All Kinds of News for February 06, 2019
Dropping a loved one off at a treatment center is often a bitter-sweet experience. After hours of researching, planning and traveling, anxieties run high. A recent Turn-About Ranch parent, John S., described his emotions when dropping his son off at Turn-About Ranch, “Dropping a son or daughter off at Turn-About Ranch is not an easy thing. You’re filled with all kinds of emotions. Am I doing the right thing for my kid? Will my child be taken care of? Will he learn the skills needed to succeed when he returns home? There’s so much that is unknown.”
While good-byes can be difficult, the assurance they will receive needed treatment is comforting. Turn-About Ranch uses the admissions as an opportunity for growth and understanding for all involved. The student is introduced to staff and other students and given a full orientation of the program. The parents are given their own tour of the facilities which involves current students as their guides. Turn-About Ranch’s goal is to help insure both student and parent feel the program provides a safe and caring environment.
Regarding his experience, John explained, “I knew that when I dropped my son off at Turn-About Ranch, I would be going on a tour to learn a little more about where my son would be staying and what he would be doing. What I wasn’t expecting is that my tour guides would be two young men who, just like my son, had been sent to Turn-About Ranch by their parents to get their lives back on track. What a pleasant surprise this turned out to be. The three of us wandered, unescorted, through various parts of the ranch while the boys showed me and explained to me what life was like at Turn-About Ranch. Because we were alone for most of the tour, I took advantage of the opportunity to ask the boys a barrage of questions: things I may not have asked if staff had been along. I really wanted to know what it was like from their point of view. Were they glad they had been sent? Did they want to return home? What was the success rate? What was it like for those who struggled with the program? These two young men were amazing. They respectfully answered each question and were both funny and positive about their experiences.”
While this experience is good for the parent, it also benefits the students giving the tour. One of the students wrote about his experience as the tour guide, “Recently, I had the privilege of giving a parent who had just dropped off their son a tour of the [campus]. Another student and I related our experiences here and tried to give the father an idea of what everyday life is like and what his son would be learning and living for the rest of his time at Turn-About Ranch.”
The student continued to explain how this opportunity helped him personally. “Taking the parent for a tour gave me a unique opportunity to gain some insight into the perspective of a parent leaving their child in the care of people they in all likelihood have never met before. I realized that it must be just as hard, if not more, for parents to go through this program. There was definite pain in this father’s eyes as I spoke to him, but I also sensed that he was hopeful for the future and an improved situation with his child. I appreciated this learning opportunity and the trust that the staff showed in allowing me to give the tour. Hopefully, we were able to help the father understand better life here at the ranch and give him some hope for the future.”
John shared, “Having these two young men escort me through Turn-About Ranch gave me tremendous hope for my son. It was hard for me to believe that these courteous young men had just a few months earlier been struggling with the same kinds of things that my son was. They were appreciative that their parents had sent them, looked forward to being with their families again, recognized the pain they had caused their families before arriving at Turn-About Ranch, and expressed some concern and sorrow about leaving the ranch in the near future. Though I realize that there may be challenges ahead for these young men and that my son’s experience at the ranch may not be as positive as theirs, I left feeling relief, hope and confidence about our decision to send our son to Turn-About Ranch”
Providing a real and honest experience for parents and students is an important aspect of Turn-About Ranch’s philosophy. After 30 years of treating troubled teens, they have nothing to hide and everything to share; providing opportunities for growth at every step. Their motto, “Real Ranch. Real Values Real. Change.” is even illustrated in how they treat parents when they are dropping their children off for treatment.
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.