Jacob's Ladder

By The Fix staff 08/03/17

Located in the quaint village of Aurora, West Virginia three hours from Washington, DC, Jacob's Ladder sprawls across nearly 300 acres of beautiful hemlock orchards and grazing meadows. 

Jacob's Ladder
Location : PO Box F Aurora, WV 26705
Phone : (304) 239-1214
Price : 1 Month: $15,000; 2-3 Months: $9,000/month; 4+ Months: $8,000/month; insurance accepted
Overall :
Accommodations :
Treatment :
Food :
Insurance : Yes
Detox : No

Introduction and Basic Services

Jacob’s Ladder at Brookside Farm is a residential addiction treatment program for men, situated in a private farming community. Located in the quaint village of Aurora, West Virginia three hours from Washington, DC, the campus sprawls across nearly 300 acres of beautiful hemlock orchards and grazing meadows. After being touched by family addiction and seeing first-hand the dearth of treatment options in West Virginia, Dr. Kevin Blankenship founded the facility in 2016. The unique treatment program assimilates holistic methods and physical work with traditional therapies. If needed, the facility can offer limited dual diagnosis support in cooperation with West Virginia University Medicine. The facility now accepts insurance.

Facility and Meals

Once home to a 19th century mountain resort, the residential campus offers peace and solitude as clients are surrounded by rolling mountains and pasture. Jacob’s Ladder is situated across the street from Cathedral State Park, one of the few remaining untouched hemlock forests in Appalachia.

The Jacob’s Ladder residence offers clients a spacious, comfortable atmosphere without many distractions. The rustic aesthetic provides clients with the essentials and little else, which is completely in-step with the tone of the program. Every client has a roommate as the house includes seven bedrooms to accommodate 14 clients at a time. The modest bedrooms come equipped with twin beds and fresh linens. There are multiple bathrooms and several common areas designed for self-education and reflection. There are no TVs in the house, yet it lends itself to a communal environment as a lovely deck wraps around the entire home providing beautiful views from every angle. Immersed in nature and little else, clients are encouraged to enjoy the peace of the rural countryside.

Consistent with the rural theme, clients are encouraged to stay busy tending to the property. This includes meal preparation. The dining room and kitchen are connected to the farmhouse where residents cook their own meals utilizing the freshest food from the farm.

Treatment Protocol and Team

Jacob’s Ladders provides a long-term comprehensive program that combines an individualized approach with holistic and 12-step methods. Nature, family and hard work are key components of the Jacob’s Ladder program, as clients work the farm, maintain the house and spend free time connecting with the outdoors every day.

The treatment is made up of three phases, the first of which disconnects clients with their family. During this time, clients focus on group meetings and tending to the farm. Clients attend two group sessions a day and one individual session per week. All sessions are run by therapists with an expertise in CBT and 12-step principles.

Residents are reconnected with family in the second phase of treatment with an emphasis on providing a loving, supportive atmosphere. The final stage of the program prepares clients for post-treatment life. In addition, client’s families speak personally with the program director twice a month and are encouraged to participate in local Al-Anon meetings.

In addition to Dr. Blankenship, the founder of Jacob’s Ladder and a board certified physician with a specialization in emergency medicine, the facility’s team is comprised of LADCs, recovery coordinators, farming directors and a yoga instructor. Clinical treatment through the West Virginia University Medicine offers psychological services for clients with co-occurring disorders. Drug testing is mandatory on a weekly basis to ensure clients’ safety.

Bonus Amenities

As mentioned before, Jacob’s Ladder encourages clientele to get in touch with themselves through nature and hard work. With this in mind, there are no techy amenities. Clients engage in mindfulness meditation, drum circles and do yoga up to three times a week. There is a studio on the grounds just steps away from the house where clients attend art and music programs. During the second stage of treatment, clients can participate in camping and fishing trips and occasionally off-site trips to sporting events, bowling alleys and movie theaters.


Jacob’s Ladder sets itself apart as a unique facility with a truly innovative approach rooted in 12-step methods and mindfulness techniques. Perhaps more impressive than the focus on nature, hard work and community is the treatment’s emphasis on family involvement. Jacob’s Ladder is a great option for those clients seeking a long-term program that promotes healing from the inside out.

Jacob’s Ladder

PO Box F

Aurora, WV 26705

(304) 239-1214

[email protected]

Jacob's Ladder Cost: 1 Month: $15,000; 2-3 Months: $9,000/month; 4+ Months: $8,000/month. Jacob's Ladder now accepts insurance. Find Jacob’s Ladder on Facebook.

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