Day One is committed to partnering with area schools by offering prevention and treatment services. Our most popular prevention program is the Natural Helpers of Maine, which was started in 1985. We also collaborate with a number of Cumberland and York County schools by providing an on-site counselor to help students with substance use and mental health concerns.
Natural Helpers of Maine
National research has demonstrated that peer programs are among the most effective prevention strategies and that the best way to assist teens in developing positive behaviors is to ask other teens to provide that assistance. Simply put, teens will often talk to teens before they talk to adults. The Natural Helpers of Maine program is rooted in the natural network of ‘teens helping teens’ that exists in every school.
At the beginning of the school year, students in each participating school nominate peers to be Natural Helpers, who receive training throughout the year on communication skills, identifying serious concerns such as substance abuse, bullying and suicide risk. They provide support to fellow students and ensure that teens with “red flag” concerns get assistance from a professional adult.
Day One counselors offer support to students in a number of schools throughout southern Maine. If there is not a counselor based in your school, you can meet with one at one of our offices.
Our counselors provide substance use and mental health treatment at high schools and middle schools throughout southern Maine, utilizing the most up to date and research-backed approaches. During the 2017-2018 school year, Day One offers services at the following schools: Biddeford High School, Biddeford Middle School, The Bridge School (Sanford), Casco Bay High School (Portland), Deering High School, Freeport High School, King Middle School, Old Orchard Beach High School, Portland High School, Sanford High School, Sanford Junior High School, South Portland High School, Thornton Academy and Windham High School.
Students greatly benefit from hearing from someone their own age about his/her personal struggles with alcohol, drug use, and mental health needs. Clients from Day One treatment programs regularly share their experience and their recovering lifestyle at schools across Maine.