HSI History

Horizon Services, Inc. (HSI) was proud to be celebrating its 35th Anniversary in 2009. For the past 35 years HSI has been a leader in several Northern California counties where it has been providing alcohol and drug treatment, recovery and prevention services. Over the years these services have grown to include those with a co-occurring mental illness and physical disabilities, to welcome people of all sexual orientations and to work to create environments that are safe and healthy for all members of the community.

Alameda County is proud to be the county that planted the seed that help make this Agency grow into the multi-service, multi-county agency it is today. HSI opened its first program 35 years ago with a $17,500 contract from Alameda County to establish sober living support services for men re-entering the work force. Currently HSI operates eight programs in Alameda, San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties.

In 1980 HSI opened its women only Chrysalis program in Oakland, CA. At the time there were no women only programs available in the County so women were forced to use treatment programs designed by men for men. Today Chrysalis provides 27 beds with a program staffed by women designed specifically to meet women’s needs.

In 1981, seeing the continuing need for residential treatment services in Alameda County, HSI developed and opened Cronin House for men and women. Today Cronin is an integral part of the County services and provides 40 beds for an average stay of 45 days.

In 1986 Keith Lewis became the Executive Director of HSI. Under his leadership the last 22 years, HSI has continued to grow. He brought to the Agency extensive knowledge and experience with grassroots crisis intervention, detoxification in a social model settings and effective treatment and referral strategies. He also brought with him HSI’s first detoxification program, Palm Avenue Detox in San Mateo, CA. Palm Avenue currently provides 15 beds serving men and women in San Mateo County.

In 1989, fueled by the beliefs that environmental prevention strategies were both a valuable and scarce component in the community, HSI, with funding from Alameda County, created HSI’s first prevention program, CommPre. CommPre this year in 2009 celebrated its 20th Anniversary as part of HSI. Two of the current issues being addressed are the access of alcohol, tobacco and marijuana to youth in local communities and a Promotion, Policy Change and Partnering effort with area seniors to raise awareness of misuse of prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications and alcohol abuse. CommPre has developed into one of the leaders in the environmental prevention field in California.

In 1992, under Keith’s leadership and experience with detoxification and treatment, HSI was awarded a contract to operate a men’s detox and treatment program in San Jose. Originally known as the Bascom Avenue Rehabilitation Facility (BARF) HSI staff quickly changed the name of the program to Horizon South. Today Horizon South provides 10 detox beds and 31 residential beds for men in the south bay.

In 1993 Project Eden, a youth focused agency in Alameda County founded in the 1960’s, needed a larger agency with a well established administrative structure and compatible philosophy to assume management of their services. HSI took on this challenge. Today Project Eden provides support services to local schools, the probation department and to families. Under HSI leadership Project Eden began services for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered and questioning youth, providing a place where these youth are able feel safe and build self-confidence. In 1995 they sponsored their first Gay Prom for youth who may not be welcome at their own school proms and where they could experience an alcohol/drug-free social event. In June of 2009 Project Eden hosted the prom for the 14th year. Each year approximately 400 youth participate. While most are from the San Francisco Bay Area, youth have come from as far away as Alaska and London, England specifically to attend the prom. Each year community volunteers provide donations and chaperone support to make this happen.

In 1994 HSI welcomed Mandana Community Recovery Center, an established community based program in search of a more compatible agency to manage their services. Today Mandana serves over 40,000 participants annually providing assessments, referrals and space for sixty 12-step groups and educational workshops each week.

As HSI has grown so has its need for staff training and development. Originally created to serve alcohol dependent men, HSI has grown to serve adults and youth with both alcohol and drug problems, and currently at least 50% of program participants have a co-occurring mental illness. To respond to this growing need for care, HSI created a Clinical Services Department in 1996 that was staffed by a full time Clinical Psychologist to fill this gap. The Clinical Services Director oversees weekly clinical supervision at each treatment site and supervises monthly training for all counseling staff.

The newest program created by HSI, with funding from Alameda County, is the Cherry Hill Detoxification Sevices Program, a 32 bed residential service and sobering station for men and women. Sited in two buildings designed specifically for this service, HSI has been able to apply its “best practices” developed over many years of service.

As we entered our 35th year of service in 2009 Horizon Services, Inc. (HSI) was proud to be the recipient of the Valuing Diversity Award presented by CADPAC (County Alcohol and Drug Program Administrators in California). Over the years, HSI has developed trainings and strategies to open our doors to potential clients of any race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, mental and physical disabilities, martial status, sexual orientation, gender identification, medical condition, citizenship, ancestry or veteran status. We look forward to continuing to serve individuals, families and communities in the future.

The path to recovery is individual but we can help you all the way.