All Kinds of News for March 07, 2018
Turn-About Ranch is known for pioneering the use of a working cattle ranch as a therapeutic, residential treatment center for youth. Their motto says it all: “Real Ranch. Real Values. Real Change.” Turn-About Ranch continues to successfully help families make life-long changes after this setting provides natural challenges and opportunities for experiential growth. The average stay is a mere 100 days and yet most of their students are able to successfully return home after treatment. Turn-About Ranch is more than a Ranch, it also offers a unique wilderness approach to treatment that plays a large role in the overall success of their program.
When Executive Director Michelle Lindsay was asked why Turn-About Ranch was so successful, she had the following to say, “Turn-About Ranch has the unique ability to combine two types of programming; gleaning the benefits from both wilderness and ranch into one residential treatment center. This allows students to build confidence, learn skills, and grow through natural consequences that occur in the Wilderness setting. Students build on those foundational skills as they transition to the Ranch portion of the program. Students can return to the Wilderness campus if they are unable to manage themselves effectively at the Ranch campus. This reduces the need to interrupt programming as would happen if they needed to be discharged from the program to a higher level of care.”
Arriving at Turn-About Ranch, students go directly to the intake campus, licensed as a Wilderness program. Called “Roundy Camp,” this campus is just seven miles up the mountain road from the main Ranch campus but surrounded by the beauty of nature. Students take a step back in time as a quaint log cabin and farm reminiscent of the late 1800’s provides the atmosphere for the first few weeks of their experience. This rustic environment lacks many of the niceties we all take for granted like electricity or indoor plumbing. Instead of being required to make a wilderness-based survival trek, students get back to the basics by taking an active role on the farm. Turn-About uses many interventions typical to wilderness therapy without being mobile. This setting provides natural challenges and opportunities for experiential growth; achieving the same treatment goals.
Roundy has a maximum of 6 students at once, which allows for an individualized experience. It also provides a controlled setting as students adjust to life away from home. Consistent with Turn-About Ranch philosophy, each student is challenged while being provided the coaching and support to succeed. By the time a student is ready to graduate Roundy and move to the main campus, they will recognize areas of growth and be ready to take another step forward in their personal journey of growth.
This dual-licensure offers unique flexibility to the over-all residential treatment at Turn-About Ranch. Lindsay explains, “It’s the best of both worlds- using the benefits of experiential therapy in both wilderness and ranch environments. As students gain confidence and get comfortable in one setting, they move to the next where they continue to be moved out of their comfort zone and challenged. This also gives them the opportunity to practice their skills and continue therapy in a new environment that includes academics, horsemanship, as well as a group size that goes from 6 students to 26. Not only does the environment shift but they have to negotiate new staff and new students, putting new skills into practice.” This fluid approach has proven effective at maintaining consistent opportunities to learn from experience. Even when making mistakes, students continue forward without giving up on the program as a whole.
It is clear that Turn-About is more than just a Ranch. The versatility and comprehensive nature of this program helps explain why Turn-About Ranch continues to successfully help struggling teens and their families. More than just wilderness therapy, they are able to grow with the individual needs and accomplishments of their students.
About Turn-About Ranch
Turn-About Ranch is a wilderness therapy and residential treatment program located in the heart of Southern Utah’s canyon country. Students experience life on a real working ranch while undergoing treatment to improve their life back home. Surrounded by multiple national parks and the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Turn-About Ranch is the ideal location for youth of today to have the space they need to find healing and purpose.