HRS is excited to collaborate with the following entities: The Body Project, Emerge, O’Connor Professional Group, the Healthy Minds Network, and Timberline Knolls. These new partnerships will enable us to guide universities nationwide who are in the process of supporting students on their campus with body image and/or eating concerns.



Body Image Partner


The Body Project is a dissonance-based body-acceptance program designed to help high school girls and college-age women resist cultural pressures to conform to the thin-ideal standard of female beauty and reduce their pursuit of unhealthy thinness. The Body Project is backed by 15 years of quantitative research that demonstrate the program’s ability to decrease body dissatisfaction, thin-ideal internalization, eating disorder symptoms, dietary restraint, and negative affect. The Body Project Collaborative, formed in 2012 by Dr.’s Eric Stice and Carolyn Becker, created new training opportunities for those individuals interested in facilitating the Body Project. Dr. Stice created the Body Project and Dr. Becker pioneered the strategy of training collegiate peer-leaders to facilitate Body Project groups in university settings. To date, the Body Project has been used by numerous high schools and over 100 college campuses and has been delivered to over 200,000 young women. Research supports the use of the Body Project not only with those who have elevated body dissatisfaction, but also in more diverse groups of adolescent girls and young women that include those with lower levels of body dissatisfaction.


The Body Project Collaborative offers one and two day trainings that can be specifically tailored to meet the unique needs of any group. This initiative aims to disseminate The Body Project to as many young women as possible at minimal cost.



Body Image Partner


Research has demonstrated that body image dissatisfaction has risen in adults, adolescents, and children over the last two decades, including both women and men. To date, body image treatment is a minor focus of many eating disorder treatment programs and is rarely included in obesity treatment or weight management efforts, yet it is a key risk factor and relapse factor for eating disorders.


Emerge takes evidence-based programs that improve body image, eating disorders, and weight management and adapts them into interactive media and technologies aimed at transforming thoughts, perceptions and behaviors. Emerge programs aim to empower individuals to seek health and thriving as the desired endpoint, rather than unattainable appearance goals.


Difficulty with body image affects many individuals’ health and well-being. Problems with body image are found to be associated with depressed mood, increased weight gain, poor exercise behaviors, decreased consumption of fruits and vegetables, increased use of steroids, and eating disorders. In contrast to what many fad diets and reality TV shows promote, research has shown that hating your body is not, in fact, a good motivator for positive health behaviors.


Certain evidence based programs for body image improvement, eating disorder prevention and treatment, and weight management show promise for countering the escalating trends in our society. For these programs to realize their potential and impact society, they must be in step with today’s digital and interactive capabilities. This adaptation from offline research to putting mobile, interactive tools into the hands of those who need it most is at the core of Emerge’s work.



Clinical Partner


O’Connor Professional Group offers a continuum of behavioral health services to individuals, families, employers and advisors. Their areas of focus include addiction, eating, mood and personality disorders, and mental health issues, as well as failure to launch services for young adults. Staff guide families through the behavioral health industry, provide concierge services to identify suitable treatment and aftercare options, and assist in creating and implementing sustainable recovery plans.


Their team of professionals hold expertise, both through advanced training and education and personal experience, in recovery from a variety of behavioral health issues. Services take place in the homes and communities of their clients, often as a precursor to or aftercare plan from treatment in an inpatient setting, or other structured living environment.


Services for those with an eating disorder include the following: assistance with forming a comprehensive treatment team that addresses medical, nutritional, and psychological needs; coordination and facilitation of communication with outpatient treatment team members, weekly in-person meetings, supportive meal supervision, including post-meal distraction, behavioral rehearsal of new coping skills, skills coaching by phone in times of moderate crisis/risk of relapse, and assistance with life skills.


Services for families includes: psycho-education on eating disorders and ways to appropriately support one’s family member in recovery; treatment recommendations and formulation of a family care plan; care coordination; tracking and reporting of progress; assistance managing crisis situations, referrals to family-focused resources, increasing communication within the family, assistance with approaching high-risk situations, and support with daily logistics, such as insurance issues.



Research Partner


Based at University of Michigan, the Healthy Minds Network (HMN) is dedicated to improving the mental and emotional wellbeing of young people through innovative, multidisciplinary scholarship. HMN addresses the connection between the mental health of adolescents and young adults and their health behaviors, physical health, and social, educational, and economic outcomes. Taking a public health approach, HMN focuses on three main objectives: (1) producing knowledge (research), (2) distributing knowledge (dissemination), and (3) using knowledge (practice). Through its rich array of research projects, the network serves as a resource for secondary and higher education administrators, researchers, clinicians, policymakers, and the public.


One of HMN’s most important projects is the Healthy Minds Study (HMS), an annual survey-based study examining mental health (e.g., depression, anxiety, eating disorders), related health behaviors (e.g., substance use, sleep) and service utilization among college students. Since its national launch in 2007, HMS has been fielded at over 100 campuses in the U.S. and abroad, with over 100,000 student respondents. HMS data have been used by schools for many purposes, including: assessing needs; raising awareness; comparing to peer institutions; strengthening grant applications; advocating to administrators for mental health resources; evaluating existing programs; and developing and improving campus programs. HMS is available for implementation at all types of higher and post-secondary institutions, including U.S. and international four-year colleges and universities and community colleges.



Addiction Partner


Timberline Knolls Residential Treatment Center is located on 43 beautiful acres just outside Chicago offering a nurturing environment of recovery for women and girls ages 12 and older struggling to overcome substance use disorders, eating disorders, mood disorders, trauma and co-occurring disorders. While providing intensive treatment for addiction—rooted in 12-step facilitation, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, expressive therapies, family systems and spirituality—Timberline Knolls places an emphasis on a holistic, medically informed approach of healing the mind, body and spirit. An integrated team of psychiatrists, nurses, addiction counselors and therapists have expertise in treating substance use disorders as well as co-occurring disorders—other emotional, psychological and medical conditions that occur simultaneously.


Addiction Specific Groups: At Timberline Knolls, group therapy is a large part of a resident’s treatment experience.  In addition to working one-on-one with their dedicated multi-disciplinary treatment team, residents attend groups such as The Stages of Recovery—Addiction Specific; Recovery Principles; Big Book, Moms in Recovery and others.


12-Step Participation: In addition to individual, family, group and expressive therapy, a key component of addiction treatment at Timberline Knolls is teaching residents how to engage with the 12-step community. This additional support is facilitated by participating in on and off-site meetings, which include Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, Al-Anon, Families Anonymous and more.


Medical Intervention: To help residents engage in therapy, medical intervention for those struggling with substance use disorders is offered.  Medications to assist residents in detoxification and abstinence from their addiction are available and administered by the medical staff.



“Eating disorders affect millions of young people and it is estimated that only one in thirty-five individuals in crisis seek some form of treatment. Therefore, it is crucial that all of us play a part in reducing the shame and stigma that exists with regards to this potentially life-threatening illness. We must also consider establishing affiliations that better provide the resources and treatment necessary to allow for the healing to begin. I'm honored to partner with the above entities through HRS and I thank them for their continued support of our on-going initiatives within the university community.” – Dawn Hynes, MSW, Founder of Hynes Recovery Services