During the six-month pre-release period, each participant receives approximately six hours per week of individual Behavioral Health & Wellness interventions, three 2-hour sessions per week of Community & Life Skills (group), and at least one individual session per week for Education & Employment (job readiness).
Upon release, a participant is asked to begin Academy services the day after leaving prison. The first two days at the Academy headquarters consist of half-day programming, which include the Life Skills, Role Induction, Cultural Ecogram and CALM interventions, updating the bio-psycho-social assessment, receiving other community-oriented transitional support services and aid – including moving, unpacking, purchasing clothing and food, obtaining proof of identity documents, and receiving other vital life skills.
In the first six weeks post-release, the participant enters an intensive period of full-day programming at the Academy. During this phase, participants receive an average of 22 hours per week of multiple Community & Life Skills and Behavioral Health & Wellness interventions that are braided together as part of the Academy’s Comprehensive Behavioral Health Manual – including Support 4 Families, ACT and, if necessary, substance use disorder (SUD) treatment. (Based on preliminary data, it is expected that more than 80 percent of Academy participants will require some SUD treatment. Participants needing SUD have two tracks – a non 12-step program track that includes the ACT intervention, Matrix model, and peer led support groups – and a 12-step program that adds the Match model to programming and replaces the peer-led support groups with 12-step support groups.) In addition, the six-week intensive programming phase includes an average of 20 hours per week of education and job readiness.
Participants then settle into a post-release schedule, depending on individual needs, for the remainder of the first year post-release. Participants not enrolled in SUD treatment (or for those whose SUD treatment has been stepped down to outpatient), are matched to a 40-hour per week job contract through the Academy Employment Agency or some other occupationally-balanced activity. Those participants requiring continued and/or increased levels of SUD treatment have customized work and intervention schedules. In addition, each participant is paired with a volunteer partnership team. These teams help individuals with reconnecting with the larger community through spiritual, volunteer and recreational activities, and creating new and constructive life skills.
After eighteen months, a graduation ceremony will commemorate the successful completion of the program by participants in each class. Participants continue with the Academy as alumni.