Youth & Shelter Services, Inc. Seven-12 House

Youth & Shelter Services

Youth & Shelter Services provides treatment programs for adolescents with substance abuse issues and co-occurring mental health conditions. Treatment at YSS is evidence-based and includes counseling, intervention, and education to promote personal responsibility and long-term recovery. YSS also provides support services for patients’ families and loved ones, and encourages family involvement in the recovery process.


As a provider of programs that help adolescents and their families deal with issues of sexual abuse, homelessness, domestic violence, and substance abuse, Youth & Shelter Services, Inc. (YSS) serves about 8,000 young Iowans per year. The Seven-12 House, which is based in the city of Ames about 30 miles north of Des Moines, offers residential treatment for teenage girls, including those with co-occurring substance abuse and mental health disorders. Medically-assisted detox services are not available on-site.


Youth & Shelter Services, Inc. (YSS) follows a treatment methodology that is based on the 12-step and evidence-based, methodologies. It includes a minimum of 50 hours of therapeutic and life skills counseling per week. In particular, the program addresses gender-specific factors related to addiction. The program for young women helps develop self-respect, healthy relationships, and coping skills. The highly-structured program also addresses trauma, relapse prevention, and includes AA and/or NA meeting attendance. Treatment typically lasts up to 90 days.

YSS also focuses and developing a holistic recovery through physical reconditioning using recreational therapies. Aside from counseling, the daily schedule also allows for wellness activities such as cycling, basketball, and running. Clients that need educational support can participate in on-site education or G.E.D preparation with a certified teacher. Clients are expected to complete daily chores as a way of combining physical therapy with vocational and sober living skills.

For teens with co-occurring mental health conditions, psychiatric evaluations and medication management can be accessed through this facility. YSS views family involvement as an important part of the recovery process. Family members are encouraged to be involved in the recovery process through multidimensional family therapy (MDFT).

In terms of aftercare, clients can access weekly educational groups during and after treatment that address chemical dependency, bullying, spirituality, values, and communication among other life skills. These classes can be used to maintain sober living skills and lifestyles after treatment is completed.


The treatment team at Youth & Shelter Services, Inc. includes internationally certified alcohol and drug counselors, as well as a licensed marriage and family therapist. Other staff members help manage daily activities using their experience in recovery programs and specific areas. Clients will interact with a variety of staff members on a daily basis that can help them manage their recovery.


Youth & Shelter Services, Inc.’s Seven-12 House is a 15-bed facility. It is set in a two-story home along a tree-lined residential street. Residents stay in private rooms while using common areas for treatments. Residents are not allowed to bring cell phones or any other type of electronic device. Other personal items are discouraged to allow clients to focus on their recovery.


While there were no reviews from alumni of Seven-12 House at the time of this writing, three loved ones reported negative experiences regarding their friend’s and family members’ experiences.

The loved ones were unhappy with the condition of the facility, the treatment from staff members, and the overall program. “The house smells like urine,” B.S. wrote. B.D.D. added that “My child received NO professional counseling beyond drug counseling.” Parent Todd agreed that the facility was “Poorly ran, unsupervised and our daughter’s behavior was worse when she got out. They allow too much unsupervised interaction with other patients.” He gave the facility just one out of five stars for its level of staff support and its leadership, as well as its overall treatment effectiveness.


Currently, no staff members have contributed reviews to However, reviews on Glassdoor and Indeed indicate mixed feedback.

On Glassdoor, Youth & Shelter Services has an average rating of 3.3 out of five stars based on eight reviews, many of which came from those who work in the two addiction facilities. [1] While staff generally found working with clients at YSS rewarding, several commented on issues with management. “The management is very disorganized and unprofessional,” an anonymous current employee wrote to Glassdoor. A former employee wrote: “poor training, no support from co-workers or supervisors, low compensation, cultural insensitivity all around, and overall negative work climate.”

This feedback was echoed in reviews on Indeed, where the facility earned 3.9 out of five stars based on seven reviews to date. [2] In a representative review, one former employee wrote: “Being able to leave your work at work is a must for this job. It is a rewarding job, doing needed work, but you need to expect that the youth who say they appreciate you one day may hate you the next. Also, with multiple parties involved (including government) there is a lot to learn. I recommend volunteering before applying.”


Youth & Shelter Services, Inc. accepts self-pay, Medicaid, and many private insurance plans. The facility also offers a payment plan with monthly installments for those that need increased flexibility in paying the costs of the recovery program. Co-pays and self-pay payments may be made using credit cards, cash, and checks.


Youth & Shelter Services, Inc. Seven-12 House Reviews

I dont know whats up with everyone hating on this place. the people you know in there sound to me like theyre exaggerating and lying about the place. I was here almost 9 years ago at age 16....I was there for 3 months and when I was able to go home I DIDNT WANT TO! I wanted to stay. The staff were like family to me and so were the other girls there. I still talk to a few staff members and mostly every single girl that I was there with. I have them all on facebook as well and we all stay up to date on eachothers life. I was locked up in alot of places as a kid and I would have chosen this place 100x over if i had a choice everytime. 712 will always hold a special place in my heart!
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  • Literally saved my life. Forever grateful.
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  • Program saved my life. Grateful to the staff and YSS for believing in me more than I believed in myself.
    My girlfriend is currently attending this place for her mental health. This is a place for drug addicts, not mental health. She was very open to coming thinking she would get help and be better but then she got there and now she's getting punished. I just received a letter from her and I'm in tears. She has to wake up by 6:30 and has to be downstairs by 7:30 or else they get an hour of community service. They can't use public restrooms. Cant use the phone for the first 10 days. They barley let you use the phone ever. The house smells like urine. Her mom said they are basically making it feel like they own her own child! And there's nothing she can do because she singed a contract. They had to pay thousands of dollars to get her in but the guy said they had to pay him that day or there wasn't going to be any rooms available so they did. They go there and there was only 2 girls there.... so they lied. Bacially bottom line is all they want is your money, don't send your child here unless you want to severely punish them. This is a place for EXTREME drug addicts. It's sad how this place was reccomended by a mental health physician.
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  • YES claims to be a dual-diagnosis facility. Please, before you admit your child have that confirmed. My child received NO professional counseling beyond drug counseling. (Drug addiction counseling is not a is a program a person attends for certifcation.) After 88 days...the staff told me I had to come get my child because they couldn't "handle" him. He was not allowed to graduatethe program and was told he could never come back...not even to their end of summer party. The school teacher at the facility told me he was saddened for my child because he didn't deserve what they were doing. He is a good old who followed the rules but was kicked to the curb like garbage. (He completed 2 full high school classes in 2 weeks.) The problem was is the facility did not have true dual diagnosis treatment and I was lied to about that...they never had him start therapy for PTSD, anxiety disorder, and his MDD. Thankfully, this was 5 years ago and he is now a healthy adult, in therapy on his own, drug free, and a shift superior at a great restaurant. We have to place so fast as a parent to save our children that we don't get the opportunity to really research. I reported these concerns to our insurance company...that helped us find placement, and they began reseaching them for insurance recertification. If you need a placement, don't choose YSS.
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    Poorly ran, unsupervised and our daughter's behavior was worse when she got out. They allow too much unsupervised interaction with other patients. They seemed more interested in the state money than our daughter. They guided us in getting aid we shouldn't of had.