Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ: Hope Harbor Program Eligibility

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Who is eligible for admission to Hope Harbor?

Girls ages 12-17, who are not pregnant or chemically dependent, who live within about a three-hour driving radius from the desired placement location (Marshall or Winona) whose parents can also commit to the program requirements.  

Many applicants have participated in behaviors that have caused disruption in their lives and the lives of others, including but not limited to: self harm, depression, eating disorders, anxiety problems, sexual abuse and exploitation, self-esteem issues, bullying or being bullied, anger and aggression, pornography, promiscuity including online, legal trouble, problems at home, runaway, past abuse, and other self destructive behaviors.

Are kids who need help 'bad kids?'

Not in the least.  We can't stand the labels of 'bad kids' or 'troubled kids.'

While the behaviors and situations mentioned above may be common place for many teens, that doesn't make it 'normal' or 'okay.'
We are not meant to simply exist or survive.  We are meant to thrive.  

Our residents are not bad kids, messed up, bad seeds, troubled kids, delinquents or any of the other lies the enemy would have you believe.  
They are children of God, created with a plan and a purpose, overcoming the attack on their lives and their families through the blood of Jesus Christ.

They are just like you and I, who have all gone through our own battles.  We offer a hand that will guide them into the right direction.

How do I know if things are 'bad enough' to get help?

Will things get better on their own?  Maybe.  We hope so.  But probably not.

Where were you, your child, your family, your situation one year ago?
Where are things today?
Where do you see things one year from now if you continue on as you are today?

We sincerely wish there wasn't a need for our services, that we didn't have to exist.  But we know that we need to, and we are glad that we do.  
And we are so thankful that those who need our services are brave enough to seek them. 

Instead of asking yourself if things are bad enough to get help, instead ask yourself:
How much more destruction am I going to allow before I say enough is enough? What is my 'last straw?'

Call us today and let us pray with you, and let's see what the Lord has in store.

Is Hope Harbor just for teens?

Residents live on-site, while their parents and family participate in the healing process through commitment to individual counseling and group parenting class, participation in weekly visits, passes, and phone calls, agreement and adherence to policy and guidelines for program duration and support of their child's healing.  

In these ways, the entire family works together to make positive changes so the transition back is into a home of reconciliation and healing. Many parents discover that as their teen settles in to their program, they needed healing, too.


Do I have to be a Christian to enroll in Hope Harbor?

Hope Harbor is an interdenominational, Christ-centered and biblically based ministry committed to following Jesus in all we do. We are not affiliated with any denomination, we are simply Christian.  

All healing is from a biblical perspective; our counseling, spiritual growth, life skills and education include Christian spiritual growth initiatives. We attend various local churches and hold Chapel on site. We weave prayer and devotions through our daily activities and our school curriculum is Accelerated Christian Education.  

Jesus is central to all we do.  He is the focus in the lives of our staff and we strive to walk it out in a genuine way.  

Residents do not need to be Christian to enroll in our program.   We will support a resident's decision to make a saving declaration of faith in Jesus Christ during their program and we will help them to further cultivate that relationship when they make that choice.  Families seeking services from Hope Harbor are seeking a faith-based, Christian program, and most have some history as Christian.

Statement of Faith

FAQ: Hope Harbor Internships and Volunteers

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I have to get involved! Do you accept interns?

Yes, we accept interns in a volunteer (unpaid) capacity to students from many educational areas.  Find out more through the link below:

More About Internships

I want to get involved! How can I volunteer?

Volunteers pour into this ministry from many backgrounds, professions and interests, demonstrating the love of Christ and the fruit of the Spirit in the lives of our teens. Complete the Volunteer Interest Form to get started:

More about volunteering

FAQ: Hope Harbor Program

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What is Hope Harbor?

We are a Christian ministry full of God’s hope, forgiveness and grace, with a loving staff committed to restoring families.  

We are licensed by MN Department of Human Services as a Residential Group Home, Children's Residential Facility. 

We are a 501 C3 non-profit organization that receives no government funding and relies on tuition and private donations to cover all operating costs.   

More about funding

Is the Hope really on the Harbor?

Nope.  The Hope is actually on Jesus Christ alone.  

In the Land of 10,000 Lakes, Hope Harbor is not located near any.  Our name, Hope Harbor, wasn't by accident though.   

Harbor, as a noun, is a place to find shelter and protection from rough waters, a place of security and comfort. Hope Harbor is a place of refuge for those in the midst of the rough waters of life. We aim to bring security and comfort through our Comforter, the Holy Spirit, to those in need.

Harbor, as a verb, means to give home or shelter to, or to keep in one’s mind. We all harbor something in our mind. Too often, it brings destruction, pain, and unrest as the enemy of our soul condemns us. At Hope Harbor, our staff guides residents and families to harbor the hope of Jesus Christ, the Healer, in their hearts.  He is so good to us!

Do you offer non-residential counseling?

Hope Harbor does not offer non residential counseling at this time.  Feel free to contact us for area referrals. 

What is your Residential Program?

With 24/7 care, both Hope Harbor locations that are currently operational have room for six girls.  Our program duration is 12-15 months, with an average program completion of about one year

Residents move through five phases of restoration that include participation in individual, group and family biblical counseling, attendance in on-site school five days a week year-round, learning life skills, and participation in spiritual growth initiatives that may cultivate a relationship with Jesus Christ. 

Hope Harbor is not a take-down or restraint facility, a lock-up facility, kid jail, being "sent away," emergency placement, a quick fix or punishment. 

Hope Harbor is a safe, voluntary long-term program where teens can discover who they are in Christ, to promote lasting healing they can lean on for years to come.

Can I see my friends while I'm in the program?

Admission to Hope Harbor is a unique, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for teens to focus on themselves and their needs. With room for only six girls at a time, we know that the Lord hand-picks each girl and her family to receive what He has for them here.  A year may seem like a lot now, but it is just a moment. 

With all the pressures teens face today, it would be unfair to include the added pressure of outside peer influence. We have seen girls thrive best by putting those influences on hold to focus on what truly matters. 

In order to allow for our residents to get the most out of their time with us, they will not have romantic relationships or contact with friends until they are ready to transition home at program end.

What about my phone and my social media?!?

Both will be there when you are finished with the program, most likely.  We are confident that the teens in our program are able to meet the challenge of living without social media, cell phones, boyfriends, best friends or even man's best friend. 

In fact, many of our residents find immense relief from the pressure and obligation that comes with these things, and discover they don't really miss them at all. 

Except for maybe their dog. Many of them do miss their dogs (but sometimes your parents can bring your dog for a visit).