17-year-old Emilee was experiencing extreme anxiety and was habitually truant. Her mother Robyn was dealing with issues of her own and struggled to support Emilee in making education and school attendance a priority. Eventually, when Emilee was at risk of being placed out of the home environment, the family willingly entered Pressley Ridge’s Safe At Home program. Funded by the state of West Virginia, Safe At Home aims to reduce out-of-home placements and keep youth in their home by providing families with temporary individualized wraparound services.

Pressley Ridge Wraparound Facilitator Jocelyn Blackwell worked with Emilee and Robyn to help them identify their goals. Emilee wanted to improve in school, gain control over her anxiety, increase her self-confidence and build a stronger relationship with her mother. Robyn wanted help with developing the skills needed to best support Emilee so she could watch her daughter excel and have a chance at a bright future.

A Wraparound Plan was developed to help Emilee focus on improving academically. Jocelyn and the wraparound team helped her learn interventions such as math equations, finger tapping, and staring at a fan to cope with and manage her anxiety symptoms. The team built and maintained a strong, trusting relationship with Robyn and worked with her to develop structure, oversight and support for Emilee. Robyn was also taught the skills that Emilee was learning in an effort to help them overcome the identified challenges together and to become a stronger family.

Emilee and Robyn were determined to succeed, and with the team’s help, they made incredible strides.

Upon discharge from the Safe At Home program after nine months, Jocelyn and the Wraparound team describe Emilee as “a different young lady” compared to when she entered the program. She is confident, in control of her emotions, thriving academically, and looking forward to a bright future. Robyn has also developed confidence. She is proud of the positive changes her daughter has made and pleased to have been able to support her in reaching her highest potential.

Emilee had enough credits to graduate high school early and plans to attend West Virginia University with a concentration in social work.