A look into the Sanctuary® model and how it drives growth and healing for Hallmark Youthcare residents in Richmond, VA.
Hallmark Youthcare is renowned for its ability to create exceptional outcomes for youth, especially for young trauma survivors. While this is the result of deliberate, dedicated work among its staff day after day, it also stems from Hallmark’s implementation of a specialized model for trauma-informed care known as the Sanctuary® Model.
The Sanctuary® Model is a model for change that was developed by a group of inpatient clinicians in Philadelphia. These clinicians, with a diverse range of educational and experiential backgrounds, combined their knowledge to create a model for the best environment to facilitate safety, healing, and growth for trauma survivors. Today, the Sanctuary® Model is a highly respected and evidence-based framework for residential mental health care and other treatment settings.
The Sanctuary® Model is particularly unique because it doesn’t only involve care providers. It is a blueprint for turning the entire organization into a trauma-informed community, in addition to educating families and the local community about the impacts of trauma.
As Hallmark’s Sanctuary® Coordinator Shannon Kelley explains, “The Sanctuary® Model believes that all individuals and groups of people can heal and recover from the traumatic experiences they have endured through the creation of trauma-informed and trauma-responsive communities.” Hallmark credits its implementation of the Sanctuary® Model as being a large contributor to the fact that its residents so often flourish not only in its care but when they return home as well.
Trauma-informed care is the core foundation of the Sanctuary® Model, but what does it mean in this context? Within the Sanctuary® Model, trauma-informed care involves education at its core. This includes:
Kelley further explains, “The Sanctuary® Model helps to improve patient care and outcomes by providing the knowledge about trauma as well as tools to help work with trauma survivors. The model provides a ‘tool kit’ that is a set of practices and common rituals that reflect and reinforce our knowledge, values, and language. These tools are used by staff and residents to learn about trauma and about how to build positive connections and plan for their futures.” Through this comprehensive strategy of trauma-informed care, the Sanctuary® Model drives positive change for patients, organizations, and communities in Richmond, VA.
Hallmark Youthcare does not only use the framework of the Sanctuary® Model; it has taken the extra step to become Sanctuary® Certified. In fact, it has been Sanctuary® Certified for over ten years, and is the only youth residential treatment center in the Richmond, Virginia area with this certification.
To become certified, Hallmark Youthcare follows the 28 clinical and operational standards established by the Sanctuary® Institute. These standards ensure that the facility is applying the Sanctuary® Model throughout all aspects of its organization for the benefit of residents and their families and communities.
The thorough certification process involves an on-site review to ensure Hallmark is deploying evidence-based practices that reflect and reinforce its knowledge, values, and language. Every three years, it goes through this process again for recertification and continuous improvement.
Hallmark Youthcare vigilantly monitors resident outcomes through a variety of assessment tools, discharge surveys, supervision, and observations from its Core Team of Sanctuary® leaders. It is proud to have an excellent record of positive outcomes. As Kelley reports, “We have been successful each recertification period with outstanding remarks and feedback from the Sanctuary® Institute. We were also recent winners of the Resiliency Award in 2021 for our continued efforts and positive outcomes.”
Even still, Hallmark is on a continued mission to make improvements to its outcomes and its implementation of the Sanctuary® model. The organization’s personnel attend the annual Sanctuary® conference and supplementary training throughout the year.
Hallmark Youthcare is proud to maintain an ongoing dialog about its approach and trauma-informed care with the mental health industry and the community at large in Richmond, VA. To learn more, contact Hallmark Youthcare today.
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