Offering hope for young men struggling with behavioral, mental and emotional health.
Rawhide’s community-based youth counseling provides a safe space for young men and women to talk about how they feel without fear of judgment.
Your donations help transform young lives.
Get involved in the life-changing work that happens every day at Rawhide.
Since 1965, our mission has been one of belief.
If you or a youth you care about will be enrolling in Rawhide’s Residential Care Program, you likely have questions. Here you’ll find answers to the most frequently asked questions.
Don’t see your question? Contact us at any time.
Our youth are typically placed by the county or state, which is responsible for the cost of youth placements. If a youth is privately placed, Rawhide will arrange any remaining costs with the family.
Insurance companies do not cover this level of care. To request an out-of-home referral to Rawhide, reach out to your local Department of Health and Human Services.
Youth are assessed individually through our intake process. Rawhide staff gathers information about the youth via intake forms and phone calls with the referring agency, youth and family/guardian of the youth to ensure all needs can be met.
Rawhide offers various forms of therapy at our counseling centers in Appleton, Green Bay, Milwaukee, Glendale, Neenah, Shiocton, Fond du Lac and New London. Our highly trained, licensed therapists can help set youth on a better path. For more information on our other programs and services, visit our website.
Those referring the youth to our Residential Care Program, such as the placing agency (county/state) or parent/guardian are responsible for payment.
We do not offer scholarships or sliding scales. Cost per day is determined by the state, and covers housing, clothes, food, individualized education, individual and group therapy, medication evaluations, on-call nursing staff, houseparents and/or living unit supervision.
Our Residential Care Program includes education at our fully accredited school, Starr Academy; psychiatric assessments; socialization skills, mental and behavioral health treatment with a licensed therapist through individual, family, group or equine therapy, life skills instruction (e.g., chores, self-care, simple food prep, time management, and more); cafeteria that offers three meals a day; work experience and job training programs; and spiritual guidance (optional). It also includes family integration therapy or referrals, ongoing case management, medication administration and monitoring, and 24/7 supervision and care with a safe, family-centered structure.
Insurance agencies do not cover this level of care. Please reach out to your family provider for additional information.
Youth are typically court-ordered by the county or state to partake in the Rawhide Residential Care Program. This program helps treat youth ages 11-18 who struggle with Oppositional Defiance Disorder (ODD), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Depression, Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse (AODA), victims of abuse and/or neglect, Conduct Disorder (CD), Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD) and other forms of mental Illness. These are youth who require a structured environment, education and mental health support.
On average, most youth are with us for 4-6 months, depending on the youth’s needs and what the county or state decide. However, some have been with us as short as one month or as long as two years.
Most youth are allowed to go on home visits to family or guardians, but depend on the youth’s treatment. Parents/guardians, Rawhide staff/case managers, and the courts can discuss a plan for home visits that may vary based on the youth’s progress and therapeutic needs.
All of our therapists have master’s degrees and are trained in multiple evidenced-based treatment interventions, such as TF-CBT, DBT, CBT, equine-assisted therapy, alcohol and drug prevention, and more.
Our team of highly skilled, licensed therapists offers compassionate therapy using a variety of evidence-based approaches tailored to individual, group or family needs to address the whole person: spiritual, cognitive, behavioral, emotional and social. Our therapists guide youth as they work through their anger, anxiety, depression, abuse, trauma, suicidal thoughts and more.
Rawhide offers Alcohol and Drug Abuse (AODA) therapy and a sex offender emphasis within our program. They are provided based on the youth’s individual needs. We use the Pathways curriculum for sex offender work. Youth with AODA needs will be given the Substance Abuse Subtle Screening Inventory (SASSI) with individual needs addressed based on the assessment.
Yes, Starr Academy is accredited by Wisconsin Religious and Independent Schools Accreditation (WRISA). All high school credits earned while attending Starr Academy are fully transferable to any Wisconsin public or private school.
If an IEP has expired, we can work with the LEA to develop a new one but we do not create new IEP’s or develop initial ones for youth that never had one.
No, Rawhide does not conduct these 30-day assessments.
Our staff at the Café 15 building make nutritious, substantial and delicious meals daily for all youth.
Youth in our Residential Care Program should not bring anything because we provide everything they will need, including clothes. Our Group Home placements can bring clothing and some personal items, which should be discussed and approved with the Intake Specialist prior to arrival. When you request a youth referral, you will be provided an intake packet for more information.
No, we respect all religious beliefs and practices. Any religious activities available on campus, such as prayer or youth ministry opportunities, are optional. We just ask that youth are respectful of others who choose to take part in such activities. Youth interested in our Young Life ministry options will learn about building a relationship with Jesus Christ and how it can help them heal and make healthier life choices.
Every staff member who works at Rawhide is passionate about helping the youth we serve. Most professionals who work at Rawhide have college degrees and receive initial training to be completed within six months of being hired. This includes training in developmental care, crisis intervention, suicide prevention/self-harm awareness, first aid/CPR, permanency planning and more.
Many staff have experienced their own past struggles with mental health and trauma, which has led them down a path of service to others. Staff who have had similar experiences to youth are often the safe adults youth feel most comfortable with because they feel understood and know the adult can relate to their experiences.
See page 14 of our 2021 Annual Report for a full list of demographics of the youth living on our New London campus.
While our New London campus is secluded to the woods, there are multiple roads and buildings, including residential homes, a school and a cafeteria, giving it a small community or college campus feel. Some activities youth typically enjoy on a daily or weekly basis include, but are not limited to, basketball (indoor and outdoor), flag football, fishing (ice fishing), swimming, weight lifting, building forts, drawing, reading and playing games. Our 714-acre campus allows for youth to rejuvenate and heal from their struggles through nature and other safe environmental factors. Youth can also participate in equine-assisted therapy or work experience program.
Yes, the goal is for all residential youth ages 14 or older to have the opportunity for on-campus employment. If the youth’s treatment determines that on-campus employment would benefit the youth, they would complete an application and go through an interview process to determine the best fit. Group home residents are able to obtain employment off-campus.
Youth have an opportunity to participate in our Work Exchange Program (WEP) for jobs on and off campus, based on their interests and progress/improvement in their residential program. They can participate in the following vocations:
Grounds Crew Workers: Youth work with our youth development specialists to learn how to help with daily tasks on our New London campus, including cutting wood and maintain wood pile, donating wood to families in need, cleaning indoor and outdoor areas, moving offices or furniture for staff, organizing storage space, cutting grass, landscaping/snow removal, off-campus community service projects and more. (This position is the only one available while campus is closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.)
Barn/Equine Helper: Youth work closely with our experienced equine team in the barn with opportunities to learn proper nutrition for the horses, monitoring supplies for the barn, facilities maintenance, minor barn and equipment repairs, clean equipment, equine training, removing manure and more.
Facilities Custodial Helper: Youth work with our facilities team on campus to help with custodial tasks, such as how to safely work with cleaning products, learn the principles of cross contamination, how to properly sanitize areas, empty garbage and recycling cans, clean offices and bathrooms, and more.
Café 15 Kitchen Helper: Youth work with our food service specialists where they will learn how to food prep, properly clean the kitchen, dishes and more.
Starr Academy Library Helper: Youth team up with our school staff to learn how to organize books into various categories; color code books using stickers, labels and tape; rearrange books on shelves; inventory books by title, author and category; data entry and more.
Pennau Prep Center: Youth learn basic car care and maintenance, including detailing, changing oil, basic body repair, repairing tires, fixing brakes and engine tune-ups.
Throughout your youth’s program, parents/guardians will be involved in family therapy sessions, phone calls, treatment reviews, etc. to ensure all parties are prepared for their return home. Rawhide also provides aftercare services for up to six months after a youth is discharged. This can include phone calls and visits with the youth’s case manager or other Rawhide staff.
This residential program is available only for court-referred young men; parents cannot directly place their youth into this setting.