The Waccamaw Way is a model of care based in the mission, vision, and values of Boys and Girls Homes of North Carolina.
The key aims of The Waccamaw Way are:
- Providing a safe environment for trying new things, learning "cause and effect" thinking, and practicing prosocial skills.
- Providing opportunities for clients to align their values with their actions and create pathways for value-driven decision-making.
- Applying Growth Mindset principles to functional skill-building and the promotion of behavioral change.
- Assisting clients in discovering and leveraging their strengths, talents, skills, abilities, and passions to promote a muscle memory for success.
- Counteracting the negative impacts of sensory and social deprivation.
- Reducing reactivity to stress and anxiety.
- Encouraging the development of skills related to executive functioning.
All components of The Waccamaw Way focus on Neuroplasticity (driven by experiences) activities for clients. The component include, but not limited to:
- Individual and Group Therapy
- A Daily Schedule that facilitates experiences, finding "Meaning" in every moment
- Continuity between the milieu, therapy, recreation and education
- Sensory Zones that promote central nervous system calming, positive responses to external regulation and internalization of coping strategies
- Life Skill groups and Flexible Thinking activities that address social, self-regulation, safety, sense of belonging, communication and new ways to think
- Peer Group Mentoring
- Individualized Comprehensive Treatment Plans that are strengths-based
- Growth-Mindset Principles
The Model follows the client throughout the entire continuum of care from admissions to discharge and aftercare.
The Waccamaw Way utilizes the theory of Systems Approach, thus integrating into every aspect of the Agency, but not limited to, the organizational structure, organizational culture, polices and procedures, clinical, medial, programming, milieu management, staff training and professional development.
The Phase System
The Waccamaw Way features five (5) strategic phases to facilitate a nurturing therapeutic experience for every client. Building upon the uniqueness of the children and youth, Program Phases are designed to be completed as new therapeutic and executive functioning skills are developed as opposed to length of stay. As residential clients enter Program Phases 3 - 5, they will have the opportunity to become Peer Mentors, Peer Group Facilitators and Cottage Ambassadors.
The Phase System is a major part of the treatment model that guides a client from admission to discharge and allows the client to access incentives, awards and privileges as he/she make forward progress in all aspects of his/her treatment plan. Upon admission, all clients start on Phase One and my level up to Phase Five as personal success and self-advocacy dictates.
The Phases system consists of the following:
Trauma Informed Care
The Trauma Informed Care Project (traumainformedcareproject.org) defines Trauma Informed Care as "an organizational structure and treatment framework that involves understanding, recognizing, and responding to the effects of all types of trauma. Trauma Informed Care also emphasizes physical, psychological, and emotional safety for both consumers and providers, and helps survivors rebuild a sense of control and empowerment.