Welcome to Wayside Waltham!
For many years, Wayside’s Waltham site has been the “home” to a variety of staff providing a range of clinical services. Between the array of In-Home Family-Based services and Outpatient Therapy services offered, the program site has housed staff available to meet a range of needs for community members. For example, Wayside’s In-Home services provide clinical, practical, and supportive services to families—in their natural environments—and who need more than traditional Outpatient therapy. Working in partnership with a Wayside Clinician and/or Youth & Family Support Worker, families develop a set of treatment goals as well as a plan to address these goals. Treatment plans may include elements such as individual therapy, family therapy, skills-training, care coordination, and help connecting family members to community resources. The teams work closely with the family to develop a customized plan. Wayside’s Outpatient Services provide somewhat less intensive office or school-based clinical services to individuals—again via a customized “plan” developed in partnership with youth and their families.
Up until six months ago, Wayside’s Waltham-based programs were housed in the same office space they have occupied for well over 30 years. With the small building at 118 Central Street in Waltham having gone through a wide variety of physical restructuring (putting up walls, taking down walls, reconfiguring small spaces, etc.) it had become clear that this continuously growing set of programs would need much expanded office space. As noted by Vice President, Andrea Salzman—who was originally hired as a clinician in the HomeBase Program located at the Waltham site—“When I was hired as a clinician, the program expanded from 5 to 8 staff. Now, there are over 45 staff working within that program site alone.” With the continuously growing community need for these types of services, it was apparent that these programs would need expanded office space in order to ensure access for the growing numbers of families to these critical services. Literally around the corner, a newly developed building with commercial space on the first floor and apartment complexes on the top floors came to life. Wayside eagerly snatched the first two commercial space suites, did some painting and outfitted the space to meet its counseling needs. Thus, the new Wayside office at 431 River Street,Waltham, MA was born.
When you walk through the doors, you are greeted by the smell of fresh paint (something I find oddly soothing), a bright reception area and a welcoming space. The receptionist is eager to greet children and their parents arriving for their Outpatient appointments with a friendly and supportive welcome.
All of the counseling rooms in the new space are outfitted with updated materials and sensory toys used for therapeutic purposes, rocking chairs and comfortable seating to provide the most relaxing and engaging atmosphere for the clients—most of whom are children.
A parent whose family has used Wayside Waltham’s services Wayside Family-Based Services had this to say: “I found Wayside when my son was three years old and recently diagnosed with physical, developmental and mental health issues. They became our partners, constantly supportive and helpful at all times of the day and night. Wayside’s comprehensive programs allowed us to keep our son at home.” This parent’s comment is a testament to the work of our clinicians and staff, which works every day to meet the needs of their clients and find the right plan to help each individual family.
The staff now has enough space to work freely and openly. Long gone are the days of 5 staff members crammed into one tiny office. The new office suite features an open layout that provides plenty of room for leg-stretching, gathering those Fitbit steps, and of course, proactively working.
Wayside’s Community-Based services are family-centered. For example, while the “client” may be a child who has been identified as meeting the criteria for severe emotional disturbance by virtue of his/her symptoms, we understand that the whole family needs support. We want to help families stay together harmoniously and safely.
Our services are also strengths-based, meaning that, in order to address the challenging issues facing families, we first must identify and draw upon the strengths each member already has. These strengths are the key foundation towards helping families overcome challenges and develop successful outcomes.
We are excited about the newly developed space and the increased access to services for families that it affords us in this community!