Marimed’s Kailana Program Helps Teens to Set Sail on Their Lives

Psychiatrist Neal Mazer, MD, MPH, has helped start several organizations dedicated to bringing care to others. In the 1980s, Dr. Neal Mazer cofounded the Marimed Foundation, where he handled early grant writing and program development work as deputy director.

Marimed currently runs several initiatives. Its Kailana Program offers highly structured residential therapy and education to Hawai’i adolescents at high risk and those who are in need of comprehensive services. The program involves therapy in family, group, and individual settings as well as recreational and therapeutic activities on the ocean and on land.

Kailana’s ocean-experiential approach to helping adolescents and their families get through difficult times takes advantage of the cultural and historical importance of the sea to Pacific Island and Hawai’i people. Adolescents in the program, who are males from age 14 to age 18, live in homes that are licensed Special Treatment Facilities and undertake several five-day sailing voyages working on one of two Kailana vessels. For more information about this program and others, visit