FIRST at Blue Ridge, Inc. is a private, nonprofit, charitable 501(c)(3) organization founded and in operation since 1991. It is only the second Therapeutic Community to be licensed by the State of North Carolina.
FIRST has an 85 bed male facility and a 65 bed female facility in Ridgecrest, North Carolina (East of Asheville just off of exit 66 on Interstate 40). FIRST also offers several transitional living (half-way) houses on its campus. As part of their program, residents will learn marketable job skills and demonstrate the ability to maintain gainful employment.
FIRST is a voluntary program and does not accept any individuals with convictions for violent crimes, sexual offenses or arson. Program participants are screened carefully prior to admission. Some program residents are on probation and communication is maintained with the Courts and the Probation Officers assigned to those individuals in order to maintain compliance. Any deviation or violation is immediately reported to the appropriate party.
FIRST at Blue Ridge, Inc. provides highly structured, disciplined programs. Staff is on site 24 hours a day, seven days a week to monitor and ensure program compliance.
FIRST participants receive individual and group therapy sessions along with case management, life skills, anger management, parenting skills, and relapse prevention. Evidence based practices such as The Matrix Model, Motivational Interviewing Techniques, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Behavior Modification and others are the mainstays of the program. Active participation in self-help programs such as AA (Alcoholics Anonymous), NA (Narcotics Anonymous), Celebrate Recovery, SMART Recovery, etc. is highly encouraged.
FIRST long-term clients earn their way through the program by participating in vocational training assignments for employers who serve as Vocational Training Partners.
FIRST realizes that some individuals cannot commit to long-term treatment due to employment or family responsibilities and offers short-term intensive programs ranging from 14 to 90 days in duration. This is a fee for service program.
FIRST also offers a 24 month program for Veterans called “Vet’s FIRST, which is partially funded by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs. Clients in this program live and receive substance use treatment, case management and other services on the FIRST campus while maintaining outside employment.
FIRST is a positive program that takes substance users, which are non-contributing members of society, and redirects them to become responsible, productive and independent citizens. Essentially converting them from a tax burden to a tax paying member of the community.
Substance abuse is responsible for more than $240 billion in health and disability costs each year in this country. The cost to our society itself cannot be calculated. FIRST at Blue Ridge, Inc. is committed to making a difference and in building healthy lives, one person, and one family at a time. It all starts with the FIRST step. Let us help.