Child Services

Children and adolescents are often at odds with themselves and their families, their teachers, and friends as they try to figure out who they are. When this begins to interfere with their home life, social life, and schoolwork, the professionals at Ozark Guidance offer programs that can help children and their families face these challenges, work on solutions and get back to feeling good about themselves.

Early Childhood Program

EARLY INTERVENTION IS KEY

Ozark Guidance believes that the strength of our communities lies in the strength of our families. The Early Childhood Program was developed to provide a source of early intervention for families with children 3-5 years of age who need therapeutic help. We offer early intervention/prevention, outpatient, community-based, and day treatment services.

OUTPATIENT/COMMUNITY-BASED SERVICES

The Outpatient Program provides therapy services in an office setting at Ozark Guidance, which can include qualified behavioral health professional support in the home and/or child’s school setting.

The Community-Based Program offers therapeutic services in your home, preschools, or other community sources. We have partnered with Children’s House, Public Pre-Kindergarten programs, and area Head Start Programs to facilitate access to our services.

THE GUIDANCE WE GIVE

The Early Childhood Program believes in taking a holistic approach to early intervention, prevention, and treatment. This approach is inclusive of parents working with a board-certified child & adolescent, advanced practice registered nurse, and qualified behavioral health professionals.

SPECIALIZED TREATMENT

The staff of the Early Childhood Program is highly trained in evidence-based practices in the areas of family therapy, childhood development, and behavior management in order to bring about positive change in the home and school settings. Additional speech, occupational, and physical therapies are offered when necessary.

A strong focus of therapy at the Early Childhood Program is on Play Therapy. Play is the child’s natural way of communicating just as talking is to adults.

HOW DOES PLAY THERAPY WORK?

Special toys help the children say things that they may have difficulty saying with words. Trained play therapists understand what is being communicated through play. The child begins to feel better because the feelings have been released.

DOES MY CHILD NEED PLAY THERAPY?

Most children experience difficulty coping at some time and exhibit behaviors which concern parents and teachers.

If you, your child’s teacher, or physician is concerned about behavior or difficulty adjusting contact the Early Childhood Program.

PROJECT PLAY-POSITIVE LEARNING FOR ARKANSAS’ YOUNGEST

Project PLAY matches early childhood mental health consultants with early care education providers throughout the state of Arkansas. Consultants will work with the child care center directors and staff to meet the challenges they face each day. This FREE service offers innovative techniques proven to positively impact the social and emotional development of Arkansas’ preschool children.

Project Play

For more information visit familymedicine.uams.edu/projectplay

Therapeutic Foster Care

Children and youth from all walks of life may need Therapeutic Foster Care home placements for a variety of reasons, including:

  • Severe emotional and/or behavioral problems
  • Multiple failed foster home placements
  • Bridging placements between hospitalization or residential treatment and a family home, or regular foster home placement
  • Emotional or mental disabilities.

The Therapeutic Foster Care program at Ozark Guidance provides children and youth with structured, consistent treatment in a clinic setting and in the home environment of specially trained, therapeutic foster parents.

Therapeutic Foster Parents are dedicated adults who are genuinely concerned about the well being of children and families. They are acutely aware of the crises, stresses and social problems that result in the abuse and neglect of children, or in the adolescent behaviors of truancy, running away, or unruliness. They are a vital part of an Ozark Guidance therapeutic treatment team.

About Therapeutic Foster Parenting

Therapeutic Foster Care Children May Have:

Emotional Considerations:  Separation from one’s home, family, and friends is traumatic.  Therapeutic Foster Parents can help ease the hurt and pain that separation can cause.

Behavioral Considerations:  Reactions to separation vary.  Some children withdraw, others act out at home, school, or in the community.  Therapeutic Foster Parents help them cope with the hurt, anger, and grief.

Special Needs Considerations:  Some children and youth bring some special needs with them into foster care placements–specific medical, emotional, or physical needs, pregnancy, or other brothers and sisters needing a sibling group placement.  To help Therapeutic Foster Parents cope, they will receive special training and 24-hour support services from the rest of the treatment team.

Therapeutic Foster Parents are trained to understand these issues, and choose to become treatment families for these children in need.  They provide specialized treatment and focused care, becoming a vital part of an Ozark Guidance therapeutic treatment team.

THE BASIC REQUIREMENTS FOR BECOMING A FOSTER PARENT GENERALLY INCLUDE THAT YOU:

  • Are at least 21 years of age, and if married, you have been married for at least 2 years
  • Are in good physical and emotional health
  • Meet the state and local requirements for housing safety, space, and equipment
  • Have specialized skills, positive attitude, and stamina to effectively deal with the many behaviors and feelings displayed by children
  • Have a non-punitive attitude and can demonstrate some level of acceptance toward the parents of the children
  • Can work cooperatively with the treatment team of professionals, the state agency, and the courts
  • Are accepting of the temporary nature of foster care and can help a child transition back to his family or move on to a permanent or adoptive placement

SOME FACTS TO CONSIDER:

  • Therapeutic Foster Parenting is a commitment to help a child and family through a specifically difficult period by providing consideration, understanding, and therapeutic guidance to the child
  • Foster parents are matched with an appropriate child for them and for meeting the specific needs of the child
  • Foster parents do receive financial support–a monthly reimbursement to cover room, board, and clothing expenses, plus cover the specific needs of the child, plus coverage for medical and dental expenses

If you are interested in exploring Therapeutic Foster Parenting please contact Ozark Guidance

Nicole Linn
LMSW, Outreach Coordinator/Program Therapist
479-725-5118

School-Based Services

Ozark Guidance was the first in Northwest Arkansas to provide mental health counseling to children inside the school system. School-Based Services are designed to help students in kindergarten through high school who are faced with emotional and/or behavioral problems that are keeping them from doing well in class.

Through individual, group and family therapy, support services, and behavioral assistance, the School-Based counselors help children and families reduce the barriers to learning and improve the emotional and behavioral development of the child. By placing counselors in the schools, Ozark Guidance is able to serve children in a familiar place and with less interruption to their school day. This also helps reduce the costs and travel time by family members.

Common problems addressed in school-based sessions include:

  • Difficulty adjusting to a stressful event such as divorce or loss of a loved one
  • Behavioral problems such as oppositional defiant disorder
  • Mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, and attention deficit disorder

Ozark Guidance’s School-Based program was cited as the “model” for such programs by the Arkansas Department of Education.

Kids Helping Kids

Kids Helping Kids is a peer education program designed by Ozark Guidance to encourage youth to support each other. The program focuses on developing young leaders by teaching tools kids can use to support others. The program emphasizes decreasing bullying and anti-social behaviors while increasing peers helping one another when they are in trouble, encouraging good decision making, and pro-social activities. The five primary values of Kids Helping Kids are: stand up for others, help others if they are hurt, get help from adults, encourage good behaviors in others, and be a friend.

Schools identify students that they believe embody the Kids Helping Kids method and those that would benefit from the skills taught in Kids Helping Kids. Identified students participate in interactive training with Ozark Guidance staff members, reviewing the five values of the program and actively identifying ways they can support their peers. Students trained in Kids Helping Kids engage in peer leadership creating their own demonstrations of the five values to share with their classrooms or entire schools, in order to influence positive development of pro-social skills in their peers. Each child that participates in the Kids Helping Kids receives a t-shirt as recognition of their accomplishment and ongoing efforts to lead by example.

For more information about Kids Helping Kids contact

Jennifer Coldiron, LCSW
School-Based Liaison Manager
479.695.1240 
school.outreach@ozarkguidance.org

C.R.E.A.T.E. Change

C.R.E.A.T.E. Change is a junior high and high school peer leadership program that was designed with local students to prepare them to support one another and advocate for inclusive schools and communities. An initial training series engages participants with skills and tools applicable to a range of issues including mental health, bullying, dating violence, and unconscious bias. Through ongoing support and access to nationally recognized advocacy materials, students plan and lead initiatives to create change that is important to them.

What? Ozark Guidance professionals facilitate an interactive training that engages (usually 20-25) students in learning C.R.E.A.T.E. Change skills, tools, and interventions with real life scenarios. Participants may then engage in leadership activities to teach their classmates and advocate for positive student-led initiatives. As a reminder of their ongoing role to support others and lead, participants receive a t-shirt (see T-Shirt Design Contest details.)

Some examples of student-led initaives to create change include:

  • Students may co-facilitate activities in classes or small groups to spread C.R.E.A.T.E Change skills
  • Students might organize a panel discussion to share stories with C.R.E.A.T.E. Change messages
  • Students may create an awareness campaign using nationally recognized advocacy materials, e.g. Booster Buddy, a free app to help young people improve their mental health, or Pacer Center’s Teens Against Bullying resources, or That’sNotCool.com materials to decrease digital dating violence, or MTV’s Look Different website to open people’s eyes to hidden (unconscious) bias
  • Students develop a nomination process and manage ‘Change Creator’ awards to routinely recognize and honor peers who are supporting others and creating change for a positive school environment
  • If time is limited, then this option can be omitted and students who participate in the core presentation are encouraged to spread C.R.E.A.T.E. Change skills through role modeling

Who? Our program is flexible. Student participants may be an established leadership club or group, e.g. student council. Or this program may be best for students who might benefit from additional supports, e.g. student in an alternative learning environment. Or the student body and/or school personnel may strategically nominate and select 20-25 students from various junior high or high school classes to build bridges across differences. When? Student participation varies depending on what is best for a school. A core presentation is at minimum two hours or may be broken into briefer meetings, for example, five meetings to cover each of the C.R.E.A.T.E. Change concepts, one at a time. On-going guidance is available to support subsequent student-led initiatives.

Why? By offering skills, tools and interventions, Ozark Guidance is empowering students across Northwest Arkansas to creatively prevent or diminish negative outcomes including low academic performance, poor mental health, even suicide. As students gain skills, tools and interventions they make themselves, one another, our schools and our communities safer and stronger.

How? Schools simply sign up, at no cost. Students receive their t-shirts for free. We are currently seeking funding from community donors to sustain the program over time.

Contact: Jennifer Coldiron, L.C.S.W.
School Based Liaison Manager, 479-695-1240
 school.outreach@ozarkguidance.org

Substance Abuse and Recovery Services

Ozark Guidance Recovery Services offers assessments, treatment, and psycho-educational programs for individuals with substance abuse, anger, and domestic violence issues.  All programs are high quality, cost-effective, and affordable.

Therapeutic Day Treatment

Sometimes children experience the burdens of depression, problems at home, or some additional trauma that lead to problems in school. Children in this situation need a new place to grow, learn, and succeed.

Ozark Guidance provides a school program that gives children this opportunity. Therapeutic Day Treatment, or TDT, is a comprehensive integration of academic and clinical programs that serve children and adolescents age 5-18. The goal of TDT is to stabilize a child’s behavior in a structured behavioral management environment so that when appropriate, he or she can remain with their family and return to school better able to succeed academically and emotionally.

Outpatient Treatment

Ozark Guidance offers outpatient clinical services designed to help children who are faced with emotional and/or behavioral problems.

Through individual, group and family therapy, support services, and behavioral assistance, the counselors help children and families improve the emotional and behavioral development of the child.

Common problems addressed include:

  • Difficulty adjusting to a stressful event such as divorce or loss of a loved one
  • Behavioral problems such as oppositional defiant disorder
  • Mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, and attention deficit disorder

Make An Appointment

Normal administrative business hours are Monday – Friday 8am-5pm.

If this is a life-threatening emergency, call 911.

To report child abuse, call 1.800.482.5964. To report elder abuse, call 1.800.332.4443.

If this is not a life-threatening situation, please call 1.800.234.7052 anytime.

Make An Appointment

Normal administrative business hours are Monday – Friday 8am-5pm.

If this is a life-threatening emergency, call 911.

To report child abuse, call 1.800.482.5964. To report elder abuse, call 1.800.332.4443.

If this is not a life-threatening situation, please call 1.800.234.7052 anytime.

Our Locations

Main Campus

2400 S 48th Street
Springdale, AR 72762

479.750.2020

Rogers/Bentonville Children's Services

2003 SE Walton Blvd
Bentonville, AR 72712

479.725.6000

Bentonville - Miriam Enfield Center

2508 SE 20th Street
Bentonville, AR 72712

479.273.9088

Fayetteville

60 West Sunbridge
Fayetteville, AR 72703

479.695.1240

Berryville

208 Hwy 62 West
Berryville, AR 72616

870.423.2758

Mountain Home

899 Burnett Dr
Mountain Home, AR 72653

870.232.4385

Siloam Springs

710 Holly Street
Siloam Springs, AR 72761

479.524.8618

Huntsville

1104 N. College Street
Huntsville, AR 72740

479.738.2878

Harrison

117 Saw Grass Point
Harrison, AR  72601 

870.204.7488