Since it was founded nearly 50 years ago, Sky Ranch for Boys has helped many, many troubled boys get a second chance towards responsible adulthood. Privacy rules and other factors limit Sky Ranch's ability to publicize all the details of the good work they do day in and day out. But a recent case concerning a boy named Brad from Iowa, tells a powerful tale that has been nearly routine at Sky Ranch ever since the members and friends of the alcohol beverage industry adopted the program. Deb Long was Brad's case manager while he was at Sky Ranch. What follows are her notes on the case and an email message she received from Brad's mom shortly after Brad was discharged from Sky Ranch.
Your support of the Sky Ranch Foundation helps assure this story will be repeated far into the future. Please visit www.skyranchfoundation.org to learn how you can help! We especially hope all our friends will support the Hall of Fame dinner June 8 in Miami, Florida.
What follows is a tribute to all the dedicated staff at Sky Ranch and to the contributors who have made this important work possible through their generosity. At the risk of sounding like all those junk emails which urge you to forward them to all your friends, I hope you'll consider doing so in this case. The Sky Ranch story is worth repeating!
Duncan Cameron Treasurer/Administrator Sky Ranch Foundation
Brad entered the Sky Ranch program January 4, 2007. He was fourteen years old and had been exhibiting behaviors of defiance of authority rules, anger issues, being dishonest, not accepting responsibility for his actions and low self-esteem.
Brad was in our program for almost fifteen months. Brad struggled in the program for several months and was on t-bird status at different times throughout his placement. He slowly developed a healthier sense of self through remedial skills groups, sporting activities and in his academics and communication and support from his family. He learned that he could succeed and that his efforts were rewarded with praise, privileges and a sense of accomplishment. Brad slowly learned that honesty and taking responsibility for one's actions builds respect with others and he responded by being honest with others and accepting responsibility for his actions. The corrective thinking program and the remedial skills groups and sessions helped Brad to learn how to manage his anger appropriately. He learned that instead of throwing temper tantrums or fighting that taking deep breaths, removing himself from situations and talking his feelings out with a caring adult helped him deal more effectively with his anger.
When Brad was discharged from Sky Ranch he was able to manage his anger appropriately, communicate honestly with others, admit when he made a mistake and accept the consequences. He followed the rules and accepted authority. It was obvious from the way Brad carried himself and his interactions with others that he felt much better about himself. Brad accomplished a lot during his placement at Sky Ranch and developed skills which will help him throughout the rest of his life.
Deb Long/Case Manager
Brad’s Mother’s Comments:
I have been meaning to send you an e-mail regarding Brad. I was wanting to thank you for all your work with Brad. I think Sky Ranch is a great organization and believe that you provide young boys with the structure, tools and knowledge they need to make a positive change in their lives. I can only pray that Brad takes everything you have taught him and continues to apply it in his own life. Hopefully he will make good choices and think before he acts. Again, thanks for always keeping us posted on Brad's progress and for all your hard work. It was greatly appreciated! Take care.