From Windhorse Community Service, Inc. website  http://www.windhorsecommunityservices.com/about/clinical-approach , the definition of “Basic Attendance”

Basic Attendance

Our essential clinical practice for integrating a person with his or her environment is “basic attendance.” This is a subtle combination of being with the person with the skill and understanding of a therapist and the warmth and empathy of a friend. It involves engaging with the person in ordinary activities of daily living. We provide help to the client in accomplishing problematic tasks, expanding into areas of interest, scheduling sane rhythms of activities, and furthering personal awareness. In some cases, basic attendance can be provided by a sole team member.del team windhorse).

If the client’s needs are greater, then a team is assembled. Coordination of communication among all Windhorse clinicians and outside service providers is carried out through regular team meetings. Family members are included as active collaborators throughout the treatment process so that our work is informed by them and they, in turn, are supported and educated by us. Constant attention to collaborative learning among family members, the client, team members, and outside providers arouses the real spirit of the Windhorse work. We promote a client’s genuine recovery by helping him or her develop a wholesome domestic environment, healthy relationships, and self-knowledge.

“There is something magical, something hard to name, that happened in my Windhorse team. It had to do with connections created through gentle attentiveness and genuine care in the midst of, what for me was, a time of disconnection and extreme despair.”


“I felt held by the team in a supportive way, not stigmatized as the “sick patient” as I’d experienced in hospital settings. My basic well-being was attended to and cultivated in a climate of trust, collaboration and open communication. Everyone on the team, not just me as the client, learned and grew from the experience.

“The Windhorse Shift or Basic Attendancecan look quite ordinary from the outside, involving activities such as walks, meal preparation, cleaning the living space or simply sitting together. But from the inside the extraordinary is taking place. The extraordinary is human contact. It is the recognition and practice of humanness that really sets Windhorse apart from other mental health models.”

— A client-graduate