Residential Treatment

Imagine for a moment that you are 10 years old and arrive to the front steps of St. Joseph Children’s Home. The large archway coupled with the heavy weight of the front door gives you pause as this strange place becomes the 12th place you’ve lived. After being removed from your parents due to abuse and neglect, you’ve moved between multiple foster homes and treatment centers for the past few years. You are confused and feel helpless about your situation because you don’t know how to make it any better. You think that the only reason you’re here is because you’re a “bad kid” who doesn’t deserve a family. So why should St. Joe’s be any different from the other places you’ve lived?

That is how every child feels when they first arrive to St. Joe’s. Each child who lives at St. Joe’s today has experienced multiple forms of trauma including but not limited to homelessness, malnutrition, emotional abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect. Once removed from their family, the child enters state’s custody and is placed in either a relative’s home, a hospital, or is referred to the foster care system while their case is being investigated.

“St. Joe's made me feel like my life was worth living. That no matter how much I was struggling, I was loved and cared for. It will always be my 'home.'``

—SJ Kid

“Was my home for a little while as a child and I remember loving it. I was well loved and cared for. Actually wished as a child that a certain worker was my mother.”

—SJ Kid


We have the capacity to serve 48 children at a time including girls and boys, ages 6-15, who are in crisis.


Every Child is Good & Worthy of Love

When a child first arrives to St. Joe’s, they have been referred by the state for residential treatment and often arrive with nothing but the shirt on their backs. Usually, past traumas make it difficult for these child survivors to bond and be successful in a family environment. They do not trust adults and fear abandonment. Worse yet, they have experienced abuse or neglect from the adults whom they trusted the most.

At St. Joe’s, we believe that every child is good and worthy of love. Our goal is to provide children with the necessary tools they need to be successful in a family. Through trauma-informed care, individualized treatment plans, intensive therapy, education, therapeutic activities and a home-like environment, children can begin the healing process. It is our mission to provide them with the coping and life skills to move past their trauma and look forward to a brighter future. On average, children live at St. Joe’s for about one year before transitioning into a home. Majority of St. Joe’s kids transition into a foster family or pre-adoptive home, while almost 25% return to their parent or relative.

St. Joe’s becomes an extended family for many residents and it is common for a child to say, “For the first time, I feel safe.” The overall goal of the residential treatment program is to prepare the children to be in a home again and our outcomes reflect that when a child leaves St. Joe’s, they join a safe and loving family.


Paige Cook

LCSW, Lead Residential Therapist


St. Joseph Children’s Home
2823 Frankfort Avenue
Louisville, KY 40206
(502) 893-0241
(877) 893-0241