Therapeutic Foster Care

Our Therapeutic Foster Care Program, one of the first in Kentucky when it began in 1987, has proved to be a highly successful and effective treatment model for children and adolescents with emotional, developmental, intellectual and/or behavioral problems.


Our model is based on the belief that a youth should be treated in his or her environment, engaging all the systems in which the youth interacts to conceptualize and implement treatment goals.  Primary therapeutic care is provided by treatment parents who are specially trained by REACH in positive behavior management, crisis prevention and intervention, therapeutic communication and related areas.  Each treatment family works in close collaboration with a clinician who provides ongoing consultation and supervision, and is available 24/7.

Most of the young people served by REACH of Louisville have significant developmental difficulties. Eligibility for inclusion in the program includes classification by the state as Level 5 (the highest level of need) and the capacity to benefit from a family-based treatment approach. Many experience multiple disabilities. We are one of the few Kentucky agencies approved as both a Supports for Community Living (SCL) provider and a foster care placement agency for state social services agency. Thus, REACH of Louisville can offer a unique opportunity to provide permanency, stability, and continuity through long-term placement in real-world home settings for  individuals in foster care and young people aging out of foster care.

To reiterate, some key features of REACH of Louisville’s Therapeutic Foster Care program include:

  • All Clinical Coordinators are experienced doctoral-level licensed mental health professionals or masters level special educators;
  • Therapeutic services for mental health treatment issues are offered in-house, and are part of the full range of treatment services provided by licensed psychologists, at no extra cost to the Cabinet;
  • 24-7 Crisis Management Team;
  • Clinical Coordinators on call 24-7;
  • School consultation and pupil advocacy;
  • Highly skilled therapeutic foster families, chosen and trained by REACH staff to deal with challenging behaviors using positive behavior management;
  • REACH is an SCL adult foster care provider, allowing those with significant disabilities to remain in family care when they “age out”;
  • REACH is not a special needs adoption agency, however, since July 2000 well over 30 children have been adopted by their REACH families; and,
  • REACH has held a CARF accreditation since 2003.