Day One - Homeless Youth in South Portland, ME

Overall Rating

(4.3 of 5)
Treatment Effectiveness
Accommodations & Amenities
Meals & Nutrition
525 Main Street
South Portland ME 04106

Day One - Homeless Youth Philosophy

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Review by Contributors


Day One is a Maine-based agency that provides prevention and treatment services to adolescents and young adults struggling with substance use disorder. It's one of 42 facilities in Maine to offer services specifically tailored to teens, which makes up just 18.3 percent of facilities in the state. It's also one of the 54 (24 percent) Maine facilities that provides specialized treatment to young adults.

Day One has a variety of programs, including outpatient, intensive outpatient, and a residential program in Hollis Center. The facility's program for homeless youth, which is located in downtown Portland, provides clients between the ages of 14 and 21 with basic needs, as well as treatment services when appropriate.


According to the facility's website, Day One’s program for homeless youth works in partnership with the Preble Street Teen Center, where struggling youth can find basic necessities such as food and shelter.

Day One staff come to the center to make connections with these clients and offer helpful services such as intervention, mental health and/or addiction counseling, and case management. The hope is that homeless clients who are experiencing problems with substance use disorder will agree to attend one of Day One's treatment programs.

The facility operates three gender-separate residential rehabs for youth aged 13 to 20. Two of these facilities are located around 20 miles west of Portland, while one is located 100 miles northeast, in Hinckley.

All three residential program last for six months and use the Seven Challenges, a developmentally appropriate, evidence-based addiction recovery program specifically for adolescents. Programming also includes individual, group, and family counseling, along with life skills training, relapse prevention, and discharge planning.

The intensive outpatient program (IOP) is offered from the South Portland office, and provides programming three hours a day, three days a week, for up to eight weeks, plus aftercare. General outpatient care is also available.


Staff include licensed alcohol and drug counselors and licensed clinical social workers. The two alumni polled by to date gave the facility four and five out of five stars for its staff's level of training and experience.


The facility's website indicates education is provided on-site at the residential facilities. Teens staying at these facilities are also required to complete chores such as laundry, cooking, and budgeting. The two former clients surveyed by to date gave Day One four and five out of five stars for its cleanliness.


The two alumni polled by at the time of this writing provided positive feedback, and indicated that they would recommend Day One's Homeless Youth program. They awarded the program four or five out of five stars in most of the 15 evaluated treatment metrics, including overall treatment effectiveness, holistic options, counseling options, and affordability.

Both alumni also stressed that staff showed respect and made them feel cared for. “The staff is amazing," one wrote. "They never treat you like a broken victim and are available 24/7. I always felt like I was being treated and not talked down in any way."

On Day One's Facebook page[1] (which the facility has the ability to manage), the organization as a whole received an average rating of 4.2 out of five stars based on 11 review.


According to the center's website, the Homeless Youth program is able to provide free services via funding from the United Way of Greater Portland and elsewhere. No-charge treatment for clients who cannot pay is offered by 39 percent of facilities in Maine.


Published on November 2018

User Reviews

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  • Treatment Effectiveness
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Great variety of programs. Some staff stuck to schedules better than others It's a great program staffed by wonderful people. They did their best to help me anytime day or night.


  • Treatment Effectiveness
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Great staff that really cared. It was difficult to find/get to. The staff is amazing. They never treat you like a broken victim and are available 24/7. I always felt like I was being treated and not talked down in any way.

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