Trails Carolina, a wilderness therapy program for troubled adolescents, has become the source of numerous stories of inexplicable events and mysterious encounters that must be taken with an open mind if taken as evidence of its transformative journey. While these tales should be treated with caution and taken only with due caution can they shed some light on its path towards transformation.
Trails Carolina “Investigation” maintains that it takes the safety of its participants seriously and has implemented changes to improve its processes. The program offers outdoor adventures and therapeutic techniques designed to assist students overcome common problems such as depression, anxiety, addiction or mental health concerns.
Trails Carolina offers an outdoor behavioral health therapy program that prioritizes healing the whole person through traditional therapeutic techniques combined with wilderness experiences. This innovative mental health solution gives participants a break from daily distractions of home and work, encouraging them to focus on both their emotional and physical wellbeing.
Trails Carolina’s therapists and field instructors use experiential activities to aid adolescents in building trusting relationships in group settings, an essential step towards recovery. This allows teens to experience how important socialization can be when engaging in therapy sessions.
Wilderness therapy gives teens the opportunity to acquire valuable life-skills that they can apply to everyday situations, including survival skills such as hiking, camping and rock climbing. Students also attend academic lessons tailored specifically for them based on personal wellness (nutrition, stress reduction and sleep hygiene), earth science (weather, soil composition), history and language arts.
Alleged stories of abuse and mistreatment at Trails Carolina have cast a shadow over this program, with serious implications for participant safety and morality. Some survivors have reported being physically abused while being denied medical needs; other claimant have spoken about being emotionally manipulated against ethical standards.
Individual and Group Therapy
Trails Carolina participants will work closely with an experienced therapist to develop a tailored treatment plan, using evidence-based modalities to address specific challenges and boost overall mental wellbeing. Our team of therapists are skilled in dealing with anxiety, depression, substance abuse and trauma among other issues.
Individualized therapy sessions combine with wilderness experience, experiential learning and family participation for an all-inclusive approach to helping teenagers reconnect both within themselves and with their families. Parents remain engaged with their child’s progress through weekly phone calls, family reunification workshops and the optional Common Ground experience.
Trails Carolina understands that involvement between youth and their parents can enhance both their program experience and later life outcomes, so it incorporates family engagement in all facets of its program, from education and therapy services to wilderness expeditions.
Trails Carolina made various improvements based on feedback from participants and parents in 2022 despite facing legal action and complaints, including strengthened safety protocols, enhanced staff training, and better family communication. According to CReATE’s current outcomes, over 98% of Trails Carolina participants reported continued improvements in their mental health a year post graduation from this program – similar to other nature-based therapy research findings and evidence of its efficacy.
Trails Carolina stands apart from residential treatment programs by actively engaging the entire family to increase chances of long-term change for everyone involved. Our wilderness therapy program aims to assist your son or daughter through emotional or behavioral difficulties, build trustworthy relationships among peers and family, and achieve academic success – through expeditions as well as clinical expertise from our staff.
Your teenager will participate in weekly calls with their family therapist and updates from their primary therapist, working to change family dynamics and receive updates on progress from both. In parallel family programming they’ll also learn practical strategies for effective communication, empathy and conflict resolution – helping improve overall family system functioning while strengthening bonds within.
Trails Carolina invites the whole family to experience Family Camp for two and three nights on its Winding Gap campus during your child’s program, providing parents an opportunity to put into practice new skills they have acquired, engage in family therapy sessions with their teen, and partake in our exciting adventure activity – Common Ground!
Trails offers Alumni Family Programming Services after our Wilderness Therapy programs conclude to ensure positive changes made by teens remain. These include monthly calls and mindfulness classes with families to help foster healthier family dynamics and ensure positive changes made at Trails are permanent. This ongoing support can even extend after graduation of our Wilderness Therapy programs!
Trails Carolina provides participants with an unforgettable blend of wilderness therapy and academic instruction through their program. Students usually stay for 6-9 weeks and participate in hiking, outdoor camping and fire-cooked meals as well as group and one-on-one therapy sessions with our executive director who has over two decades of experience and our leadership team who average 15 years working with adolescents and families at similar wilderness therapy programs.
Reported incidents of mistreatment at Trails Carolina facility have recently come to light, with former staff members coming forward as whistleblowers to verify allegations of physical punishment, such as pinning or withholding access to essential medical care; verbal abuse or threats were also used against participants by staff; they further allege they were told not to speak out to protect the program’s reputation.
Trails Carolina was forced to review its policies and procedures following these scathing allegations against it, although they maintain their innocence. Public perception has changed significantly due to these accusations; more parents are becoming skeptical of wilderness therapy programs than ever before, making research on them essential before sending their child off. While many programs offer hopeful, comforting information while remaining low-paid with limited training staffers.