All Kinds of News for April 05, 2017
Moonridge Academy, a small residential treatment center for younger girls ages 11-15, is a proud member of the CERTS family of programs. Each March, the CERTS programs --Moonridge Academy, Kolob Canyon and Mountain Springs Preparatory Academy -- come together for a 2-week international trek. In past years, treks have included trips to the British Isles, Western Europe and Eastern Europe. This year executive teams at the different programs decided the trek would be to New Zealand and it was going to be a high adventure trip! The trip included a total of 12 students with four of them being from Moonridge Academy. The other students on the trip were from two other CERTS programs. All Moonridge Academy students who were on Level 4 or higher of the program were considered for the trip. The treatment team then reviewed each student considered before making an ultimate recommendation. Since the trip is an extra cost for parents, parents of eligible students were sent information about the trip. A total of 6 students were eligible for the trip and of those 6 students, the parents of 4 students decided that they wanted their daughter to participate.
Adventure therapy is a large part of Moonridge Academy’s day-to-day program. Adventure Therapy allows the girls at Moonridge Academy to challenge themselves, trying new things that are often physically difficult for them. Therapists at Moonridge Academy have said more than once, that the best breakthroughs in therapy rarely happen on a couch. The true moments of change have been seen while hiking in the rain, laughing with friends in a raft or facing fears as the student rock climbs higher than they've ever gone before. A girl’s eligibility and invitation to participate in adventure therapy events does not depend on her level at Moonridge Academy or securing a high status in the program. It starts on the day of admission. Girls are immediately immersed in being active and experiencing new things. This trip would allow the girls at Moonridge Academy to take adventure to a new level and a new continent.
Students and staff left for New Zealand on March 6, 2017. After a long 14-hour flight, the group arrived in New Zealand. They were met by rain, rain and more rain. Despite the wet climate, the students from Moonridge Academy were able to participate in planned activities in Auckland. Some activities also had to be cancelled due to the weather, and quickly replaced by other activities. One of the students explained, “With all of the rain, we had most places to ourselves!” Once the rain subsided and the sun came out a few days later, the trek was back on track with outside activities that would thrill just about anyone. Activities included hiking, river rafting, bridge climbing, zip lining, snorkeling, exploring a volcano and a visit to Hobbiton.
Students and staff arrived back at Moonridge Academy on March 17, 2017. Executive Director Tawny Thomas who directed the trip reported, “This was an amazing trip that allowed girls to experience things they had never experienced before and might never again.” One of the girls who went on the trip said that it was a “trip of a lifetime”. She also reported that confidence in herself grew on this trip as she did things that she never thought she would be able to accomplish. Mission accomplished!
About Moonridge AcademyMoonridge Academy is a CERTS Program in beautiful Southern Utah with 16 beds, and is specifically designed for younger girls, ages 11-15. Younger girls need a younger environment, without the influence of older girls' more sophisticated or advanced issues. Moonridge takes a young approach to therapy and intervention, even our DBT program is taught and delivered at this specific age range level. Moonridge is intensive residential treatment for girls with issues of trauma, emotional regulation, depression, family conflict, and beginning stages of self-harm or substance experimentation. Traditional schooling is provided and Moonridge uses play and laughter to connect, a warm family environment to protect, and deep therapy to inspire and create change.