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Therapeutic Residential Treatment

TCI is a high-end, 48-bed, residential facility, licensed by DCFS in the State of Illinois and accredited by CARF. TCI provides an intensive, 24-hour therapeutic treatment environment for young men from the ages of 12-19. Through milieu therapy, we promote a community-based, systematic approach that focuses on positive behavior interactions, interventions and supports within the ​parameters of a safe, sec​ure and structured milieu environment. Within our milieu environment, our goal is to build self-esteem, teach individual accountability as well as appropriate coping, social and problem-solving skills so that our youth gain the tools necessary to interact appropriately with others in various social settings. Through Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), our clinicians take a goal-oriented approach at turning previously held maladaptive and distorted thoughts, undesirable feelings and responses, and inappropriate behaviors into those that are more befitting allowing our youth to successfully execute their environment now and in their future endeavors.

Our Residential Units

Transitional Center is the largest 24/7 residential treatment program in the Southern Illinois Region serving adolescent males and their families coming to us from the entire state of Illinois. We currently have 5 residential units including the Cardinals, Billikens, Grizzlies, Rams and a separate newly added Cottage.  All youth have their own private rooms on their unit.


Our Goal for all Youth

Our goal through treatment ​is to teach youth to actively engage in healthy thought processes and become aware of negative and inaccurate thinking so that challenging situations are viewed more clearly.  In addition, youth “re-frame” their reactions and learn coping skills and strategies to deal with stress, cope with complicated relationships, deal with grief and trauma, and face many other common life challenges. 

Our Story

Transitional Center Inc. was developed out of an intense need for programming that combines transitioning and therapeutic programming for youth having mental and acute behavioral health challenges that have often manifested into unmanageable, destructive and highly inappropriate behaviors. As a result, youth are often expelled, inappropriately placed, or placed in programs that only meet part of the youth’s needs. Research and statistics indicate that when youth experience these types of experiences eventually culminating a life of hopelessness, starting with drop out or falling through the cracks, and leading to a bleak future, a cycle of failure, homelessness and criminal behavior. Transitional Center Inc. (TCI) started its operations in 1999 at St. Mary’s Hospital for adolescent males ranging in age from 12-19 years of age.

TCI started as a (12) twelve-bed, residential facility. However, as the need for in-state programming increased, TCI requested a modification to our DCFS license to move our location to Centreville and to increase our occupancy. Our license was modified on 2 additional occasions and we now currently operate a 48-bed residential campus in Centreville, IL, still serving only adolescent males in need of intensive and extensive behavioral and psychotherapy treatment. Our main center houses 40 youth and our single cottage has 8 youth, for a total of 48 youth.

In order to provide academic programming, continuity of care and a streamlined process for providing services at the residential center, in 2007, planning for school operations began. In less than a year’s time, JTC Academy opened and was housed at the residential facility in the south wing of the building as an alternative educational placement for youth needing non-public special education services. JTC Academy serviced current residential youth but in a short period of time, the academy began receiving requests for placements by District 189 for non-residential special education youth. As JTC Academy began to accept non-residential students into the school program, the school program grew exponentially requiring a much larger off-site location to accommodate this increased population of youth.

The first off-site location for JTC Academy was the Jackie Joyner-Kersee Center. The academy rented space and remained at this location for about 1 school year until renovations began at the center requiring JTC Academy to relocate. At this time, JTC Academy rented the Attucks School Building from District 189. After a couple years at Attucks, District 189 began placing some of their unused school buildings up for bid. JTC Academy immediately embraced this opportunity, bid on and purchased the Brown School at 4850 Market St. in Centreville, Illinois, which became and is now JTC Academy West. A few years later, JTC Academy acquired the Center for Children with Behavioral Disorders (CCBD) which is now JTC East.

Today, JTC Academy services several school districts within a 35-40-minute radius of JTC Academy. Youth having IEPs from over 10 school districts in the area needing non-public special education programming are accepted annually into the program. JTC Academy accommodates all courses and curriculum required by the Illinois State Board of Education for all youth in grades K-12 while offering that important therapeutic component concurrently. As a result of moving off-site, the school program became disjointed from TCI and now operates as a separate, independent, not for profit, private entity through the Illinois State Board of Education. However, nearly half of all TCI youth attend JTC Academy due to the youth having an IEP requiring a private therapeutic day school.

The Therapeutic Team here at Transitional Center Inc. recognizes the importance and therapeutic value of providing a safe, non-judgmental, and confidential environment where unconditional regard, empathy, patience, and compassion are cornerstone. We employ a very youth-centered, strength-based approach with all youth. Therapy is intended to help youth assess their current situation, explore their innermost thoughts, feelings, and fears, develop effective coping strategies, identify obstacles and impediments, identify and define their life’s purpose, and find resolution to unresolved issues related to abuse, abandonment, grief, and loss. By providing ongoing individualized treatment to each of our youth, we can address the identified problem areas while simultaneously monitoring educational and interpersonal progress as well.

CARF Accreditati​on

Tr​ansitional Center has received

a CARF Three-Year Accreditation for the ​following:

Child and Youth Services

What does that mean for you?

Persons served and their families look for organizations that are accredited as a sign of quality when looking for services.

Accreditation is evidence to persons served that an organization has demonstrated its commitment to encouraging feedback, continuously improving services, enhancing performance, and managing risk.

Persons served and their families can be confident that services will be focused on their unique needs.

What is CARF?

CARF International is an independent, nonprofit accreditor of health and human services providers in the areas of Aging Services, Behavioral Health, Child and Youth Services, Durable Medical Equipment, Employment and Community Services, Medical Rehabilitation, Opioid Treatment Programs, and Vision Rehabilitation Services. 

CARF assists service providers in improving the quality of their services by applying sets of quality standards during an on-site survey.

When a service or program is CARF accredited, it means it has undergone an in-depth review of its services and demonstrated substantial conformance to the CARF standards during the on-site survey. The service or program has demonstrated its commitment to delivering quality services that focus on your needs and preferences.

For more information about CARF International, the standards, or the survey process, visit

TCI Provides Exceptional Services

On-Site School

JTC Academy provides programs and services that support Transitional Center Youth in providing special education and related services to students with disabilities. Targeted areas for services and supports include accessible instructional materials, assistive technology, curriculum access and alignment, dropout prevention, family engagement, least restrictive environment, positive behavior supports, and transitional services.  

Services Provided at School

Services that are specific to the individual student’s IEP include the following:

  • Speech and Language Therapy
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Group and Individual Counseling
  • Medication Therapy through the best Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist in the State of Illinois and prescribes and monitors youth medications
  • Full time Nurse that administers and monitors youth medications, performs first aid  and serves as the very first consult for all injuries and illnesses
  • PBIS Consultant

Case Managment

• Provide individual and group life skills according to individualized treatment plans and in accordance with professional standards

• Make treatment and social service referrals to appropriate agencies that support client goals

• Create, maintain, and submit accurate records and documents in a timely manner

• Maintain current knowledge of assessment and treatment techniques, criminal justice systems, and community resources using in-service training, seminars, workshops, and publications

Individual, Group and Family Therapy

Residential Therapists, also referred to as Counselor, work with individuals, families, and groups to address and treat mental and emotional disorders and to promote mental health. They are trained in a variety of therapeutic techniques used to address issues such as depression, anxiety, addiction and substance abuse, suicidal impulses, stress, trauma, low self-esteem, and grief. Counselors also help with job and career concerns, educational decisions, mental and emotional health issues, and relationship problems. In addition, they may be involved in community outreach, advocacy, and mediation activities. TCI Counselors often work closely with other mental health specialists, such as psychiatrists, psychologists, clinical social workers, psychiatric nurses, and other school counselors.

What our customers are saying

"I never could have made it without the staff at TCI. They truly care."

"TCI is the "real deal" at working with youth."