Residential Services provides therapeutic care to abused and neglected children in the Department of Family and Child Services, as well as troubled youth in the custody of the Department of Juvenile Justice. The trauma experienced by these children causes severe emotional and behavioral issues that make safe living in home settings unattainable until intensive therapeutic services are provided. Many have experienced numerous failed foster home placements and psychiatric hospitalization because of the likelihood of harm to themselves and others. Many have been labeled as juvenile delinquents and are considered unworkable therapeutically. However, at Murphy-Harpst we do not view these children as hopeless or worthless; we provide them with a structured environment where they can experience safety, security, and stability, often for the first time.
All residents have their own bedroom (often the first in their life), and the majority have a private bathroom as well. Our children live in “cottages” with other children of their sex and age range, and have communal spaces where they learn what it is like to live in a functional family setting. We create situations of normalcy that the kids would experience living in community – birthday parties, movie nights, homework hour, and bedtime. Families that have the ability to visit our residents are welcome, and Murphy-Harpst does not place limits on visits that caseworkers deem appropriate.
Murphy-Harpst has a 1:4 Staff: Child ratio, which exceeds the state mandated minimum of 1:5.
Are you a caseworker interested in making a residential referral?
Jason Murphy, Admissions Manager
Residents at Murphy-Harpst attend the top-ranked York Academy on campus. The majority of our children come to us several grade levels behind. School officials work with each child’s therapist to develop and appropriate individualized education plan to remediate their knowledge and prepare them to attend school in the community. Housed in one of our beautiful historic structures, York Academy provides a unique learning setting for our children to get back on track. Once students have reached grade level and are ready, they are able to attend school in the local community.
Murphy-Harpst is home to a fully operational clinic where our residents and community clients may receive medical care and assessment. On-campus med techs and clinical assistance provide medication management for each of our residents, checking each individual’s medications daily. Nutrition is vital to providing a healthy and stable environment for our children, and we employ a registered dietician to ensure every need is being met. Nursing services also provides transportation for all specialist appointments our residents require, such as dentists, dermatologists, and more.
Transitional Living Program:
The Transitional Living Program is a campus-based program for adolescent ages 16 to 21 who are preparing for independent living. Transitional Living affords the youth an opportunity to practice independent living skills in a variety of settings with decreasing levels of supervision. The Transitional Living Program is the logical next step for adolescents who need further supportive services and independent skills and training, yet have outgrown group homes or residential treatment programs, or whose family situation is not safe.
Each youth admitted to the program has demonstrated an interest and ability in improving life skills towards a goal of becoming a stable and productive member of the local community. Youth living in the Transitional Living Program are placed on an educational or vocational track with the supervision of a therapist. These youth are able to get jobs in the community, and many attend high school or college off campus. While still enjoying the support and services Murphy-Harpst provides, they are learning life skills such as cooking, budgeting, and time management.
Are you a caseworker interested in learning more about placements in our Transitional Living Program?
Jason Murphy, Admissions Manager
Unfortunately, we are not set up to take private insurance or parental custody clients at this time. All of our residential admissions must come through a caseworker for the Department of Family and Children’s Services or the Department of Juvenile Justice.
If you are searching for a residential placement for your child or a child in your custody, we recommend contacting your local LIPT (Local Interagency Planning Team) Meeting. The purpose of LIPT is to improve and facilitate the coordination of services for children living with severe behavioral health needs or addictive diseases in their local community. As a team, they will assist you in making certain the child in your care is receiving all the available services offered in your community. https://gacoeonline.gsu.edu/lipt/