About This Program
Target Population: Sexually reactive children (age 12 and up) and sexually abusive children and adolescents; also used for adult sexual offenders
For children/adolescents ages: 12 – 25
The HOPE Program works with adolescent clients in individual and group settings. The program specializes in forensic and cognitive behavioral therapy, as well as general psychotherapy for individuals, couples, and families coping with emotional, behavioral, and psychological challenges. The HOPE Program also offers treatment approaches for family reunification and safety planning.
The goals of the HOPE Program are:
- Providing crisis intervention
- Reducing negative or destructive behaviors
- Managing emotions
- Overcoming and learning to cope with problems such as sexual, physical, and emotional abuse
The essential components of the HOPE Program include:
- Based on the following premises:
- Every client is an individual who deserves the highest quality of care and the opportunity to overcome past or current harmful behaviors and the right to live a healthy, happy life that is free from abuse.
- All members of families are affected by sexual abuse: including the child who was sexually abused, the person who has offended sexually, and extended family members.
- The person who has offended is the responsible person; however it is paramount that the family, victim, and offender receive appropriate services in order ensure the offender and the victim are provided with the opportunity to prevent future offending and the victim receives the opportunity to work through his/her own victimization.
- Each individual in the family is given the opportunity for supportive services. The objective is for the individual and the family unit to move forward in a healthier, better functioning, and appropriate manner.
- The HOPE Program utilizes the support of the court in order to ensure the safety and well-being of children and family members. Sex offender treatment is often shameful for individuals to participate in and therefore utilizing the support of community resources and criminal court can be necessary.
- Upon intake, all individuals undergo an initial intake, which is an empirically informed assessment that guides the client’s and family’s treatment planning.
- Clients are then assigned to an appropriate treatment track (e.g., group, individual and/or family therapy).
- Treatment is guided by the components of the comprehensive evaluation.
- For the sexually offending adolescent, treatment consists of:
- Reducing risk factors to re-offend
- Learning about victim impact
- Recognizing risk for sexual re-offending & learning prevention awareness
- Enhancing parent-child communication/relationships
- Developing a support network
- Enhancing social relationships
- Addressing intimacy deficits
- Addressing cognitive distortions (i.e., unhelpful thoughts) supportive of offending
- Enhancing prosocial sexual attitudes
- Increasing accountability for sexual offenses
- Enhancing healthy sexual interests
- Enhancing affective expression/regulation
- Enhancing awareness of victim impact
- Enhancing self-esteem
- Increasing ability to manage impulse control
- Decreasing compulsive use pornography, when necessary
- Developing a safety plan/relapse prevention plan
- Treatment goals for a sexually reactive or sexually abused adolescent should be age appropriate for the child and take into consideration if family reunification will take place. Pending the outcome of a comprehensive assessment of the sexually reactive child, specific treatment goals could include:
- Engaging the child in the therapy process.
- Preparing the child and allowing them express themselves in a safe, non-abusive environment
- Reducing the child’s guilt (overcome self-blame)
- Supporting the child as he/she comes to terms with the abuse
- For sexual offending adolescents - The HOPE Program consists of individual psychotherapy sessions, group sessions (with 7 to 8 clients per group), and family therapy (only if appropriate). For sexually reactive adolescents - The HOPE Program consists of individual psychotherapy sessions and family therapy when appropriate.
HOPE Program directly provides services to children/adolescents and addresses the following:
- Sexually reactive or sexually abusive
Services Involve Family/Support Structures:
This program involves the family or other support systems in the individual's treatment: When appropriate, family members are encouraged to participate in group or family therapy setting. Based on the client’s need, the clinician will determine the best, safest course forward when working with family members. The HOPE Program offers each family member their own treatment program which may consist of individual, group, couples, or family therapy. The work one does in their own therapy is often beneficial to the family unit.
For sexual offending adolescents - Individual psychotherapy, 50-minute weekly session. Group psychotherapy, 90-minute weekly session. Family therapy (only if appropriate), 90-minute session as needed. For sexually reactive adolescents - Individual psychotherapy, 50-minute weekly session. Family therapy, (only if appropriate), 90-minute session as needed.
This program is typically conducted in a(n):
- Outpatient Clinic
HOPE Program includes a homework component:
Homework is goal-specific and tailored to the client’s individual needs. It addresses the topics identified above under treatment components. Treatment module examples are:
- Development of a safety plan
- Identifying triggers that lead to acting out
- Development of thought records
Resources Needed to Run Program
The typical resources for implementing the program are:
- Group and individual therapy rooms
- Projector for PowerPoint presentation in group therapy and case management/containment meetings
- Television and DVR player
- Computers and printers
- Art supplies
- Treatment videos
Education and Training
Prerequisite/Minimum Provider Qualifications
Master's degree in Social Work, Master's in Psychology, Doctoral level psychologist.
Education and Training Resources
There is not a manual that describes how to implement this program ; but there is training available for this program.
- Shannon Smith, LCSW, Founder and Director of HOPE Program
phone: (510) 764-2428 x13
Training is obtained:
Number of days/hours:
Dependent on needs of organization
Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research
Currently, there are no published, peer-reviewed research studies for HOPE Program.
No reference materials are currently available for HOPE Program.
Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: October 2013
Date Program Content Last Reviewed by Program Staff: May 2012
Date Program Originally Loaded onto CEBC: May 2012