SummitStone is working to address the needs of our youth, young adults and families in Larimer County who may find themselves experiencing First Episode Psychosis (FEP). We know psychosis can be treated, and early treatment increases the chance of a successful recovery.

The Ascent program provides evidenced-based practices to youth and young adults who are 15 to 29 years old. Clients receive treatment from an interdisciplinary team, who provide therapy, support for their employment and educational goals, assistance in managing symptoms, as well as helping them with medication and primary care coordination.


  • Serves clients aged 15-29 years old who are experiencing an onset of psychotic spectrum symptoms which may include troubling thoughts, feelings and behaviors
  • Provides a community-based approach to mental wellness while providing treatment in a client-driven approach for up to 3 years
  • Includes wraparound services from a multi-disciplinary team that include therapists, case managers, peer support specialists, substance abuse specialists, psychiatrists and nurses
  • Exclusion criteria: pervasive developmental disorder, medical or neurological disorder, primary drug or alcohol use disorder.


  • Outreach and engagement
  • Assessment, diagnosis and treatment planning by mental health professionals specifically trained in early psychosis work
  • Education and support for individuals and families/primary support systems
  • Crisis and relapse planning
  • Assistance with knowing rights and available benefits
  • Goal setting and planning
  • Mentoring and opportunities to meet others
  • Independent living skill development

  Some of the most common signs of psychosis include:

  • A sudden loss of interest in things that the person used to find enjoyable
  • Inability to do the things that the person could do before (e.g., a person who normally loves math suddenly can’t do it anymore)
  • Social withdrawal and isolating from friends and family
  • Dramatic changes in sleep pattern
  • Statements or behavior that are bizarre and inconsistent with what’s going on around them

Emergence of Symptoms

Psychotic disorders rarely emerge suddenly. Most often, the symptoms evolve and become gradually worse over a period of months or even years.

  1. Reduced Performance
  • Trouble reading or understanding complex sentences
  • Trouble speaking or understanding what others are saying
  • Becoming easily confused or lost
  • Trouble in sports or other activities that used to be easy (Example: can’t dribble basketball or pass to team members)
  • Attendance problems related to sleep or fearfulness
  1. Behavior Changes
  • Extreme fear for no apparent reason
  • Uncharacteristic and bizarre actions or statements
  • New, bizarre beliefs
  • Incoherent or bizarre writing
  • Extreme social withdrawal
  • Decline in appearance and hygiene
  • Dramatic changes in sleeping or eating
  1. Perceptual Changes
  • Fear that others are trying to hurt them
  • Heightened sensitivity to sights, sounds, smells or touch
  • Making statements like “my brain is playing tricks on me”
  • Hearing voices or other sounds that others don’t
  • Reporting visual changes (colors more intense, faces distorted, lines turned wavy)
  • Feeling like someone else is putting thoughts into their brain