Caron's flagship center in Pennsylvania has offered an uncompromising 12-step therapy program for almost 50 years, and many customers credit it with giving them the drive they required to alter their life. (While it lacks the luxury of the poshest rehab facilities, Caron has the key ingredient: a world-class team that provides rigor combined with compassion in equal proportion.) Caron's customers are predominantly middle class and white, but there is usually a mix with over 200 occupants at any given moment. Everything from group sessions to mealtime to Sunday worship is rigidly separated between men and women. There are also distinct programs for young people under the age of 25, which have more restrictions than the usual adult courses. The most prevalent problem among middle-aged individuals is alcoholism, while heroin and other narcotics are responsible for a large number of the younger generations. A high percentage of patients reside for one month, although a significant proportion stays for four months.
The lodgings are not the most opulent, more akin to student dorms than anything else is, but they are usually well-kept and have enough of a rather pleasant outdoor area. Everyone in primary care has one or two housemates; however, extended care gives one a chance to have a private room. Even though a rotation of small chores is necessary, no one seems to find them burdensome. Keeping their room immaculate, according to one alum, "aided with staying humble."
Caron's meals are remarkably well-reviewed nowadays, given the size of the enterprise. Residents describe the eating facility as a high-end university cafeteria with various entrée options at each mealtime. According to Caron Pennsylvania reviews, the cuisine is generally healthful, with the salad bar being a particular favorite. For anyone who is not as health-conscious, pizza is always offered for lunch, and frozen yogurt, a popular dessert option. Snacks like cereals and fruits are provided all day, and non-decaf coffee has lately been adopted, but it is strictly controlled. Weight gain is common among residents, which can or cannot be a good thing.
Caron's days are structured and have a routine to them, with little gaps between sessions, while there is time for introspection and step practice in the evenings. Offsite possibilities are nearly non-existent for the first month. Still, residents can attend weekly yoga sessions, massages, and acupuncture, on campus, as well as 35 minutes at the gymnasium three times per week. One former resident complained that private appointments were occasionally scheduled simultaneously as group exercise time, which was inconvenient. Weekends, on the other hand, are often more laid-back. Those who reside for more than a month are entitled to go fishing, camping, or hiking, as well as the use of the community swimming pool and attendance at off-campus 12-step meetings.
In sum, Caron's method may be too restricting for certain clients, and they may want substitutes to 12-step. However, most people view it as a positive experience that helped them remain sober, owing to a good follow-up program and a genuine interest in the clients' rehabilitation.