In June 2015 the Denver Street School opened Hope Academy, a campus specifically developed for adolescent girls who have experienced complex trauma. In an effort to bring healing and restoration to these young women, Hope Academy offers a quality high school education, encourages personal growth, teaches empowerment, and offers therapeutic elements including individual and group therapy. Hope strives to be a safe place where girls can heal in an environment of creativity, imagination, love, and laughter. Through these means, our prayer is that each student will earn her high school diploma and be set on a path of a bright and successful future.
Trauma-Informed Care recognizes the presence of trauma symptoms and acknowledges the role trauma may play in an individual’s life. At Hope Academy, our program strives to meet the specific challenges our students may be experiencing as a result of the trauma they endured.
Extreme trauma can have long-term psychological effects including intense hopelessness, shame, humiliation, shock, denial, and disorientation. Additionally, survivors may experience anxiety disorders such as PTSD, phobias, panic attacks, severe depression, and suicidal ideation.
Unfortunately, trauma can go even deeper. Common behavioral characteristics include attachment difficulties, emotional dysregulation, dissociative adaptations, disrupted cognitive functioning, and skewed self-concept. Suvivors can also experience developmental delays, language and cognitive difficulties, deficits in verbal and memory skills, poor academic performance, and difficulty concentrating.
To meet the complex needs of our students, Hope Academy has a 1:8 teacher/student ratio, onsite counseling services, and access to important community resources. Additionally, all of our staff and volunteers attend a trauma-informed training to learn how to empathize with, communicate with, and support our students.
For those students whose life circumstances make it difficult for them to fully engage in school, Hope Academy’s staff is available to help create a plan that will support that student’s academic and personal success.
We offer the following assistance to our students based on their needs:
- an individualized academic plan at the student’s tested academic grade level.
- implementation of an IEP provided by another academic institution.
- Hope Academy is willing to work with any professionals necessary to best accommodate student needs.
- Healthy lunches
- Transportation to and from school
- On-site childcare
- Parenting skills classes
- Help with securing Social Security cards and other ID cards
- Help navigating court and legal issues in conjunction with attorneys, victim advocates, law enforcement, and social services teams