Monthly Archives: April 2014

Rosecrance Flower Day at Gensler Gardens set for Thursday, May 8, at two locations

Annual event funds mental health services and substance abuse treatment

ROCKFORD – Rosecrance Flower Day at Gensler Gardens marks the official start of the planting season and raises funds for mental health and substance abuse treatment programs and services.

The event is set for 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday, May 8, at both Gensler Gardens locations:  8631 11th Street, Davis Junction; and 102 Orth Road, Loves Park.

Shoppers have an opportunity to enter a drawing to win a Gensler Gardens gift card.

Rosecrance volunteers will be on hand to help shoppers find their way around the greenhouses and assist in carrying purchases to vehicles.

flowerday1The annual sale is always set for the Thursday before Mother’s Day, which is typically the turning point in northern Illinois for safe planting. Gensler Gardens is known for its lush and healthy hanging baskets, traditionally a favorite for Mother’s Day gift giving.

Gensler Gardens offers a full greenhouse selection of annuals, perennials and gorgeous hanging baskets. The Gensler family generously donates a portion of the day’s proceeds to Rosecrance. Flower Day annually raises about $25,000 to support treatment services.

“Once again, we are enormously grateful to the Gensler family for kicking off the planting season with a special event that benefits Rosecrance and the people we serve,” said Lynne Vass, Rosecrance Sr. VP of Development. “The slow spring has forced area gardeners to be patient, but it’s time now to start planning and planting. The greenhouse plants are really spectacular this year.”

For more information about Flower Day, call 815.387.5608.

Download the press release.

Rosecrance Foundation Benefit raises record funds to help clients who need financial aid


The Texas Tenors, from left, Marcus Collins, J.C. Fisher and John Hagen, wow the audience at the Rosecrance Foundation Benefit on April 28, 2014, with their rendition of the Lee Greenwood hit, “Proud to be an American.”

ROCKFORD – The Rosecrance Foundation has raised a record $575,000 through the annual Benefit, held  April 28 at Giovanni’s and headlined by the country-pop-classic trio, The Texas Tenors.

The sold-out event also featured presentation of The Castle Award, Rosecrance’s pinnacle honor, to Thomas C. Furst in recognition of almost two decades of leadership on Rosecrance boards of directors. Most recently, Furst chaired the Rosecrance Health Network Board for 7 years. He previously chaired the Foundation Board, which he joined in 1997, and has served in virtually every volunteer leadership role for the organization.

Proceeds from the annual event go to the Kinley Charity Care Fund, which provides funds to serve individuals who need financial help in order to get the services they need for mental health and substance use disorders. The Benefit has raised more than $7 million to help families since The Kinley Fund was established in 1984. Last year, a record 377 families received assistance for treatment.

Lisa Lindman, chair of the Rosecrance Foundation Board, expressed gratitude for the generosity of benefactors in the community who support the Benefit.

“We owe the success of this event to our many generous donors who understand the importance of treatment to the wellbeing of families and entire communities,” Lindman said. “The money we raise at the Benefit translates into direct care for our clients who need assistance the most. These are real, concrete, direct services that save lives.”


In accepting the Rosecrance Castle Award at the Foundation Benefit on April 28, 2014, Thomas C. Furst thanks the sold-out house of more than 800 guests for their generosity in providing funds to help more people get treatment for substance use and mental health disorders. Rosecrance President/CEO Philip W. Eaton is in the background.

An annual tradition for the Benefit is presentation of the Castle Award for exemplary commitment by an individual or family to the Rosecrance mission. In presenting the 2014 Castle Award to Furst, Rosecrance President/CEO Philip W. Eaton called him a “transformational leader.”
“He has a unique quality of being able to bring others to the table, and then he educates and motivates them to support a cause,” Eaton said. “We have been fortunate that for almost two decades, Tom has used those rare talents to benefit Rosecrance.”

Capping the evening was a performance by The Texas Tenors, who brought their unique style to entertain the packed room of more than 800 guests.

During the afternoon, before the event, the group performed for teens in treatment for substance abuse at the adolescent campus and answered their questions.

Download the press release.

Work Begins on New Rosecrance Ware Center

Rosecrance was featured on WIFR Monday, April 21. The report highlighted the new Rosecrance Ware Center. Watch the video and read the article here.

Rosecrance gives testimony at Illinois House Task Force on Heroin hearing

Rosecrance Chief Medical Officer Thomas C. Wright was among the treatment professionals who testified before a newly formed 39-member Illinois House Bipartisan Task Force on Heroin, which has convened hearings in Northern Illinois to better understand the problem and the solutions.

taskforce_infoThe House recently declared heroin to be a statewide public health crisis. Rosecrance was asked to provide testimony about treatment and solutions to a health crisis that has caused thousands of overdoses – hundreds of them fatal – across the state. Dr. Wright and Craig Stallings, administrator of Rosecrance’s adult treatment center, testified on April 17 at a hearing at Arlington Heights Village Hall. State Rep. Lou Lang (D-Skokie) is chairing the task force.

The next hearing is set for 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, April 24, at Addison Village Hall, 1 Friendship Plaza, Addison.

At the first hearing, held April 15 in downtown Chicago at the Bilandic Building, lawmakers produced testimony about the extent of the problem. Area law enforcement officials spoke about how heroin was affecting communities under their jurisdiction, and family members of people who had overdosed testified to the human toll of the deadly drug.

download_heroinbrochureOn April 17, lawmakers began hearing testimony about solutions, including treatment options, which was the subject of Dr. Wright’s and Mr. Stallings’ testimony. They spoke to the importance of evidence-based treatment programs grounded in the 12 Steps and supported by medically assisted treatment therapies.

Rosecrance also supports increased prevention and education programming in elementary, middle and high schools across the state, as well as aggressive training of first responders in the use of Naloxone, which has been proven to reverse the effects of an overdose if administered quickly enough.

Rosecrance launches regular workshop series to help families develop better parenting skills

Free “Parent Cafe” to be offered monthly at Rosecrance Berry Campus

ROCKFORD — Rosecrance’s Parent Café takes a humorous look at parenting  and a serious look at discipline. Workshops are offered on the last Monday of the month beginning on April 28, 2014, at the Rosecrance Berry Campus in Rockford.

The event starts at 5:30 p.m. with social time, followed by the presentation from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Rosecrance Berry Campus, 8616 Northern Avenue in Rockford.

At the first café, Emily Gilliam of Rosecrance, a licensed marriage and family therapist (LMFT), will speak on issues of controlling obnoxious behavior, encouraging good behavior, and strengthening relationships. Parents will learn simple techniques to get their kids to STOP doing what they DON’T want them to do and START doing what they DO want them to do. The event is targeted toward parents with children between the ages of  2 and 12.

The free event is open to the community. Participants do not need to be clients of the Berry Campus. Refreshments will be served.

The Rosecrance Berry Campus offers services for children and adolescents, including mental health screenings, child and family therapy, intensive outpatient programs, community support, and 24/7 screening and assessment services.

The Parent Café also presents an opportunity for parents who may have general questions about their children’s wellbeing to come together in a friendly and welcoming environment. A combination of education and discussion are provided to assist parents with their concerns.

Call 815-391-1000 for more information about Rosecrance’s services and events.

Download the press release.

Experiential therapies provide new options to substance abuse treatment programs

article3When a substance abuser seeks help, it’s likely that he or she will fully expect to be part of one-on-one talks, group discussions and other routes of traditional treatment. But tending to the growth of a plant or creating a painting? Probably not.

And yet participation in horticulture, art, music, fitness and other areas of interest have become an integral part of several treatment programs across the country, including Rosecrance Health Network.

It’s all part of recognizing the success of Experiential therapies in art, music, fitness and other areas in assisting recovering addicts, according to Christine Nicholson, experiential therapies supervisor at the Rosecrance adolescent campus in Rockford. “Teen patients use life experiences to help them understand abstract recovery concepts, which in turn, help tell the client’s story,” says Nicholson.

And understanding those abstract recovery concepts can come in a painting, a song, a period of meditation or another form personal expression.

“Our clients thrive in experiential opportunities and comment that they were finally able to step outside of their comfort zones and feel comfortable being who they are. They talk often about how they are learning to love life again by being exposed to healthy play and leisure and feel better physically, mentally and spiritually,” says Keri Fager, experiential therapies supervisor at the Rosecrance adult campus. “They share that they are better able to be present in the moment, feel more centered and are able to unload their concerns and worries and practice mindfulness. They comment about the safety of being able to finally express themselves through art, music or other creative expression, and learn to regulate and manage their emotions that they had suppressed through their addiction.”

article2Each experiential therapy differs, but as a starting point, an art therapy program might look something like this:

  • Patients might be asked to draw their addiction, illustrating what would it look like.
  • Patients might be asked draw a picture of an incident that occurred when they were using drugs.
  • Patients might be asked to draw where they are on their path to recovery.

Working together

For experiential therapy to be successful, it has to be one component of a comprehensive treatment plan. “Experiential therapies staff are fully integrated into the interdisciplinary treatment team,” says Nicholson. “Everyone works together to meet the client’s goals in the individual treatment plan. The clinical team looks closely at how well clients demonstrate such recovery values as honesty, teamwork and acceptance in their experiential therapies activities as part of the bigger picture when they evaluate the client’s progress toward their individual treatment goals.”

Fager says experiential therapies can help patients with their long-term success. “We work with clients while in treatment to learn, explore and practice new life skills through their own strengths and interests so that they can be prepared for real-life situations,” says Fager. “Research shows that participation in experiential therapies increases self-esteem and improves motivation, follow-through with goals, leisure skills, social skills and health in general.”

Eye toward the future


The Ipsen Conservatory at the Rosecrance Griffin Williamson Campus.

At the adolescent treatment center in Rockford, the experiential therapies program now includes the use of the new 750-square foot Ipsen Conservatory, a glass-and-steel classroom for the horticultural program. The conservatory, which was built on a rooftop of the 78-bed treatment center, is used as a classroom for teens in treatment. As with the goals for Rosecrance’s other experiential programs, counselors and administrators hope that patients will cultivate and continue the horticulture skills they learned in the conservatory after they complete the recovery program, just as many patients continue pursuing the arts, meditation strategies or fitness plans they learned at Rosecrance as part of their lives outside the facility.

“Research shows that participation in experiential therapies increases self-esteem and improves motivation, follow-through with goals, leisure skills, social skills and health in general,” says Fager.




National poll shows majority of U.S. teens' parents think new marijuana laws put teens at risk

Rosecrance believes the legalization of marijuana may send a confusing message to teenagers

Rosecrance McHenry County

74% of parents of teenagers agree that “marijuana is an addictive substance for teenagers.”

ROCKFORD — A large majority of parents of teenagers (80%) agree that with the recent legalization of marijuana for medicinal and recreational uses, teens may be more likely to experiment with marijuana.

The poll of parents of children aged 13-17 was conducted online by Harris Poll in January and commissioned by Rosecrance Health Network, a leading national provider of substance abuse treatment for teens and adults. With almost 100 years of experience serving children and families, Rosecrance is the country’s premier treatment facility for teens.

Rosecrance Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Thomas Wright, said he is concerned that legalization very likely may increase marijuana use among teens, which could have both short- and long-term consequences.

“Legal does not mean harmless,” Dr. Wright said. “There is no safe level of substance use among teens because their brains are still developing.”

Dr. Wright said drug use of any kind can negatively affect how the young brain develops and functions. The long-term impact can include lowered IQ, impaired cognitive functioning, depression, anxiety and psychosis. Additionally, marijuana today is stronger than it was even a decade ago.

“Beyond that,” Dr. Wright said, “research clearly shows that marijuana is addictive and that people who begin using at an early age are many times more likely to become addicted later in life to other drugs.”

Additional results from the survey include:

  • 74% agree that “marijuana is an addictive substance for teenagers”
  • 69% agree that “having easier access to marijuana may accelerate teen children moving to other drugs more quickly”
  • 60% agree that “marijuana is more potent than it has been in the past”

Dr. Wright said parents need to start early talking with their children about healthy behaviors and avoiding drug use. He explained that having face time every day with children and keeping track of their friend groups, grades and extracurricular activities is important. Additionally, parents should establish boundaries and make it clear that any substance use is unacceptable.  At the first indication of substance use, parents should confront the child and talk with a knowledgeable professional, whether it is a pastor, a school counselor or someone familiar with addiction counseling.

“If necessary, reach out for professional, evidence-based treatment,” Dr. Wright said. “Nothing good happens when substance abuse goes untreated. Families need to know that help is available.”

Rosecrance names Anne Fridh, PsyD., to new role as administrator of Ware Center

Fridh brings clinical and administrative experience to position

annefridh_smallROCKFORD – Anne Fridh, PsyD., has been named Administrator of the Rosecrance Ware Center, a role to which she brings more than two decades of experience and leadership in behavioral healthcare.

In her new position, she will oversee adult mental health operations, including triage emergency services and the crisis residential program, soon to be combined in the creation of the Crisis Stabilization Center in downtown Rockford.

In addition, she will oversee the move of adult outpatient mental health services from the current location at the Ware Center on West State Street in downtown Rockford to a new location on North Main Street. Rosecrance is renovating a long-vacant former grocery store in the 2700 block of North Main Street in order to relocate the Ware Center to that site. The move will allow for program improvements, and the space is being designed to meet the needs of clients and staff. A complete overhaul of the site includes major aesthetic improvements to the building and grounds.

“This is a time of great opportunity for Rosecrance to further improve the continuum of care in our community,” Fridh said.  “I am honored and excited to represent Rosecrance in this new capacity.”

Fridh earned her B.S. in Family Social Services from Northern Illinois University and her M.S. in Child and Family Services from Northern Illinois University. She obtained a Doctorate of Psychology (PsyD.) from the Illinois School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University.

Fridh gained extensive clinical and leadership experience at various social service agencies in the region, including at the former Janet Wattles Center, which merged into Rosecrance three years ago. She also has been in private practice and has served as program director at a large residential facility in Texas serving teens with behavior disorders.

Dave Gomel, Rosecrance Chief Operating Officer, said Fridh takes the job at an exciting time of growth and change for the Ware Center.

“We have a lot of great opportunities ahead of us, and we have the chance to make an indelible mark in our community, region and state as a leader in community mental health/behavioral health services,” Gomel said.

Click here to download the press release.

Rosecrance McHenry County invites public to open houses April 9 and 10 at two new sites

Meet staff, enjoy refreshments at new Crystal Lake and McHenry locations

MCHENRY COUNTY – Rosecrance welcomes area residents to attend open house events at two new locations to meet staff and learn about expanded programming to serve residents of McHenry County who seek treatment for mental health and substance use disorders.

Guests are welcome at one or both of the open houses:

  • April 9, 4-5:30 p.m.: 422 Tracy Court, Crystal Lake
  • April 10, 4-5:30 p.m.: 4501 Prime Parkway, McHenry

“Rosecrance is honored to put down permanent roots in Crystal Lake and McHenry to meet the needs of residents of our county,” said Chris Gleason, director of Rosecrance McHenry County. “We are particularly eager to share information about our expanded substance abuse treatment services. Rosecrance has a long track record of providing quality care in the addiction treatment field, and we’re grateful to be able to bring that deep experience to McHenry County.”

The new offices will provide comprehensive outpatient services for children, teens, adults and families with mental health and substance use disorders. Psychiatric services and medication support are offered at both locations.

For more information about current or new services, call Rosecrance McHenry County at 815-363-6132.

View the Rosecrance McHenry County Open Houses invitation for more information.

Rosecrance Foundation announces headliner for 2014 Benefit: The Texas Tenors

April 28 event will raise funds to serve families in need

ROCKFORD – The Texas Tenors bring their unique blend of country, gospel and classical music to The Rosecrance Foundation Benefit on April 28 at Giovanni’s to help children, teens, adults and families who need financial assistance for substance abuse and mental health treatment.

The Texas Tenors wowed audiences as a top four finalist act on NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” in 2009. After finishing as the highest-ranking vocal group in the show’s history, The Texas Tenors took their breathtaking talent, humor and cowboy charm on tour, performing more than 500 concerts in 20 countries.

texas starIn keeping with the style of the headline act, the Rosecrance Foundation Benefit theme for 2014 is “Tip Your Hat to Recovery.” The event is set for 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $175 each or $1,750 for a table of 10. Sponsorships are still available. Giovanni’s is located at 610 N. Bell School Road, Rockford.

Other highlights of the evening include personal stories of recovery from Rosecrance alumni and current clients. In addition, Rosecrance annually awards the Castle Award at the Benefit to a family or individual who has contributed in an exemplary fashion to the mission of help, hope and recovery. This year’s recipient of the Castle Award is Thomas C. Furst, who has served the organization in various roles for almost two decades.

All proceeds from the Benefit go to charity care. Lynne Vass, Sr. VP of Development for Rosecrance, said the Benefit has raised more than $7 million to help families since The Kinley Charity Fund was established in 1984. Last year the Kinley Fund provided assistance to a record 377 families.

Lisa Lindman, chair of the Rosecrance Foundation Board, expressed gratitude for the generosity of benefactors in the community who support The Kinley Fund through the Benefit.

“The generosity of our donors reflects an understanding that there are very few families that have not been touched in some way by addiction or mental illness,” Lindman said. “It’s impossible to express how grateful we are for the continuing support of our benefactors, which has translated through the years into real, life-saving care for thousands of people.”

Each year, the Benefit features a gourmet meal, first-class entertainment and  stories of hope told by former Rosecrance clients. The Castle Award, also part of the annual program, is named for the late Clarence and Millard Castle, a father and son whose combined service to the Rosecrance Board of Directors totaled more than 100 years.

For information about tickets or sponsorships, call Lynne Vass at 815.387.5602 or email

Download the press release here.