Welcome to Penrith Farms

Why Penrith Farms?

Independently Owned

A non-corporate family owned business with 30 years experience in helping young adults & changing lives.

Co-Educational

Our only requirement for applicants is that they are over 18 years old.

Personalised Program

Everybody is different & we do not have a "playbook". What works for one doesn't always work for the other.

Recent Posts


Failure to Launch Therapy isn’t Always Therapy

What is failure to launch therapy? It is not always your “traditional” sit-down therapy with a therapist. Failure to launch syndrome is not a DSM diagnosis but psychologists recognize it. You should start with a therapist to rule out underlying mental health conditions. This is because mental health conditions, if…

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What is a Life Skills Program?

What is a Life Skills Program?  This is a common question because “life skills” is very non-descriptive.  The concept of Life Skills is a generic term with a range of various skills underneath its umbrella.  Life skills are the skills that help you face the challenges of life.  They are…

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What is a Failure to Launch Syndrome?

Failure to launch syndrome is the inability to transition into adulthood. Along with adulthood comes independent living. Every year more and more young adults lack the necessary life skills to make this transition. This lack of skills can be due to a lack of desire or preparation to be independent…

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Failure to Launch Program

Penrith Farms is a failure to launch program in Washington State.  We transition young adults into adulthood and independent living.  As a working farm, we approach failure to launch as an issue of emotional growth and personal habits.  So our goal is to work with students in altering bad habits and in improving resilience.  The approach we use is different from the clinical model used at a typical failure to launch program.  When students come to our program we involve them in real world situations on a working farm.  Penrith Farms also offers a home-like environment for interaction between students and staff.  This makes it safe for students to make mistakes and learn from them.

Many of our students arrive with a distrust for therapists and treatment facilities.  That is why counseling at Penrith Farms happens in real time.  Our counseling takes place in the moment as situations develop.  Students at Penrith Farms develop instant awareness of their behavior and emotions.  We provide coaching to help young adults recognize and work through their emotions.  From this experience, students will learn essential life skills necessary for independent living.  We still offer traditional therapy sessions to students that need it.  Transportation to referred psychiatrists provided as necessary.

Failure to Launch Program vs Wilderness Therapy

Much of our approach is like that of a Wilderness Therapy Program but with some key differences.  Wilderness Therapy Programs work as follows:

“By exposing patients to interpersonal problems, therapy and group activities in an unfamiliar context away from home, wilderness therapy encourages the development of healthy self-esteem and social skills. Encountering familiar problems in an unfamiliar context may shed new light on existing problems. By solving the natural challenges posed by a wilderness environment, patients may build up courage to face real-world problems on their own. Additionally, physical activity alone may improve physical and mental health.” https://en.wikipedia.org

Of course that is in theory and many Wilderness Therapy Programs have problems:

“There is also controversy over whether parents should be allowed make their child attend a wilderness therapy program by force, as is often the case. Apart from the thousands spent on the actual program (around $500/day), some parents pay a teen escort company thousands to ensure their child gets to the program by any means necessary, without the child’s consent or foreknowledge. Generally the “transfer” occurs at night, when children are disoriented. Due to the trauma and alleged harm reported by former wilderness program residents who have been forcibly escorted into placement, psychologists have heavily criticized this approach as inappropriate, and grossly inconsistent with establishing the necessary trust required for building a therapeutic relationship between youth and providers.[19]https://en.wikipedia.org

The Penrith Difference: Communication, Cooperation, and Completion

Some students at Penrith Farms Failure to Launch Program transfer from Wilderness Programs.  Penrith Farms is different because student attendance is always voluntary (unless court ordered). We are an open campus.   Students can walk off the farm and our policy is to engage the student but not stop them.  Developing a relationship with meaningful engagement requires trust.  But compulsion causes a loss of trust.  Another major difference is Penrith Farms is approximately $200/day not $500/day.

Penrith Farms fosters trust and open communication between staff and students.  We challenge troubled young adults to develop the skills to transition into adulthood.  The connections we establish with students helps them communicate and cooperate with others.  This will allow them to complete their commitments. We encourage students to express themselves.   They also learn to work in a team, embrace natural consequences, and socialize.

Penrith Farms is a reflection of the challenges young adults face as adults.  We provide an environment where it is safe to make mistakes.  With that comes the expectation to learn to make better choices.  The relationships we build at our failure to launch program are life long.  All our past students and families remain in contact with us.  These relationships will serve them throughout their lives.

A Failure to Launch Program for Everyone

We work with young adults over the age of 18. We define young adulthood as the transitional period between adolescence and adulthood.  Generally speaking, we define adulthood as having an education, a career, and a family.  There is no distinct dividing line between adolescence and adulthood anymore.  Thus Penrith Farms Young Adult Transitional Living Program works with all age groups.

Troubled young adults at risk of falling behind usually have emotional problems (like depression).  Sometimes there may be substance abuse issues, or participation in criminal behaviour.  There may also be a lack of interest in school and lack of financial independence.  They may just have a sense of entitlement.  But none of these factors have to be present or one or more may be present.  The point is they are at risk of not transitioning into adulthood.  This tends to leave them reliant upon their family.

Our Failure to Launch Program will transition students into adulthood and independent living.  They learn honest and direct communication. They engage in real relationships, and learn the value of education and hard work. With any luck, they gain an appreciation for family and friends, and how fortunate they are. All this learned on a working farm in a home-like environment, designed to bring out the best in everyone.  At the same time, providing the support young adults need to be a successful.  Most young adults that are at risk and failing to launch need this experience be successful in life.

Contact Us for Admissions to our Failure to Launch Program & to Learn More About Us Today!