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Posted: Nov 4, 2004, 19:58

New Perspectives


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Of Your Own Accord
New York, New York
Marilyn Siegal, LCSW, Co-Founder
Gabriel Rivera, Co-Founder

Founded by the former owners of the Ranch House, Inc., Marilyn Siegal and Gabriel Rivera, Sua Sponte (translated as: Of Your Own Accord), is located in the Park Slope area of Brooklyn, NY. Sua Sponte targets male students ages 17.6 to 21 transitioning from either a therapeutic program or their home environment and require six months to one year of support and guidance.

These students typically exhibit an average to above average cognitive ability and need further assistance in academics, emotional growth and/or recovery issues. All applicants must illustrate a willingness and motivation to live in a “safe and structured independent living program.” Mentors and clinical social workers are available to help the adolescents move toward their future career and life goals. They help them increase their self confidence and strengthen organization and communication skills. All students are required to participate in supervised community service activities.

Students who need to finish high school have several options including alternative high school programs, local community colleges or obtaining their GED. Sua Sponte staff provides supervision and guidance to those students who want to attend a community college or a public or private sector four-year university. With a wide variety of vocational training and college programs available in New York City, these adolescents may attend several different types of educational and vocational training programs including The Art Institute for fashion or culinary arts, The Institute of Culinary Education, automotive repair, construction, etc.

Sua Sponte requires weekly individual and group psychotherapy sessions with staff, and counsels students in successfully transitioning into adulthood. Those in recovery must have a minimum of six months of sobriety and have successfully completed a short-term intervention prior to enrollment. All recovery students are required to attend AA/NA meetings, recovery groups, and have the option of individual counseling.


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