Lake Ozark, MO 65049
- Adolescents, male or female,
between 10 and 18 years of age.
- Adolescents who present with,
and who would benefit from a program that focuses on issues of
emotion, attachment and trauma and other related diagnoses with
treatment interventions such as coaching relationships, transferable
attachment, and experiential successes.
- Adolescents whose primary
diagnosis will indicate mild to
severe psychiatric difficulty which has persisted for a period
of 1 year or longer, has not shown significant response to less
intensive therapeutic intervention and is not manageable in a
less restrictive setting.
- Adolescents who are not physically
handicapped in such a manner as
to significantly restrict the normal physical activity which is
a part of
the CALO program.
- Adolescents who would not
benefit from short term treatment at
- Adolescents whose medical
conditions do not require ongoing medical supervision
CALO does not
- Adolescents with a current
confirmed and/or valid diagnosis
of Conduct Disorder or who would
fit the profile of Conduct Disorder and does not have a history
of trauma or attachment issues.
- Adolescents whose primary
is drug and alcohol use/abuse.
- Adolescents who are actively
- Adolescents who are actively
- Adolescents with a confirmed
diagnosis of Anti-Social
Personality Disorder or who
would fit the profile of Anti-Social Personality Disorder.
- Adolescents who are sex
offenders or at high risk in this regard.
- Adolescents who have a strong
history of violence against
people or animals (as determined during the Admissions Assessment
- Students with a confirmed/
valid IQ below 80.
- Adolescents whose reality
is so impaired as to render them unable to orient to place, time,
person, or context.
Brief Description of Treatment
CALO is one of a few specialized
residential treatment centers which have accumulated experience
in the advanced methodology of remedial work with international
adoptees who, at any given time, constitute the majority of CALO
residents. CALO accepts adolescents - girls and boys - from 10
to 18 years old.
CALO focuses on treatment of
children struggling with the aftermath of complex childhood trauma.
It is a relational, attachment-centered program. Their treatment
is based on the notion that development mediated by trauma results
in relational, emotional, and physiological dysregulation of the
affected child. The treatment goal is to teach a struggling adolescent
how to build and maintain healthy age-appropriate and socially
acceptable relationships with parents, peers, and "significant
others" in the process of daily living and schooling.
CALO leadership and staff trainers
have impressive credentials and base their innovative and intensive
work on the modern understanding of the origins and consequences
of repetitive trauma in children. The staff at CALO understands
that the most effective and lasting emotional and behavioral change
comes from a child's rewarding, consistent, and predictable relationships
with adults and peers, from relations that are safe, nurturing,
and empathetic. The ability to form a healthy relationship which
can serve as the basis for other aspects of child's development
is the goal of treatment at CALO.
Due to the specific emotional
needs of these adolescents, punitive interventions, as well as
forms of traditional behavior modification systems, are not implemented.
In order to facilitate and internalize the change in a child,
CALO staff puts all its efforts into creating what they call a
"relationship milieu." This notion is rooted in the
modern concept of social connectedness as the moving force and
the goal of human behavior. Any disruption of this process at
the early stages of a child's development is traumatic and bears
lasting negative consequences which may disrupt normal socialization,
education and overall functioning of a person. Thus the relationship
is the main change agent: damage caused within a relationship
must be healed in a relationship. In keeping with that general
principle, CALO staff creates and utilizes a positive peer culture
as modifying personal behavior factor. Via an adult's lead shared
activities, group communications and non-verbal experiences (touch,
gestures, eye contact, etc.) the all-important meaningful positive
social experiences are accumulated by the residents, which make
it possible to influence their behavior without any punitive measures.
Besides the many hours a student lives and functions in the "relationship
milieu," they also participate in weekly individual, family,
group, recreational, and canine therapy. These therapies are all
designed to give the student skills, tools, insight, and awareness
of trust and normalcy in relationships, which they practice in the
milieu and then will transfer to their home life. The therapeutic
The resident's motivation and
compliance come from the implementation of physical safety, emotional
regulation, and consistency. If a student becomes a safety risk
to himself/herself or others then more "closeness" will
be provided by the staff, as the staff to student ratio (1:3)
allows for consistency of relationships and opportunities for
connection. CALO implements socially inclusive "Time-Ins"
versus isolative "Time-Outs." Closeness is a major intervention
for developing the trust that authority figures are safe and reliable
and that life doesn't have to be dictated by the fear of rejection
and abandonment. This relationship with staff begins to spill
over into relations with parents/guardians when they participate
in weekly family therapy, family visits every 4-6 weeks, and get
involved in parent retreats and seminars. Parents work in conjunction
with the primary resident therapist to receive their own training
on attachment, trauma, and the resolution of their own issues
so they can be present and accepting of their own child.
A significant part of CALO's therapeutic approach
is the canine program, during which the students take care of their
assigned dog and learn to take their first steps in placing care
and trust into somebody safe and non-judgmental, learning empathy
without fear of being rejected.
CALO selects its residents carefully
among those adolescents who would benefit from a program that
focuses on issues of emotion regulation, attachment, and trauma
and who could be receptive to treatment interventions described
above. CALO works with adolescents who are a challenge for traditional
therapeutic approaches, whose problems have persisted for a long
time, who have not shown significant response to a less intensive
therapeutic intervention, and who are not manageable in a less
Over half of CALO residents have IEPs with academic
goals and appropriate academic interventions with planned empirically-proven
(e.g. multi-sensory approach in reading) and technologically advanced
methods of academic remediation.
Upon consistent evidence of emotional
and behavioral change, parents, students, and therapists establish
a plan for transition from the residential program and for the
aftercare. The transition includes expectations for emotional
and behavioral functioning, household and peer relation boundaries,
scholastic and vocational requirements, and continued personal
development (outpatient therapy, counseling, therapy groups, etc.)
for the former resident. After the student's return to the family,
therapists may perform in-home visits and meet with the child's
school counselor, outpatient therapist, teachers, etc., striving
to create accountability, sensitivity, and empowerment of the
student within those environments and relationships.