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What Are Independent Living Programs For Young Adults?

Independent Living Programs For Young Adults

Independent living programs for young adults are designed to help young adults develop the skills they need to lead happy, successful, and independent lives as they shift into adulthood. In these structured yet flexible settings, young adults are able to launch into their next phase of life in a supported way. Independent living for young adults has a different meaning for each individual. For some, independent living for young adults means feeling confident enough to pursue a dream career and own an apartment, for others it means being able to live away from their parents. When looking for independent living programs near you, it is important to factor in the benefits of having some distance from your home environment. Often, space away from home can allow for healing and growth to take place.

Independent living programs for young adults provide housing, on-site mentorship, and life skills programming to help young adults develop lasting and healthy habits. By giving young adults the opportunity to practice living on their own in a structured way, they can become fully prepared to lead an independent and fulfilling life. Some of the independent living skills young adults learn may include:


– Meal planning and preparation


– Time management


– Budgeting


– Health and hygiene


– Financial literacy/management


– Public transportation


– Self-care

The goal of an independent living program is to enable young adults to lead successful and well-balanced lives upon completion. Young adults at independent living programs work with vetted and trusted professionals to develop these skills. They help clients understand what healthy relationships look like, through their authentic and compassionate support.

Independent Living
Independent Living

Each independent living program serves different ages and types of clients. Most include individuals in their late-teens and early-twenties under the umbrella of being a young adult. Single-gender programs are very common, and co-ed options are also available. Independent living programs for young adults are typically located in or around cities that have plenty of educational opportunities for young adults that would like to pursue higher education.


Independent living programs for young adults also provide a variety of services depending on the specific needs of the clientele. Some of these may include:


– Individual therapy


– Group therapy


– Family therapy


– Mentoring/coaching


– Academic support


– Career counseling


– Group recreational activities


Depending on the needs of your young adult, it’s helpful to find an independent living program that serves their unique needs well.

Why choose an independent living program for young adults after residential treatment or wilderness therapy?

For young adults that have successfully completed a wilderness therapy or residential treatment program, independent living programs for young adults are the next ideal step to continue their progress into a thriving young adulthood period. The results of these primary therapeutic programs are profound: improved self-esteem, confidence, and coping skills. Independent living programs for young adults help students integrate their growth with real-world living experience while also supporting the transition between treatment and independence.


Young adults that have attended treatment have made great strides toward a better future. The goal of an independent living program is to make those initial changes into sustainable and lasting ones. By using a strengths-based approach, independent living programs build upon the skills that young adults already have accessible to them to work toward achieving independence in a step-by-step fashion.


An independent living program set young adults up for success with a step-down environment from their previous wilderness or residential stay. This supportive environment recognizes and appreciates the progress made and the transformative effect of these therapeutic programs. Having a common language and a community that understands helps support young adults and their continued trajectory toward independence.


Because their peers will have also previously attended treatment, the young adults at an independent living program feel welcomed and accepted for who they are. This shines through in the supportive milieu – or positive peer culture – that young adults likely experienced in wilderness or residential treatment as well. Because independent living programs for young adults are smaller in size than the previous treatment program, the supportive peer culture is magnified. This is where young adults are putting in the effort to create sustainable, lasting changes and their peers recognize, understand, and are supportive of this.


Along with the goals of successfully launching into young adulthood after treatment, independent living programs for young adults help re-establish healthy family relationships. Treatment thus far has likely helped heal old ones, yet understanding how these family relationships will evolve after treatment is something many young adults and parents are curious about. Independent living programs allow young adults to demonstrate their growth and independence in a real-life setting.


An independent living program ensures that the progress made in treatment continues, with a combination of independence and support from qualified professionals that understand how to help young adults achieve lasting growth and change.