Less Restrictive Settings

Regular Family Foster Care

Regular Family Foster Care is continuous 24-hour care and supportive services provided to a youth in a DJS-approved family home. Foster care is used for low risk youth who have difficulties being managed in their own homes or have home environments that need to be stabilized before the youth returns.

Treatment Foster Care

Treatment Foster Care is continuous 24-hour care and intensive support services in a family setting for youth with serious emotional, behavioral, medical and/or psychological conditions. Despite their significant needs, the youth in treatment foster care do not display behaviors that require removal from the community. Youth in DJS-approved foster care programs are placed in those programs for treatment purposes only and cannot be adopted by their foster parents.

General Group Home

General Group Home is a residential program licensed by DJS, the Department of Human Resources or the Department of Mental Health and Hygiene to provide out-of-home care for 4 or more youth who are moderate-to-high risk and need more structure and supervision than their family or foster parent can provide. General group homes provide a formal program of basic care, social work and health care services.

Substance Addition Treatment

The William Donald Schaefer​ House (WDSH) is the only DJS-operated group home. WDSH provides a substance addiction treatment program for male youth ages 14 to 18.

Therapeutic Group Home

A Therapeutic Group Home is a residential program for youth that is licensed by the Mental Health Administration and must be a non-profit organization. A therapeutic group home provides access to a range of diagnostic and therapeutic mental health services to youth who are moderate-to-high risk and are emotionally or developmentally disabled.

Intermediate Care Facilities for Addictions

Intermediate Care Facilities for Addictions are the most intensive level for residential substance abuse services providing drug and alcohol abuse assessment, treatment, and/or education for moderate-to-high risk youth. These treatment programs provide intensive services and can handle “dually diagnosed” youth who have treatment needs beyond their substance addiction. Typically, youth in Intermediate Care Facilities for Addictions have both an assessed substance abuse problem and a diagnosed psychiatric problem. These treatment programs are intended to stabilize the youth, initiate drug treatment and/or counseling services and develop recommendations for services upon discharge.

Residential Treatment Centers

Residential Treatment Centers provide the highest level of care for moderate-to-high risk youth with a psychiatric diagnosis for a serious emotional disturbance. A residential treatment center is required to have psychiatrists, psychologists and psychiatric nurses on staff to lead treatment. These treatment programs provide close, 24 hour supervision, group and individual counseling, 24-hour crisis intervention, restraint capability, contained educational programs and medication management. The goals of a residential treatment center are to stabilize the youth’s emotional condition and provide services that help the youth manage their mental health issues.