Our Program

The Youth Recovery Center (YRC) is a treatment program for young men and women 15 through 18 years of age, who are diagnosed with substance abuse and mental illness. The program draws highly motivated youth who are willing to engage in the comprehensive components of substance abuse treatment.

YRC’s program includes 24-hour nursing and medical care, psychiatric care, individual, group, and family therapy, accredited schooling, recreation therapy, AA/NA programming, and aftercare coordination. During the youth’s course of treatment, nursing, psychiatric assessments, and evaluations are completed as a means to establish accurate diagnostics. Through psycho-education and therapeutic principles, YRC strives to support youth in observing the broad range of their behaviors as a means for self-reflection and change.

YRC serves up to 10 youth within Valley View Hospital. The center includes both private and double rooms, each with a private bath. The day room is the hub where school, group therapy, meals, movies, and games occur. The unit includes offices for nursing assessment and education, family therapy, primary counseling, and admissions coordination.

YRC uses the amenities of the hospital such as the cafeteria, chapel, and exterior patios to enhance the client experience. The natural beauty of the Roaring Fork Valley is essential to the learning and recreational goals of the clients. We are proudly supported by community artists, nonprofit and business owners who collaborate with YRC to provide clients with varied insight and awareness.

Daily Life

By the time the sun hits the valley floor in Glenwood Springs, clients at the Youth Recovery Center already have a good start on the day. We get up early, but the pay-off is a warm shower and a hearty breakfast. The first business of the day is school, which includes mindfulness, writing and working on individual education goals. Mid-morning is time set aside for a staff and community meeting; individual, group, and family therapy sessions; medical appointments; aftercare meetings; massages and work on written therapeutic assignments.

Our program includes group, individual, and family therapy. Groups are both psychoeducational and process providing clients an opportunity to process feelings and beliefs about recovery.

After lunch, clients make phone calls and participate in social time. Then, it’s off to recreation. Most days, clients go out into the community or surrounding hills for hikes, a work out at the gym, bowling or a trip to the Clay Center for ceramics. Dinner is enjoyed up in the hospital cafeteria; which sounds bad, but the cafeteria here is so nice that it draws in customers off the street. After dinner, clients regroup for an evening activity such as AA/NA meetings or a skill building group. The day concludes with a relaxation exercise before bed.

Recreation Therapy

Understanding the connection between mind and body, we carefully created our program to include a wide range of Recreational Therapy activities to inspire creativity, build strength, and ignite passions. We balance an intensive therapeutic program with daily opportunities to get out, get moving, and have fun in a group setting. From hiking the Maroon Bells to learning yoga, our clients are introduced to multiple cultural, artistic, and physical activities to support their recovery.

Common Questions

Transitioning from home, a group setting or detention can be unsettling for many teens. Often times there is much anxiety related to not knowing what things will be like, and how you will fit in. Below are some common questions and answers that can hopefully ease anxiety and prepare you for coming to YRC. The list is far from comprehensive, so if you do not see your question below, please feel free to contact us.

  • YRC accepts self-pay, private insurance, Medicaid or a combination. Please contact the referral and development coordinator to review these options at 970.384.7484 or email us with your questions.

  • The Youth Recovery Center is a co-ed facility. Girls and boys have separate rooms and share in daily groups and activities. We have a zero tolerance policy regarding sexual harassment, treatment relationships, and inappropriate contact, and strive to create a safe container for deep work.

  • On average, we typically have around 8-9 clients at a time, with a max of 10 clients. New Admissions and discharges are every Mondays and Wednesdays, so our group is constantly evolving and shifting.

  • Normally, clients will have a roommate at some point during your stay at YRC. There are 2 single rooms and 4 double rooms so when we are full, 8 people are sharing a room. If you have concerns about sharing a room with another client, please talk to staff during the intake process. During COVID-19, all clients will have a private room.

  • Coming into treatment it is normal to wonder what ‘they’ are going to do to your mind. The US Military has researched brainwashing since the end of World War II, and it doesn’t work. You do not have to be committed to lifelong sobriety to successfully complete YRC or benefit from being here. In fact you can be skeptical. You do not have to figure out what we want you to say. We do not try to make you believe anything. In fact, we often bring up the cost of sobriety in terms of what you will have to give up. We ask each client to be a least a little bit open and honest about their use of alcohol and drugs, why they used, harm or possible harm and where their life is headed. We ask clients to think about their responsibility and the responsibilities of others. You will have an opportunity to think about where you want to go with your life, how you can get there and what skills you will need. We encourage you to make thoughtful decisions about the use of alcohol or drugs in your life.

    We assume that everyone who is referred to this level of treatment has some level of ambivalence. That means that part of you loves the high and the lifestyle of the drugs you use. We hope that you have experienced a least some negative consequences. Getting sober is not a conversion experience. That is, it is not like a person who has suddenly found religious faith. People are not cured of addictions. We can help you strengthen the part of you that wants to change and heal. Once you step onto the path of recovery, you can start to trust the process.

  • Piercings of any kind, jewelry, earrings, makeup and nail polish are not allowed. Please leave all valuables at home.

  • *Due to COVID restrictions, we do not currently allow in-person family visits.

    Family visits are highly encouraged and are typically paired with a family therapy session. Visitors are limited to approved family members only and must be scheduled by the family therapist. Clients and family members must have at least one family therapy session prior, or on the same day, as the first family visit. During visits, clients and guests are required to stay on the hospital grounds. Visits are typically 2-3 hours depending on your level. Girlfriends, boyfriends, partners and friends are not allowed to visit though can potentially partake in family therapy.

  • Our 42 day program has been designed to provide not only substance abuse and therapeutic treatment, but also as an opportunity to take space from toxic substances, stressful relationships, peer pressure, temptations and legal troubles. This space includes smoking and drinking caffeinated beverages such as coffee and soda. We realize that this is a challenge for many teens, and require and absence from all stimulants that can affect your mood, sleep, and treatment.

  • Please follow our packing guidelines including in the YRC Information Packet.

  • To help you stay present and focused in treatment, clients are not permitted to bring personal electronic items such as smart phones, phones, or other electronic devices.


The YRC welcomes your referral. Please contact the YRC Referral and Development Coordinator at 970.384.7484 to discuss a youth you believe would benefit from this program.

Referrals are accepted from probation officers, case workers, parents, therapists, teachers, medical professionals and adolescents themselves. A community support model is promoted in which all parties involved with the youth are encouraged to participate.

Male client, age 18 star

“Thanks to YRC, I am where I am today and words can’t describe how thankful I am. My advice would be to make the best out of the program. The 6 weeks go by fast and before you know it, you’ll be a changed person. You gotta make the best out of what you have so make the best out of YRC. The staff are always there for you. They’re amazing people and they have big hearts.”

Male client, age 17 star

“So I wanted to say thank you to all the amazing staff at YRC. I had a hiccup, but I’m doing good now. And, I’m happy I use the things you guys taught me every day, and it makes each day easier!”

PO Larimer County star

“YRC has been a key asset to our juvenile drug court program and juvenile probation department. The program has been helpful in aiding our youth to conquer their addictions and helps guide them towards a sober lifestyle. Each area teaches them different coping skills, life skills, anger management, healthy peer relations, and many other key elements to being a productive member of society.”

Parent, regarding family therapy star

“I just wanted to say, thank you so much for everything…you helped us tremendously and I mean that. I don’t know how things will turn out from now on in my family, but one thing I know…I have a huge challenge and I won’t give up. Thanks for all your support!”


The YRC welcomes your referral. Please contact the YRC Referral and Development Coordinator at 970.384.7484 to discuss a youth you believe would benefit from this program.

Referrals are accepted from probation officers, case workers, parents, therapists, teachers, medical professionals and adolescents themselves. A community support model is promoted in which all parties involved with the youth are encouraged to participate.

Initial Referral Form



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Youth Recovery Center
Valley View Hospital | 1906 Blake Avenue | Glenwood Springs CO, 81601 | 970.384.7470