Who is a good fit?

Elpida is a therapeutic community of 4 independent-living residences in San Rafael and Novato, serving adults between ages 18 and 75 with serious mental illness. We do not offer services for adolescents or children.

Elpida is a long-term residential treatment program. Residents stay a minimum of 6 months. Many people have chosen to make our community their long-term home - some residents have lived in their homes for over 15 years.

Elpida's expertise is chronic mental health conditions, such as schizophrenia spectrum disorders and mood and anxiety disorders. We do not provide substance dependency or co-occurring disorder treatment, eating disorder treatment, dementia/memory care, or skilled nursing.

Individuals with dementia, developmental disability, or medical illness in need of skilled care are better served in a setting that can meet their unique needs. 

Our residents are not at immediate risk of harm to themselves or others, and do not have active challenges with risky impulse control or self-harming behavior. Many residents come to us from inpatient or partial hospitalization programs after a period of stabilization.

Elpida believes medications can support people to achieve their treatment goals. We ask that residents be committed to taking their medications as prescribed. Daily medications can be observed, but residents must be able to hold and take their medications independently. We happily work with families to connect with appropriate doctors or seek second opinions. 

Elpida has a non-substance use policy. We do not allow use of alcohol, medical or recreational marijuana, or illicit substances in our program. We support residents to make use of recovery models and groups, as needed. Many of our residents use caffeine, nicotine, and food for self-soothing - we use harm reduction strategies in support of wellness goals.

Our homes are non-smoking. Residents may smoke in designated locations on the property, but smoking is never allowed in the homes or non-designated areas. If residents are not able to manage their smoking safely, staff may hold and distribute their cigarettes under safe conditions. 

Our primary goal is a safe environment for personal growth. Physical, verbal, emotional abuse or behaviors that jeopardize the safety of other residents cannot be tolerated and may result in eviction.

If the treatment team assesses that the resident is not safe or thriving at Elpida, we will provide the individual and caregivers with recommendations for a more appropriate treatment setting.

Elpida uses best practices in evidence-based interventions for supporting wellness of mind, body, and spirit. Adjunct interventions such as spiritual counseling, body work, nutritional counseling, specific issue-therapy groups, gym memberships are frequently sought out by individual residents, but not included in our program.


What is the program like day-to-day?

Each resident works with staff to make and implement an individualized treatment plan. Staff work with a team of people – family, psychiatrists, psychotherapists, doctors, AA sponsors,  conservators/payees – to contribute to and support that plan. After a few months, residents have a treatment conference with the team to re-calibrate the plan to best meet the resident's needs. 

Weekly psychotherapy and attendance at all groups and activities is an essential part of our treatment program. Elpida residents attend weekly individual psychotherapy, symptom management, life skills, expressive arts, and yoga groups. On a daily basis, residents enjoy morning exercise and evening stress management/mindfulness groups. We all participate in monthly community outings, such as a day at the Marine Mammal Center, Stinson Beach, or museums in Golden Gate Park. 

Elpida is a structured independent-living program, with staff available between 9 a.m. - 11 p.m., with no holding of medications or money. We recommend that residents with impulse control issues receive money in small weekly amounts, or work with a payee. Residents are free to come and go during non-program times. Residents have 2 days a week and weekends free to pursue volunteering, school, employment, or outside activities.

All of our residents are expected to participate in meal planning and preparation, house meetings, completing a weekly household chore, and being a mindful member of a shared household. Care managers are at the homes to provide practical and emotional support, case management, and assist with coordination of appointments and activities. 

Our homes are mixed-gender, and most residents have a private room.


How do I Pay?

Elpida is a private-pay program. Private insurance, MediCare, and MediCal do not reimburse or pay for our residential and supportive services. 

Elpida provides 2 levels of care. A higher level of support where staff are present from 9 a.m. - 11 p.m. on weekdays and 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. on weekends. We also have a more independent level of care where staff are present from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. during the week. We have no overnight staff. Fees include a furnished room; 3 meals a day; individual psychotherapy; skills groups, activities & outings; and case management.

Elpida asks residents to sign a lease for a minimum 6-month stay. This is essential for residents to get settled and for care managers to help residents develop and pursue a treatment plan. If residents chose to leave before that time, their room will be remain available for them for the remainder of their 6-month lease term. 

Elpida does accept vouchers from those enrolled through the Housing Choice Voucher Program, known as Section 8, administered by Marin Housing Authority. Details on qualifying and applying for that program are available at their website (https://www.marinhousing.org/housing-choice-voucher.html).

Many of our residents apply for and receive benefits through Social Security. Switching benefits from out-of-county to Marin provides access to county services, such as Marin Community Clinics (http://www.marinclinic.org/) and Buckelew Employment Services (http://www.buckelew.org/programs/employment.html).


Next Steps?

Please review this document to see if Elpida is a fit with your resources and needs. 

You are welcome to call Clinical Director, Dr Kristin Felch @ 415. 419-2400 x 11 with additional questions and to inquire about availability.

Dr. Felch will connect you with one of our Care Managers for a tour and intake interview.

If after the interview, all parties agree the program is appropriate and there is a current opening, we can plan a date for move-in.