Rose Hill is a member of ARTA (American Residential Treatment Association), which is comprised of 30 facilities across the United States serving adults with mental illness. While all the organizations are different, some are rural, some are urban, some are small while others are quite large, they all have one thing in common, they are home for individuals in treatment. Which is why it’s called residential. Residents can build self-esteem and learn new social skills, often by contributing in some way to the residential community or to the greater community outside of the treatment facility.
Why is Community So Important?
Community provides many benefits such as social support, a sense of belonging, and a purpose filled day. These are all protective factors crucial for individuals with mental illness. Particularly social support-this social connectedness is essential for humans as we are social beings. Our ancestors (hunters-gatherers) would not have survived had it not been for the support of others in their community and this need for community is still evident today. A sense of community is when you are accepted for your true self with no need to conform to ‘fit in’. This feeling of acceptance increases self-confidence and the sense of belonging, while decreasing feelings of loneliness and isolation. When community also involves common goals and activities, people develop a sense of purpose and feelings of being part of something bigger than themselves.
Why is Isolation So Detrimental?
A study of 20,000 people revealed that almost 50% of respondents sometimes or always felt lonely. Chronic loneliness has a negative impact on both physical and mental health. In fact, brain scans show that the same area of the brain is activated when someone is feeling isolated as when they are in pain. As well, these feelings can exacerbate one another resulting in a self-perpetuation cycle.
Rose Hill’s Community
People come to Rose Hill from across the country to work on psychiatric issues. Medication management, group and individual therapies, along with special programming to treat autism, personality disorders, and substance use disorders may be expected in a therapeutic program. You will find all of those while living at Rose Hill. What may come as a surprise is the sense of community that accompanies these more clinical aspects. One of the most appreciated features of Rose Hill’s program is the community itself.
People who develop a mental illness during their formative years often lose their social connections. Classmates go off to college, siblings get married, friends lose touch, often resulting in isolation and loneliness. Rose Hill helps people learn how to develop new and fulfilling social connections. The therapeutic work teams specifically help people develop self-esteem, self-confidence and provide feelings of belonging and accomplishment. Being part of a group (staff and residents) can be life-changing for our residents. One of our resident graduates put it best by saying : “ At Rose Hill we work as part of a team, share assignments, and then assume increasing responsibility for ourselves and others. This has helped me build my social skills and acquire a greater sense of self-value, esteem and confidence. Without a doubt, Rose Hill has changed my life beyond description!”