River Stones Residential Treatment Inc. is a non-profit organization that provides treatment to challenging and intense teenage boys.

River Stones was founded in 2000 by Executive Director, Russell Rice, a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in the quaint city Redlands, California at the base of the San Bernardino Mountains.

Mr. Rice has developed a unique and aggressive clinical program that employs Evidence Based Practices to successfully treat the needs of the youth and families.

River Stones is a leader in the field of adolescent treatment and has a unique relational model that many, including judges, researchers, therapists, social workers & parents have referred to as “model program”.

Our commitment is to treat our youth with the most effective treatments available by the most caring people available, and to prepare them for a life of success and independence.

Using relationship as a primary vehicle of change, River Stones blends those theories into a unique model that teaches and promotes pro-social skills, emotional intelligence and moral development.

Staff members on all levels are heavily trained in finding opportunities to teach and model positive social skills, managing one’s own emotions, as well as the emotions of others and to develop a habit of practicing moral and ethical decision making.
This comprehensive approach delivered by staff who are deeply caring, compassionate and committed has proven highly effective and has earned River Stones a reputation as a

“model program”.





Mending Broken Lives

Mentoring Boys Into Men

Building ...

Evidence Based

Using relationship as a primary vehicle of change, River Stones unique treatment model blends

Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Social Learning

Positive Psychology

Neurofeedback and

Nurtured Heart ­­®

into a unique model that teaches and promotes pro-social skills, emotional intelligence and moral development.

River Stones’ collaboration with top ranked Pomona College has allowed us to take our program to a new level of quality. We work closely their professional team of researchers led by respected and published professors with the oversight of the Institutional Review Board. Clients are tested at intake and every six months to track progress. We also measure the outcomes of specific interventions such as neurofeedback and other interventions used to treat our population. Some of our intervention results are published in professional journals and presented and national conferences. We hope that our treatment interventions not only help our clients, but that they may also be used to inform the broader treatment community about what works with this population.

Quality programs don’t just treat the boy, they treat the entire family system.

Helping youth manage their behavior and then returning them to a broken system just doesn’t make sense.

Our therapists specialize in creating healthy families and getting to the root of the problem. We offer intensive family therapy, which includes a systemic approach, as well as teaching parenting skills specifically designed to parent intense kids.

Family Focused





The California state average of High School graduation for foster youth hovers around a dismal 50%.

Through our dedication and commitment to all boys leaving with a High School Diploma, River Stones has been able to achieve a 100% High School graduation rate for those who stay with us through High School.
This is realized by a tight system of accountability, addressing the specific educational needs and having a close relationship with the teachers and school district.

American Academy of Pediatrics rates Neurofeedback Level 1-Best Practice for treatment ADD and ADHD.

Neurofeedback is a non invasive intervention that trains the brain to function better and more healthy. It allows kids to play games using their brain, helping them learn how utilize parts of the brain that need developed in order to control impulses.

River Stones has a fully operating neurofeedback clinic on site to treat our clients and we have experienced amazing success at helping kids be more successful in school and decreasing or eliminating the need for medication.

Rewiring the Brain: Neurofeedback

Rewriting Stories

Transforming their life narrative is a central part of our goal in working with youth.

To help rewrite their story we feel it is imperative to provide positive experiences to help shape a new way of talking about their lives. We have provided some life changing trips and created some great stories for them to tell. Some of these stories include travel, backpacking and camping in:

  • Hawaii
  • Washington D.C.
  • New York City
  • Lake Tahoe
  • Grand Canyon
  • Yosemite National Park
  • Eastern Sierras
  • Big Sur
  • Joshua Tree National Park
  • House Boating on Lake Powell
  • Mammoth
  • Annual Beach House Spring Break in San Diego
  • Colorado

Revealing Excellence: Transformation over Behavior Change

Our kids often come to us mired in labels, ADHD, Attachment Disorder, Foster child, Special Ed, etc.

Their “inner portfolio” is largely negative and being that they are “intense” kids, they often primarily elicit negative attention. It is our mission and goal to transform that inner portfolio, not just modify behavior.

Our staff are highly trained in the Nurtured Heart Approach ® to hone in on any amount of success or excellence the child displays, and if our lenses are adjusted correctly, we can see the toughest of kids are far more successful than they are unsuccessful.

Refracting the light of this success results in a new identity and transformed view of themselves.

A serious problem in residential treatment is the staff turnover, which teaches kids not to trust as employees are stuck in the training mode and fail to fully get integrated into the system of delivery.

River Stones’ staff members are not only committed and loving people, they love their jobs and have over four times the length of employment of the industry average.
That translates into the same people working with the kids throughout their stay.



The youth’s experience in our program is very important to us. Nearly all of the youth state that River Stones is the “best group home” they have experienced. This is relevant because it indicates they feel genuinely cared for, have good relationships with the staff and it provides motivation to grow in order to stay. We regularly ask the youths’ feedback with regard to the program and evaluating the staff. The result is feeling heard and a sense of belonging.