Pathways, a 28-day recovery program, is designed to help substance abusing individuals establish a firm foundation in the recovery process. Clients learn recovery skills, receive relapse prevention training and counseling services are provided by a clinical team trained in the latest science-based techniques. Individual, group and family counseling are combined with psycho-educational presentations and strong connections to the 12-Step community to provide clients with a “best practices” approach to overcoming addictive disorders.

Pathways is a fee-for-service program and payment arrangements must be made prior to admission. First Step accepts insurance and payment by credit card is also an option. Click here to learn more:

Extended Care

Extended Care offers options for clients who require more than 28-days of treatment. This program is specifically designed for clients with significant criminal justice involvement or those managing an addictive disorder and either a mental illness or developmental disorders. Care is based on a personalized case plan. The Extended Care program is a minimum 90 stay and requires involvement from a select group of family or friends, who will learn to provide support and watch for signs of relapse in the early stages of recovery.

Extended Care is a fee-for-service program and payment arrangements must be made prior to admission. First Step accepts insurance and payment by credit card is also an option. Click here to learn more:


Seasons is designed specifically for individuals diagnosed with a combination of mental health and substance abuse disorders. The clinical term for this is co-occurring disorders. Seasons is a 12-Step program that also includes symptom management, relapse prevention, communication skill building, family counseling when appropriate, group therapy, goal setting and discharge planning.

Clients stay in the Seasons program 30-60 days, based on the individualized treatment plan. This program is free to clients; paid by the State. Those with private insurance are ineligible. Clients must pay for their own medications.

Choices and Crossroads

First Step’s Choices (male) and Crossroads (female) programs are supervised by the Florida State Department of Corrections. These long-term residential programs were designed for convicted non-violent felons court-ordered to treatment. Both provide individual and group therapy and a focus on workforce re-entry.

This program is free of charge to the clients, paid by the Florida Department of Corrections.

Mothers and Infants

The Mothers and Infants program offers residential treatment services to women who are currently pregnant or post-partum women with custody of newborns from 0 – 12 months of age, and who have a substance abuse disorder diagnosis. The program offers a safe, supportive environment which combines group and individual counseling with parenting, nutrition, and life management classes emphasizing the health of the mother and her infant. Women gain the necessary skills for on-going recovery, self-sufficiency and, when applicable, family reunification.

The Women’s Intervention Specialist conducts outreach services to publicize the Mothers and Infants program which serves this priority population.

The length of stay for each client is based on an individual assessment. Women must be 18 years of age or older and pregnant or post-partum to enter the program which is provided at no cost to the clients.

Voluntary Interim Placement-Enhanced Recovery

The Voluntary Interim Placement-Enhanced Recovery (VIP-ER) program is a collaboration between several Sarasota County agencies. The primary goal of the program is to assist individuals who are homeless so that they may be productive members of society. While housing is handled by The Salvation Army, First Step provides 10 weeks of substance abuse treatment. Additional partner agencies focus on workforce readiness, mental health and family reunification.

To be eligible for the VIP-ER program, one must be at least 18 years of age, a Sarasota County resident and homeless with a substance abuse disorder.

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