Making memories that last a lifetime.

Experiences at The Wave

At The Wave we believe that treatment is a learning curve, a life experience and a big part in the process of transitioning from adolescence into adulthood. 

Teenagers are by nature inquisitive. It is a stage of life where we begin to take charge of our experiences and learn appropriate sharing, risk taking, adaptability and flexibility. 

Many of our young adults arrive with an element of social anxiety, withdrawal or have developed risk taking that is neither appropriate nor conducive to taking on adult responsibilities.

Learning through experience, connecting with peers, leading and following instructions are all essential life skills. Acquiring knowledge and expertise allows young people to have a base from which they can approach social situations with increasing ease. Building trust-based friendships sets the scene for a future that is full of connection and social responsibility. 

‘Experiences’ is one of the seven treatment elements in The Wave Programs and all our experiences are chosen to work within our young adult treatment plans.

A home filled with friendships and connection

We Take Time Out to Build Fun and Friendships

When teenagers and young adults arrive at The Wave, we make certain that they know their only ‘job’ is recovery. Whatever the issues and concerns that they arrive with, we will slowly unpack and explore in the safety and security of the therapeutic relationship.

We also let every young person know that they have a home filled with friendships and connection. We encourage and include our young people to bring their skills, superpowers, experiences and talents into the group and share fun-filled times that build solid friendships and lasting memories.

Evenings and weekends are our focused fun-filled times – whether out on excursions or enjoying staycations – where we dip out of treatment and into activities. Parents and families can keep up-to-date with our latest adventures in our weekly reports.

Trekking and Connecting with Culture

Malaysian Jungle School Experience

Attending Jungle School for a day or two is quite an experience for our young people. After an early start they are able to experience life through the eyes and hearts of the young people who live and work in the small surrounding villages.

Beginning with a trek through the local flora and fauna, we make our way to the art school, where we can watch and take part in local handicrafts. Our young people are then enrolled in their Jungle School teams, to enjoy building a shelter using ‘Bertram’ leaves (collected in the jungle) and perfecting the secrets to ‘fire starting’ (under supervision, of course).

Preparing and cooking a traditional lunch is the next activity. Using traditional bamboo to cook and serve dishes of rice, fish and vegetables, we are able to share and notice the essential aspects of basic nutrition in the jungle. Puzzles, problem solving and blowpipe competitions follow before either a camp out or a hike home with lots of stories to share.

We love the outdoors

Camping and Glamping Adventures

We love being outdoors. We love sleeping under the stars, surrounded by the beauty of Malaysia. We are lucky to have some of the most beautiful scenery in the world right outside our door. We have rainforests, beaches and Cool Highland Tea plantations.

Weekend camping, glamping or simply ‘for the day’ trips are a lot of fun. We have even been known to hold camp outs on our rooftop terrace.

My time at The Wave was one of the best experiences in my life. I participated in many activities, learnt new life skills and made friends from other countries. It opened my eyes and gave me new knowledge and experience to be a better person. Thank you, The Wave, for giving me the best memory ever.

The Wave and water adventures go hand-in-hand

Wild Water Adventures

The Wave and water adventures go hand-in-hand. We have enjoyed boats, beaches, sunset cruises, white water rafting, Wild Aqua Parks, KLCC Deep Dive Aquarium, and PADI courses for all levels.

We also enjoy team water games at home with water polo, indoor pools, outdoor beach games’ events and splashing around in plunge pools.

We have some of the most splendid national parks in the world

Orienteering, Caving and Batu Caves

We are spoilt for choice when it comes to locations for orienteering and caving in Malaysia.

We have some of the most splendid national parks in the world and even a World Heritage site. In fact the worlds largest cave passage is located in Malaysia.

The Bahasa Malay (that’s our local language) word for cave is ‘Gua’ and we have plenty of them. We also have plenty of bats that live in the caves to support the cave ecosystems.

Orienteering and caving are activities that require some courage and often involve a lot of handholding and some screaming. We have some amazing memories of conquering the initial fears and feeling rather confident on the other side.

Our young people can enjoy a variety of team games

The Art of Team Games

Team games and challenges are a great deal of fun – on foot, bikes or even electric scooters.

At The Wave, we believe that everyone should have the opportunity to connect with themselves and others through movement. Being part of a team is not easy for everyone, but we have a superb team of experts who are on hand to organise, cheer and referee. Our young people can enjoy a variety of team games and sporting events as part of their weekly timetable, including futsal, volleyball, soccer, basketball, hockey, netball and water polo.

Our young people also enjoy a variety of ultimate team challenges, including The Wave Olympics, Mystery Adventures and The Original Escape Room challenges.

Our community benefits from learning to work as a team, sharing resources to problem solve, developing leadership skills and having fun together.

We believe that young people benefit from learning to use electronics well

Electronics, Music and Movies

We have a Nintendo Switch, which may seem unusual for some of our young people and their families if challenged by gaming problems, internet issues or smartphone addiction. We believe that young people benefit from learning to use electronics well. That means being smart, savvy and safe. Nintendo Switch games are all chosen for the team game elements, including dance challenges, tennis and even bowling. We do not play alone.

Netflix, music and movies are also enjoyed as ‘shared time’ at The Wave, as part of our relaxation at the end of the therapeutic day.

The Wave has a ‘no-electronics – lots of human interaction’ policy. That means that we use electronics in close proximity or under supervision and only for useful and productive activities. The Wave iPads are safely controlled, much like a hotel iPad, and allow our young people to access education, courses, prep and of course the all important Zoom calls home.

A favourite way to spend Sunday afternoons

Quad Bikes, Go Karts, Hikes and Waterfalls

Everybody loves our quad bike experiences in the hills of Janda Baik, where we are able to venture on and off track.

Go karts and the thrill of the racetrack are a favourite way to spend Sunday afternoons (we also have Mario Carts for more relaxed Sundays at home).

Hiking, swimming under waterfalls, and sunrise climbs are also some of our favourite and most memorable activities.

Experience some of the Eastern influences that our beautiful location adds to our program

Muay Thai and Thai Chi

Muay Thai is a favourite with just about everyone who enjoys the Saturday lessons at The Wave. Families travelling from Europe, The UAE and The USA are often to keen to experience some of the Eastern influences that our beautiful location adds to our program.

Muay Thai is said to build both resilience and confidence and is often included in addictions treatment programs in South East Asia. In fact, it can be one of the reasons that boys and young men stumble upon recovery, rehab and addiction treatment in Thailand, Malaysia and neighbouring countries. We have a superb team of male and female trainers who work on the principles of boosting confidence and determination through perseverance.

Thai Chi is loved for improving flexibility, balance and agility. It also has reported mental health benefits from stabilising mood and helping with low feelings, depression and anxiety. We believe that it is an excellent addition to our trauma-focused care and is another resource that our young people can add to their recovery toolbox.

A carefree afternoon bouncing and jumping

Trampolining, Archery, Futsal and Tennis

Who doesn’t enjoy a carefree afternoon bouncing and jumping? We know that we all love our days at Jumpstreet, our local trampoline park.

Archery, both indoor and outdoor, is a great hit on our experiences list, along with laser tag and paintball. It is a great Sunday activity and certainly keeps everyone on their toes.

Futsal is a really popular game in Malaysia. Similar to five-a-side football, it is played on a hard surface pitch and is essentially an indoor game that can be played all year round. Futsal is popular with our young people from Europe, who often have a flair and love of football. Futsal is FIFA’s official short football game and has been credited for both ‘safe play for all’ and superb skills development. Most of all, we love futsal, for the fun, smiles and Sunday afternoon laughter. Our futsal pitch is just a short walk from the main house.

Tennis lessons are available every week, with additional matches and individual lessons for those who are keen tennis players. Our tennis courts are just a few minutes walk from our main house and across the green from Transitions House (our secondary care).

Essential Cookery Skills Courses for Young Adults

Teen’s Kitchen

Food and nutrition are an interval part of our programs at The Wave. Our young people have the opportunity to get creative and develop skills for life as they join the world-renowned Leith’s courses whilst at The Wave.

The 6–24 week courses encourage teens and young adults to try out new ideas in the kitchen whilst covering the basics needed for independent cooking and entertaining. Our young people leave with a certificate of completion and a world-class experience.

Leith’s School is a London-based, world leader in professional cookery courses and courses for enjoyment.

*Certification is optional. Additional charges may apply.

Weekends are special times

The Brunch and Lunch Club

Weekends are special times. The Wave weekends are times of connection, fun and shared experiences. Our Saturday Brunch and Lunch Club is an opportunity to share in making and creating food and having fun. From sushi to patisseries, macaroons to perfect pizzas; our young adults enjoy creating and sharing in family-style lunches.

Team challenges in the kitchen are always superb fun

The Great Wave Bake Off and Come Dine With Me

Team challenges in the kitchen are always superb fun. Our teams learn to work together and gently compete for the biggest smiles and laughter.

The Great Wave Bake Off showcased some of the most delicious and opulent creations, while Come Dine With Me is a chance to showcase favourite dishes from around the world.

We have had the opportunity to visit the culinary destinations of Singapore, Vietnam, Bahrain, Portugal, Israel and many other superb destinations around the world.

In preparation, our young people prepare menus, shop (virtually if needed) and take over the kitchen. Under the watchful eye of our kitchen managers, whisks and wonders take place. Entertainment and decorations are chooses to compliment the evening and a superb evening of hosting follows. We even manage to recruit some help with the washing up.

Wonderful spa days, with pool, sauna and hot tub

Nails, Hair and Spa Days

We absolutely love our spa days. Whether at home or on location, we enjoy encouraging the benefits of self-care and relaxation. Therapy is a full time job for our young people and we help them develop skills and resources for a calm and quiet mind.

At home we create wonderful spa days, with pool, sauna and hot tub. Our young people who are interested in beauty therapy enjoy designing home menus of treatments. From facemasks, foot masks and make-up classes, to manicures and pedicures, we have fun recreating the style of our favourite spas back home.

Our hair is looked after by Senior Creative Stylist, Ling, at Toni and Guy. When the time comes for a cut, or a whole new look, we trust Ling to provide a great experience for our young people who are accompanied at all times by their personal recovery specialist. Toni and Guy also offer experiences for the young people in our secondary care house, Transitions House, to experience a working/training environment in creative hair design.

My time at The Wave was one of the best experiences in my life. I participated in many activities, learnt new life skills and made friends from other countries. It opened my eyes and gave me new knowledge and experience to be a better person. Thank you, The Wave, for giving me the best memory ever.

Using the curriculum from The London Fine Arts Studio

Arts Masterclass

We love to use creative therapies as part of our main program and as part of our education program. Using the curriculum from The London Fine Arts Studio, our teens and young adults are able to enroll and complete courses that explore the fundamentals of drawing, painting with oils, and using a variety of mediums to explore their inner artist. This provides certification of completion and the opportunity to progress to diploma level and beyond.

*Certification optional. Additional charges may apply.

The region’s most prestigious school for young riders and professionals alike

Horse Riding and Stable Management

We are incredibly fortunate to benefit from our close proximity to Selangor Polo Club, known as the region’s most prestigious school for young riders and professionals alike. Our teenagers and young adults can enjoy riding as a new skill or to develop skills from home. Lessons are available for all abilities in groups or on a one-to-one basis.

Horses are the most popular animal to work with in therapy. Young people benefit from the responsive nature of the horse, together with the animals’ exceptional ability to mirror the feelings of those handling them. The horse and rider develop an intuitive ability to trust in the process and connect without words.

British Horse Society: Levels 1–3

For many of our young riders the option to further their skills and knowledge can lead to Certificate Levels 1 and 2. For those who would like to begin coaching others, BHS Level 3 is a great introduction to formal qualifications.

Malaysian RSPCA and PAWS

Small Animal Care and Management

The RSPCA in Malaysia offers Pet Care Programs, which involved basic animal care and handling. Whilst many of our young people will opt to take this course as part of the group education programs, additional experiences on Saturdays are available for those who would like to develop animal management or who are considering a career in Veterinary Science.

We are lucky to be able to volunteer our services, as part of the Global Citizenship element in several Cat Shelters and Homes for Dogs. We last counted over 500 dogs and 500 cats that have benefited from our contribution to maintain ace, feeding, basic animal care and cuddles.

We utilised our creativity and the needlework room to make Cat Snooze Pods for local Cats and Kittens without homes. Having mastered the Art of Patchwork Quilting, our teens created all weather cat beds and placed them in areas known to be home to outdoor kitties without a home. We send food, beds, love and plenty hug to our fury KL Kittens.

Future projects are underway for us to take volunteer roles in KL Zoo. We look forward to updating our Experiences Page and adding a Large Animal section soon.

Everything Grows with Love

Organic Kitchen Garden

We have created an organic kitchen garden. This project has seen evolving designs, cultivating seedlings, kitchen menu planning and exploring sustainable agriculture. The benefit of our commitment was shown when our young people collected their first ‘crop’ and presented it to the chefs to use as part of the evening meal.

Royal Horticultural Society

Hands-on activities and learning experiences are the ones that we remember for years to come. We have a superb outdoor space that has been entirely created by our young adults. The RHS courses and workshops allow us to combine superb creativity and hands on skill building with a certification of achievement. The RHS is globally acknowledged as being a leader in the world of horticulture and certificates show commitment and aptitude for project management and horticultural knowledge.

Hot dogs, popcorn and a movie under the stars

Outdoor Rooftop Cinema

Hot dogs, popcorn and a movie under the stars. The beanbags are out and the tents are in place for the ultimate rooftop sleep over. Watching movies and traditional drive-in treats, our young people enjoy plentiful Saturday nights under the warm, clear sky.

We use movies to relax, share our interests and find common interests among our peers. We also use the themes in movies to extend the therapeutic week, picking up where our groups left off and providing an alternative script or viewpoint.

Movies bridge cultures, music opens dialogue, dancing and comedy bring a shared experience.

Our young adults grow through shared experiences in and out of the therapy roo

Murder Mystery Evenings and Escape Rooms

Entertainment at home can be just as exciting as weekends outside. Themed detective evenings bring our love of Escape Rooms home. We love the psychological play, whilst problem solving, clues and teamwork skills are put to the test. Getting into character and dressing up is all part of the build up. We design authentic menus and create the scenes and sets.

Whilst there is no doubt that fun is on the agenda, we are mindful that psychological processes, physical activity and social cooperation are being tried and challenged. Using teamwork builds on the collaboration that we experience during the treatment week.

A decrease in social anxiety and isolation, together with an increase in connection, is one of many reasons that residential teen treatment is successful. Our young adults grow through shared experiences in and out of the therapy room.

A Red Carpet Event

The Woscars (The Wave Oscars)

Creativity, theatre arts and productions are our forte. We love the buzz in the community as our young people come together with a fusion of ideas, scripts and performances.

The Woscars (The Wave Oscars) are a night of red carpet, glittering fun and celebration of achievement. The community celebrates those who have graduated from treatment, maintained, achieved, smiled or found a reason to continue putting one foot in front of the other. We recognise the determination and commitment to change and we celebrate living a life of infinite possibilities.

We design outfits, lay the red carpet, enjoy creating menus and laugh at the speeches. The Woscars are a time of coming together and being grateful for all we have and all we are planning to be.

We celebrate everything

Birthdays and Celebrations

We are lucky enough to have young people join us from over 40 countries, bringing with them a dazzling range of cultural influences and family traditions. We embrace and accept every single one.

We are also fortunate to be located in a beautiful and harmonious melting pot. Malaysia welcomes diversity and inclusion. Our team is represented from every continent and we are blessed with 365 days to celebrate in every year.

We believe that young people who experience connection without prejudice, judgment or barriers will carry and embrace an education of world harmony for generations to come.

All around the world people use holidays and celebrations to mark time, provide structure and join in community. Research shows that young people who engage in ‘rituals’ and celebrations experience a level of predictability that can significantly reduce anxiety.

That’s just one more reason to join in the fun.

Receiving gifts and love can be difficult for anyone in mental health crisis. Social anxiety, feeling like one does not fit in or fearing rejection can be some of the many reasons that young people have found it difficult to allow themselves to enjoy events. With practice and a nurturing peer group, our young people learn new skills in social awareness, enjoy making memories, taking part and seeing others join in with a smile.

We celebrate religious festivals and events with no-religious affiliations. We are able to embrace the beauty of the world and its people. We are curious, we share, we explore and we discover.

Every young person at The Wave enjoys a superb birthday party. We are grateful to be alive and we take the opportunity to share what that means to us.

One of the favourite activities for our young people

Batik Painting

Batik is a process of waxing and dyeing cloth. Batik fabrics are intricate, beautiful and showcase the colour and beauty that Malaysia offers. During the process of ‘Batiking’, fabric is gently waxed and dyed on many occasions. The wax acts as a colour blocker, whilst the pigment in the dye creates everything from subtle to bold, traditional designs and patterns.

Batik painting is one of the favourite activities for our young people from all over the world. As Batik is a craft that has its origins firmly based in South East Asia, our young people from Europe, Australia and further afield enjoy embracing the local crafts and cultures. We make some wonderful presents that are ready to send home to friends and family.

Batik connects us to patience, following instructions, appreciating the precision in simple tasks and connecting with the environment and we end the day with a spectacular piece of original art to anchor our memories of Malaysia.

Malaysia’s best beaches

Langkawi, Penang and Desaru Coast

Malaysia is probably best known for amazing jungles and spectacular wildlife. However, Malaysia also has some of Asia’s most spectacular beaches and beautiful islands. Our families often choose to spend time after our family therapy intensives in a wonderful beach location to relax and reconnect. We recommend The Datai Hotel in Andaman Bay, Four Seasons Resort in Langkawi and One&Only Resorts for families to visit post family therapy.

Teenagers and young adults at The Wave enjoy excursions to beach locations, with BBQs, water sports and team building fun. Johor Bahru is a few hours by road from The Wave. It is very close to the border of Malaysia and Singapore. It is also home to The Desaru coast, voted one of the top 20 beach locations in the world.

Our young people enjoy extended day trips or overnight therapeutic trips, where the fun-filled days include banana boats, wakeboarding, surfing, jet skis and waterskiing.

Families often choose to take a break at the end of the family therapy and enjoy a short break with their young person, prior to a final discharge session. This allows the family to practice their new skills, improved communication and practise being both seen and heard within the family system. Malaysia offers everything to make reconnecting at the end of therapy a rewarding experience for all.

Together, we will begin your recovery journey

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Have any questions or want to get started with the admissions process? Contact our friendly care team – they’ll be happy to answer any questions or concerns you might have and will walk you through how to prepare for your child’s stay at The Wave.

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Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

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