Hillcrest Center in Lenox specializes in the treatment of adolescent girls with severe psychiatric, emotional and behavior disorders. Most students at Hillcrest Center have experienced physical and/or sexual abuse and have become severely aggressive, sexually reactive, self-injurious, or engage in fire setting. Most have been in psychiatric hospitals prior to Hillcrest Center and/or have not succeeded in other residential settings due to the severity of their needs and behaviors. Many Hillcrest Center students also have significant learning disabilities.
Within an intensely structured, therapeutic and nurturing environment with high staff ratios, students learn the appropriate social skills and self-regulation necessary to succeed in a less restrictive setting in their home community. The extreme and/or dangerous behaviors that resulted in past failure are replaced with alternative safe, pro-social behaviors so that students are able to experience success, foster positive relationships, learn and grow.
Hillcrest Center's 14-acre campus provides excellent recreational opportunities utilizing two athletic fields, a playground, swimming pools and a full size gymnasium. Students participate in camping, biking, skiing and other outdoor activities year round. The surrounding Berkshire communities offer a wide variety of educational, cultural and recreational resources.
Hillcrest Center utilizes a trauma-informed, skill development program (Skills for Life). In addition, Hillcrest Center offers Girls Circle, an “intensely structured support group for girls that integrates relational theory, resiliency practices, and skills training in a specific format designed to increase positive connections, personal and collective strengths, and competence in girls. It aims to counteract social and interpersonal forces that impede girls’ growth and development by promoting an emotionally safe setting and structure within which girls can develop caring relationships and use authentic voices.”