Over the last 42 years, Excelsior has grown and changed to better serve the needs of our youth, stakeholders and communities. Our roots extend over 100 years when a group of Roman Catholic Nuns came to Colorado to start an orphanage. In 1973 the Nuns could no longer care for the girls that were being sent to them so two community leaders came forward and Excelsior was born. We added a school and started accepting girls from out-of-state. Then we launched a community-based program to support even more youth and reach them earlier.
Now, we are in the process of evolving again. First and foremost, you’ll notice that we’ve shortened our name from Excelsior Youth Center. The newly branded Excelsior reflects recent operational changes including an expansion of family-focused programming and short-term treatment options. Moving forward, Excelsior’s vision complements what current research tells us – that youth experience more long-term success when we help them early, keep them in the community whenever possible, and make our treatment family-focused rather than child-focused. This revamped programming allows us to further elevate the way in which we help youth and their families thrive in the community.
New Program Offerings
These recent strategic shifts, designed in response to stakeholders’ needs and the latest industry knowledge, allow us to expand beyond our residential treatment program in Aurora to reach youth early, preserve the family unit, and minimize out-of-home placement. We achieve this through our new programming and the addition of a dedicated Community-Based Services (CBS) office in Englewood, which will open in March and make services more accessible in the Denver Metro area. Additionally, we’ve opened a new CBS office in Logan County, which means our newly expanded Community-Based Services will serve most counties up and down the Front Range. These services are the very core of our mission, in which we keep kids at home and help families prevent emergency situations.
Still, no family is immune from a crisis – substance abuse, dangerous/illicit activities, and suicidal behaviors can happen to any family at any time. When families are dealing with traumatic events such as these, Excelsior is there offering immediate support and refuge. Our Crisis Intervention & Stabilization programs, as well as our Focus and Explore programs, provide the short-term, intensive treatment that these families need to rebuild their lives and recover together. Below is a snapshot of Excelsior’s updated programming that complements our new brand.
- Community-Based Services: Serving the Denver Metro area and Front Range, our Community-Based Services include a variety of therapy options, as well as High Fidelity Wraparound Services, all focused on helping families develop the ability to successfully address challenges at home
- Crisis Intervention and Stabilization Services: Aimed at minimizing out-of-home placement, our Crisis Intervention and Stabilization Services offer intensive outpatient programs in Denver and Aurora, as well as a 21-day stabilization program and academic support.
- Focus – Short-Term Intensive Treatment: Designed for youth struggling with serious psychological and behavioral issues, the Focus program offers intensive treatment in a short-term placement setting. Youth in the Focus program have a brief placement (30-45 days) then return to the community with intensive services and supports in place.
- Explore – Gender-Specific Program: An extension of the Focus program, Explore is a gender-specific, short-term placement designed for girls who have not responded to outpatient treatments. The Explore program serves girls who have often experienced complex trauma and need a stable environment to address extensive psychological, behavioral or educational issues.
*It is important to note that youth in any of Excelsior’s programs can utilize all other components of Excelsior’s integrated Continuum of Care as needed. This results in better continuity of care by helping youth seamlessly transition between programs as their needs change. For example, a young person who completes 30 days in our Focus program may transition to CBS afterward to ensure they have the proper resources and support in place to successfully reintegrate into the community.
Beyond our name change and expanded program offerings, other new brand elements include a bright logo representing the families we support, as well as the strength and upward mobility that Excelsior provides. We hope you will explore our updated website and watch our new brand videos which highlight Excelsior’s remarkable program success. We are incredibly proud to have an 80% success rate, but the real satisfaction comes from hearing the touching, personal stories of the youth and families we’ve supported. You can hear some of these stories in our “Elevating Communities” video and read more here.
In FY15, Excelsior served more than 545 youth and families with over 23,000 hours of trauma-informed care and family-focused services. With our new brand and expanded services we strive to at least DOUBLE this number in FY16. We hope you will support us in this endeavor by learning more about how you can help us elevate our communities.