The ultimate goal of MST is to provide intensive family therapy so that the youth’s caregivers have the skills and resources they need to address independently the difficulties that arise when rearing teenagers with behavioral problems and to give youth the skills to cope with family, peer, school and neighborhood problems.
MST interventions typically aim to: improve caregiver discipline practices; enhance family relations; decrease a youth’s association with deviant peers; increase a youth’s association with pro-social peers; improve a youth’s school or vocational performance; engage youth in positive recreational outlets; develop a natural support network of extended family, neighbors, and friends to help caregivers achieve and maintain such changes. Success is monitored by eliminating the need for out-of-home placement for juveniles, during and after MST treatment, by reducing arrest rates for youth, and by improved school performance.
All staff hold master’s degrees in either social work, marriage and family therapy, counseling or related discipline, in addition to having clinical experience. All staff adhere to the Multisystemic Therapy Model which is a clearly defined and scientifically grounded treatment theory. MST is a research-based model that has proven long-term effectiveness through rigorous scientific evaluations. It has been chosen by the Center for the Study of Violence Prevention as one of the ten best practice “blueprints” for intervention with high risk youth.