Jacob's Ladder at Brookside Farm Philosophy
Jacob's Ladder at Brookside Farm is a long-term mindfulness-based, residential recovery program for young men, situated in a private and majestic farming community. Peers and clinical partners facilitate healing through multiple modalities, including:
Mindfulness, meditation, and yoga,
12 step programs,
Music and arts programs,
Outdoor recreation excursions,
Facilitated therapy (individual, group, and family),
Farming and sustainability programs,
The goal of the Jacob’s Ladder program is to foster awakening, and authenticity through the synthesis of the 12-step principles, self-discovery through the deliberate practice of mindfulness, facilitation of expert clinical treatment, and interactive connection with a working farm environment.
Individualized and customized programs, based on clinical and philosophical models, separate Jacob's Ladder from other treatment settings.
Areas of Specialization
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.
Research shows that the odds of successful, sustained recovery from addiction are far higher when family members and loved ones are involved in treatment. Drug and alcohol addiction often have genetic roots, whether related to substance abuse, mental illness or both. Family dynamics also play a role and, often, family members are the first to realize a loved one has developed an addiction. Also, it’s important for family members to understand and embrace the lifestyle changes that are required to sustain recovery.
Meet the Staff
Kevin Blankenship, MD
The son of a coal miner, Kevin grew up in a small town in southern West Virginia. After graduating from high school, Kevin joined the U.S. Army to serve his country. After military service, Dr. Blankenship earned degrees in pharmacy and medicine and went on to complete his emergency medicine residency at West Virginia University. He became board certified in emergency medicine and worked in numerous medical settings throughout West Virginia. In 2014 an immediate family crisis with addiction brought Kevin face-to-face with the significant issue of this growing epidemic and the lack of recovery options throughout our country. Inspired by this experience, Dr. Blankenship has dedicated himself professionally to being part of the solution through directly serving the recovery industry and indirectly combating the stigma surrounding this issue in today's society. This dedication is what has become Jacob's Ladder.
Craig Cohen, LADC
Craig is a Licensed Drug and Alcohol Counselor who is instrumental in the multi-phasic design of the Jacob’s Ladder program, including the synthesis of 12 step programming and mindfulness based recovery. He attended Augsburg College with a major in Psychology and a minor in Theology where he graduated Magna Cum Laude. Later, he attended the Hazelden Graduate School of Addiction Studies where he graduated with High Honors. Craig has worked in the treatment of addiction for nearly two decades including early time spent in Chemical Dependency Specialist and Counselor roles in renowned facilities like Fairview and Hazelden, while most recently he’s owned and operated a successful intervention services business for families across the country.
Rehabs.com 360 Guide
ABOUT JACOB’S LADDER - BROOOKSIDE FARMS
Jacob’s Ladder at Brookside Farm is a short and long-term residential treatment facility designed for young adult males who are struggling with substance abuse issues. Set amidst the scenic rolling hills of historic Aurora, W.Va., Jacob’s Ladder is a work-therapy program that combines evidence-based approaches with the 12-Steps and holistic programming.
Medical detox is not available on site and clients in need of detox are required to do so prior to program entry.
TREATMENT & ASSESSMENT
To determine whether prospective clients are an appropriate fit for the recovery program, Jacob’s Ladder conducts bio-psychosocial assessments and expects a minimum stay of six months for the long-term program, although a short-term option lasting one month is also available.
As its name suggests, Jacob’s Ladder at Brookside Farm is accompanied by an adjacent farm, where a typical day in treatment consists of various farming chores designed to promote self-accountability, teamwork, and mindfulness. Using the oft-repeated phrase: “The work is never done,” the program’s official website draws a parallel between an active, working farm and a life of recovery. As such, daily tasks include tending to animals, hay baling, planting, watering, fence repair, machinery maintenance, and other seasonal duties.
In tandem with their assigned farming chores, men partake in a range of treatment activities. With evidence-based modalities — including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and rational emotive therapy (RET) — at its foundation, Jacob’s Ladder facilitates regular process and discussion groups, family therapy, and weekly one-on-one sessions with a primary counselor. Participation in the 12-Steps is also expected, offering clients 12-step meetings, study program literature, and associated “step-work.”
Beyond traditional therapies, Jacob’s Ladder emphasizes mindfulness through a range of holistic treatment methods. While caring for the farm, clients participate in music and art lessons, guided yoga, and daily meditation. Each week, Jacob’s Ladder arranges for weekly recreational outdoor activities, such as rafting, skiing, rock climbing, hiking, biking, fishing, camping, and more.
Founded and led by a board-certified medical doctor, Jacob’s Ladder employs a program director who is a licensed drug and alcohol counselor (LADC), a music and art director, a team of recovery coordinators, individuals with an in-depth understanding of the 12-step principles and the recovery process, and a yoga instructor. Brookside Farm’s manager oversees the program’s farming duties.
ACCOMMODATIONS & AMENITIES
Jacob’s Ladder sits across the street from Cathedral State Park, a 132-acre park with winding streams, old-growth forests, and miles of hiking trails. The program’s three-story, 14-bed residence is a renovated 19th century mountain lodge with a wrap-around deck, kitchen and dining room area, library, multiple bathrooms, and showers. According to the program’s website, residents’ sleeping quarters are “modest.”
As part of the recovery process, clients learn to prepare and cook their own meals as often as possible, often using produce from the farm itself.
WHAT ALUMNI SAY
The single alum polled by Rehabs.com at the time of this writing gave the facility perfect ratings of five out of five stars in 13 of the 15 categories they were polled on, including the facility’s family participation, its counseling options, and its holistic offerings. Despite noting “scheduling issues,” D.D called Jacob’s Ladder a “great, clean and affordable” program, adding that staff were “willing to work with you on your financing, and everyone is there to help you succeed.”
On the facility’s Facebook page, which it can edit, all eight reviewers to date gave perfect five-star reviews.
WHAT FRIENDS AND FAMILY SAY
To date, the loved ones surveyed by Rehabs.com have given Jacob’s Ladder excellent feedback. As a group, the four reviewers available at the time of this writing gave Jacob’s Ladder five- out of five-star ratings for the staff’s level of training and experience, the holistic opportunities available, and the cleanliness of the facilities.
In writing, family members found favor in the “warm, caring staff,” who provided “constant loving support,” and have a “have a deep desire to help the residents.” In a representative review, Leslie told Rehabs.com: “[The staff] have been a god send.”
WHAT STAFF SAY
As a group, the seven staff members polled by Rehabs.com at the time of this writing offered near-perfect ratings for almost every aspect of the facility they evaluated, including the facility’s cleanliness and its holistic offerings.
Additionally, staff members emphasized the impact of Jacob Ladder’s long-term recovery program. “The accomplishments of the young men who are finding themselves at Jacob's Ladder are humbling and inspiring!” E.L. wrote.
The cost for the long-term recovery program is $12,000 per month, with a sliding scale available for qualified applicants. Jacob’s Ladder does not accept any insurance, though according to the program’s website, financial aid is available.
Updated April 2017
Published on June 2017
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