LIFE AT THE RANCH
Family Environment & Responsibilities
Each Sunny Crest home is a family unit of two house parents living within the home 24/7 with up to eight boys. As a member of this family, each rancher will share in the responsibilities of the household with assigned chores.
Sunny Crest Youth Ranch is also a working ranch. Each boy will have assigned responsibilities which could involve care and feeding of animals, gardening, recycling or other day-today aspects of maintaining a ranch.
Individualized Treatment Plan
An initial Individual Rancher Treatment Plan (IRTP) is developed when a boy is accepted into Sunny Crest and periodically updated as determined by a rancher’s progress towards stated goals. Professional on-site and off-site treatment modalities will be included in the treatment plan as needed. All treatment plans will include learning and practicing basic social skills, the core behaviors of good character, and conflict resolution techniques.
Animal Assisted Therapy
Animal assisted therapy is one of the cornerstones of the SCYR program. Which aspect of animal assisted therapy is best suited for each rancher is carefully selected from the beginning to end of his stay at SCYR. Each rancher will learn the proper care, feeding and handling of his animal. This form of therapy provides a safe opportunity for the rancher to gain compassion, gentleness and respect for animals, other people and themselves. Using a variety of animals, large and small, animal assisted therapy enables a boy to enjoy the healing magic of giving and receiving unconditional acceptance and love. He will also learn that living creatures, whether animals or mankind, respond positively to a human touch.
SCYR founders Ron and Ellyn Coppess have spent their careers in public education and know the critical importance of education in building a successful life. We acknowledge that most of the children that come to Sunny Crest will be credit deficient or behind in their academics and will have a need for credit recovery and a tailored tutorial program designed just for them. Upon acceptance to the Ranch, each boy will be given a battery of tests to assess his level of academic knowledge so that this academic progress can be closely supervised. Ranchers will attend Lakewood Public Schools. Within their Sunny Crest family, ranchers will experience the structure of homework supervision and tutorial support, when needed, in order to advance academic skills. The SCYR will bring the kids to life with our cutting edge programs. Each student will have their own IREP (Individual Rancher Treatment Plan). We will provide through the school and at home a complete battery of services that could include but are not limited to: counseling, tutorial, NovaNet, learning Virtues, and learning how to work independently and with others, just to name a few. In addition the children will have an opportunity to participate in animal assisted therapy, organic gardening, woodworking, metal shop, writing, reading, band, 4-H, welding, sports, drama, art, and rock climbing.
Sunny Crest Youth Ranch is a proactive environment which emphasizes the development of positive values, personal virtues, integrity, and healthy interpersonal relationships. In combination with our curriculum, derived from proven strategies, and an individualized treatment plan, ranchers will have the opportunity to be involved in extracurricular activities like sports, music, drama, 4-H, Scouts, local churches and youth activity groups. Within their Sunny Crest families, ranchers will find the consistent expectations, supervision and support they need in order to advance academically – structure that has been lacking in their lives until now. While all this is going on the ranchers will be in a very tight schedule, learning time management and the discipline o follow up and finish a program.
Duration of the Treatment
We are aware that residential treatment alone will fail. By providing trained ranch partners to assist the re-unification of child and family and help mentor the parents, we have a formula for success. 12-18 months at the ranch is the anticipated length of stay. For the children and the family to be successfully reunited there must be improvement by both the child and the parents. It is important that the parents demonstrate that they can offer a stable and safe living environment. The Ranch will have a group of trained volunteers to help facilitate the programs that will be offered to the parents, rancher and in-home siblings.