Thunder Road Youth Services in Oakland, CA

Call (510) 653-5040 to Contact Thunder Road Youth Services

Overall Rating

(5 of 5)
Treatment Effectiveness
Accommodations & Amenities
Meals & Nutrition
390 40th Street
Oakland CA 94609

Thunder Road Youth Services Philosophy

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Review by Contributors


Thunder Road Youth Services offers a full continuum of treatment services and programs for teens aged 13 to 19 struggling with substance abuse and other addictive behaviors in Oakland, Calif. A service of Alta Bates Summit Medical Center, Thunder Road Youth Services is one of just 279 (21.3 percent) facilities in the state of California that works specifically with teens; it is also one of 324 (24.7 percent) that offers short-term inpatient care, and one of 440 (33.6 percent) that runs long-term residential treatment. Outpatient services and aftercare are also available.


All teens undergo an initial substance abuse history assessment upon admission to help staff recommend an appropriate level of care. According to its website, Thunder Road Youth Services is designed to treat teens “involved in the habitual abuse of nicotine, alcohol, or drugs. These intensive services emphasize harm-reduction and person-centered treatment.

While the short-term inpatient program admits walk-in clients, the long-term residential program is designed only for youth referred by a governmental agency. Participants benefit from a structured curriculum of evidence-based services designed "to make fundamental improvements in their social, emotional and behavioral functioning.” Family counseling sessions and group therapy, including gender-specific sessions, are also on schedule, helping teens work through issues commonly dealt with amongst teenage males and females struggling with substance abuse.

Similar to residential care, IOP offers participants opportunity for individual, group, and family counseling to address any underlying issues that may be contributing to relapse. Upon program completion, families are invited to attend weekly aftercare sessions and keep in touch via the nonprofit’s alumni organization.


Thunder Road Youth Services employs a multidisciplinary team of substance abuse counselors, child and adolescent psychologists, nurses, social workers, and case managers.


There is currently no information provided by the center regarding its living arrangements and related offerings: the sole individual surveyed by, however, gave five out of five stars for the facility's cleanliness and upkeep.


In the sole survey response for to date, an anonymous family member celebrated most areas, awarding five out of five stars for discharge planning, the communication policies, and the family programming. “The family visiting and family therapy interaction was very beneficial,” they wrote. The reviewer also shared five out of five stars for the staff’s level of training and experience, noting: “Everyone that worked there was great. Always available to answer questions.”


Secondary sources revealed generally critical perspectives amongst employees. On Indeed, where four employees gave the center an average rating of 2.5 out of five stars, reviewers cited an unsupportive and “lazy” management team. “Little to no emotional support. The whole organization is emotionally burnt out...” one representative reviewer wrote.[1]


Alta Bates Summit Medical Center accepts major private insurance plans, such as Aetna, Cigna, and Blue Cross Blue Shield, making it one of only 734 (56.0 percent) facilities in the state of California to do so. The center also accepts Medi-Cal and offers financial assistance for eligible clients.


Published on January 2019

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Everyone that worked there was great. Always available to answer questions. The family visiting and family therapy interaction was very beneficial.

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