, family systems, and developmental theoretical models. When necessary, clients also receive medication management.

An accredited Special Purpose Private School, SNWP provides each client with a curriculum packet with lessons designed to continue their education and develop skills for academic success. The program offers participants an opportunity to receive credit for completed coursework.

Aftercare planning begins at the same time as treatment. Staff communicate with parents back home about medication changes and encourage participation in family therapy. The facility offers parent workshops and support groups and asks that parents participate in planning for continuing care.

STAFF CREDENTIALS

SNWP employs a clinical director, psychiatrist, medical director and coordinator, principal, parent coach, as well as numerous therapists for both the boys’ and girls’ groups.

ACCOMMODATIONS & AMENITIES

Residents stay in shelters they build themselves and are supplied with fresh food and water twice during the week to make meals. All gear needed to camp and hike is provided, as are meals rich in fresh fruit, meats, vegetables, grains, and nuts.

WHAT ALUMNI SAY

At the time of this writing, four former clients submitted mostly favorable feedback to Rehabs.com about SNWP: three highly positive impressions and one decidedly negative. On the plus side, the four alum awarded the maximum five stars for most of the major categories of the survey, including consistent five-star ratings for treatment effectiveness.

They repeatedly praised the program and the caring, yet strict staff, several proclaiming that this combination helped turn their life around, as an anonymous alum wrote: “Changed my life in a good way. They work for the clients to get the best results possible and don’t let struggles get in their way of that goal.”

Another reviewer in this pro-SNWP group summed up the experience for Rehabs.com: “One of the BEST outdoor wilderness programs if you do the work.” The negative reviewer referred to the program as “abuse not therapy” and, having experienced an unrelated traumatic event before signing up, added, “it made it worse.”

On secondary sites, SNWP received positive coverage to date: three out of five stars based on 19 reviews on Yelp, and 4.7 stars based on 21 reviews on Facebook, which the organization can manage. [1] [2] Similar to comments former clients made to Rehabs.com, those who posted on these sites appreciated the results they achieved, but acknowledged the program pushed them beyond their comfort level.

Five-star reviewer Grace wrote on Facebook: “As much as I THOUGHT I hated every day of my time here, 2NWP saved my life. Let me correct myself, I thought I hated it until the day I left, went out into the work and realized how much it had helped me.”

WHAT FRIENDS & FAMILY SAY

The five loved ones who reviewed SNWP for Rehabs.com to date submitted mostly negative impressions: one favorable and four unfavorable. The positive reviewer awarded the top five stars to treatment effectiveness and wrote: “It was good.” The other four loved ones assigned only one out of five stars to the major categories of the survey, including treatment effectiveness.

Negative reviewers claimed the program created more family and personal problems, as reflected in comments made to Rehabs.com by one parent: “Send your kid somewhere local. Don't ruin your relationship with them or have them come back with worse problems than they did before you sent them.”

FINANCING

SNWP is out-of-network with insurance carriers but provides materials for clients and their families to seek reimbursements from their providers. Through the facility’s relationship with Prosper Healthcare Lending, clients may receive favorable rates to help pay for treatment. According to the organization’s website, “some of the services provided at Second Nature may qualify under a medical tax deduction.”

[1] https://www.yelp.com/biz/second-nature-wilderness-family-therapy-duchesne

[2] https://www.facebook.com/pg/SecondNatureWilderness/reviews/?ref=page_internal

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