École de Psychoterapie Institutionelle
de la Chesnaie

Chateau de la Chesnaie
41120 Chailles, France
tel: 00-33-02-54794827
fex: 00-33-02-54794057


At Clinique La Chesnaie some 100 patients are cured at the same time from all over France and in some cases from abroad. The most of patients suffer from acute or chronic mental illnesses, and there are always patients with symptoms of addiction. Beside the classical methods of cure, many forms of individual and group therapy are applied. The atmosphere of the institute is receptive and supportive.


When applying for hospitalization the patient spend one day at the institute. During this short period he/she has the opportunity to get experiences on everyday life of the clinique, and to make an appointment with one of the physicians. This preliminary consultation is the starting point for planning the treatment. The great number of applicants causes that in many cases the patients must wait for a certain time; the urgent cases are, of course, exceptions.
As the patient has spent one day at the clinique before the treatment period, and has met one of the physicians, the place is not totally unknown for him/her. From the very beginnig, he/she is supported by one of the helpers: his/her money, papers and clothes are placed, he/she is guided around the institute, the services and the other patients are presented etc. The adaptation is never easy, but usually the patients are able to tolerate the new circumstances. The visits of relatives and friends are organized in agreement with the physician.
Beside the medicinal treatment other therapeutical forms are applied at the clinique as well. Among others, the methods of movement-therapy, gymnastics, psychomotorical treatment, yoga, relaxation according to Schlultz's autogen training and different sports are used. The primary aim of these therapeutic forms is recovery of the harmony of brain, spirit and body and the development of social skills. The theatre-therapy is for example, such a particular therapeutic form, where the movement, the acceptance of rules and the dimension of playing are mixed with creativity.

Social services

The mentally ill patients many times need some social help. The main aim of this work is to make the patients to re-discover the social contacts, re-build their own identity and social bounds. It is very important, that the relations and orientations of the patients are examined in concrete situations, related to concrete actions. The social help actually means that the patient is thought to manage different situations (e.g. arranging affairs at offices, looking for flat or job, etc.)
The other aspect of social work is the connection with patients' relatives and friends. The proper relation and understanding usually is an important step to recovery.
The new employees of the clinique have to take part is a two-year course to complete their knowledge with the information about the clinique's local specialties. The employees of the clinique are obliged to take part in seminars and conferences as well, and they have to keep live contact with other institutions with similar character.
The clinique always accepted students for practice. The period of the practice lasts form one month to one year. A member of clinique's team supports the students; once in a week they have a gathering where they can discuss experiences.
The members of clinique's team also have gatherings, from October till June, once in a week. There they discuss, among others, the recent researches; in these seminars the patients are welcome, as well. During the summer period, the so-called "little university" substitutes these seminars.
The library and the videotheque are used mainly by the employees and student

The Club

In the creative activities of the clinique the Club plays the main role. The Club has good contact with the local cultural organizations. Its members make performances, concerts, they visits exhibitions, castles etc. They have an important role in preparation of the feasts of the clinique.
In the framework of the club, there are different workshops: ceramic- and photo circle, movie-club, library and prelection-club, theatre. Occasionally other circles are formed, where the participants can learn many things from making kites to dancing African dances.

In the framework of Private University the members of the club invite professionals of certain fields, who discusses with participants different themes, led by a patient and a member of clinique's team.
Once in a year a plant-exhibition is organized, where rare flowers and plants and herbs are presented to the public. In these exhibitions take part other institutions as well.
The primary aim of the Club is - from the very beginning of its existence - to support the patients culturally and morally and to inform the public about the nature of mental illnesses. It offers an opportunity for people to meat, and eventually to work one another, to be able to engage different roles in society. It gives the possibility for patients to re-discover their own identity.
The Club organizes a big communal feast in the country, and it has been organizing for 25 years jazz concerts once in a month. At these concert the patients can meet the musicians and the "civilian" participants - so the traditional isolation of the psychiatrically hospital is eased even in this way.
The club has a social service, which in Paris and neighborhoods is to help the re-integration of ex-patients into the society. The social workers held consultations for those who need it, and they have a counseling service as well.