Author Topic: Mountain Homes and Beyond...  (Read 13416 times)

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Offline Halflinger

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Mountain Homes and Beyond...
« on: October 20, 2011, 03:26:55 AM »
A friend of mine had been sent to Mountain Homes Youth Ranch for the summer, never came home, and is now "somewhere else". From what I gathered, which wasn't much, she's in Utah, and the program sounds pretty standard (supervised phone calls, level system, etc.) Anyone know anything about this Mountain Homes place?
« Last Edit: November 28, 2011, 01:00:44 PM by Halflinger »

Offline Oscar

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Re: Mountain Homes and Beyond...
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2011, 05:05:12 AM »
We have a Fornits Wiki datasheet on this place but there is not that much on it.

HEAL-online has a staff-information page here.

There is also an old thread here.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Halflinger

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Re: Mountain Homes and Beyond...
« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2011, 02:23:32 PM »
Thanks Oscar. The contract pdf in the old thread certainly throws a different light on the "positive experience" her parents claim, what with the whole ordeal culminating in a written confession.
What is the possible connection mentioned between this place and Aspen Education? they seem to be an independent. Previously owned by, a spin-off or clone? Run by folks that were trained or employed by Aspen?
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Offline Che Gookin

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Re: Mountain Homes and Beyond...
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2011, 05:45:34 PM »
Judging from Heal's page I'd say this place is part of the Utah Mormon Mafia's clique. Few too many BYU grads in the mix.

Chilling part is the use of PCS, positive control systems...

PCS being pain compliance via various wrist locks and pressure points to gain control over others.

Take a look at the HEAL information, it's tends to lean towards a WWASP connection more than an ASPEN link. Which isn't surprising as WWASP gets schools shut down so often their staff must be traveling in Gypsy convoys from school to school.
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Offline Che Gookin

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Re: Mountain Homes and Beyond...
« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2011, 05:47:25 PM »
Hold on...

How old is your friend? Because the fornits thread says the place is for 18 years old and older.
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Offline Xelebes

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Re: Mountain Homes and Beyond...
« Reply #5 on: October 20, 2011, 06:31:06 PM »
No there are two units: Mountain is under 18, Ashley Valley is over 18.
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Offline Ursus

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Mountain Homes Youth Ranch
« Reply #6 on: October 20, 2011, 07:28:10 PM »
From the program's homepage:

    Mountain Homes Youth Ranch is a therapeutic growth program for troubled teens (coed ages 12-17). On our 15,000 acre private Ranch in Colorado struggling teens are given opportunity for emotional and physical challenge. Our supportive and non-judgmental environment leads our students to view their abilities in a different perspective. Students experience success that challenges negative belief systems.

    If you have a troubled teen and need help we would like to speak with you about the positive and successful Mountain Homes Youth Ranch program.

    Admissions Office: 866-781-2450.
    [/list]

    »> See Also.
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    Offline Ursus

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    Ashley Valley Wilderness
    « Reply #7 on: October 20, 2011, 07:38:38 PM »
    From the homepage of their sister program for young adults:

      Drug Rehab & Therapy Program for Adults ages 18-25

      The Ashley Valley Wilderness program is a year round (coed) outdoor based therapy and drug rehabilitation program for young adults ages 18-25. AVW is located on a beautiful 15,000 acre working ranch in Northwest Colorado. AVW offers treatment services for drug and alcohol related problems as well as help for young adults who can't seem to set their course for their future. Young adults that lack self-esteem and direction find it at AVW.

      AVW has a high success rate for helping young adults to move on to successful lives and drug rehabilitation.

      Fore more information about AVW's program call 866-781-2450.
      [/list]

      »> See Also.
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      Offline Halflinger

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      Re: Mountain Homes and Beyond...
      « Reply #8 on: October 21, 2011, 03:53:38 PM »
      Thanks for the tips guys. not lookin so hot. Found a less than stellar review from a former attendee of AVW.  http://http://ashleyvalleywilderness.blogspot.com/ sounds like a real blast. Could be helpful to contact the man for your records, Oscar, but this was the 18+ version, so not so sure how much crosses over to MHYR.
      Again, my friend has already been moved out of there, but at least I've got a better idea of how to approach things after she gets back from wherever she currently is.
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      Offline Ursus

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      Mountain Homes Youth Ranch vs. Ashley Valley Wilderness
      « Reply #9 on: October 21, 2011, 04:28:51 PM »
      Quote from: "Halflinger"
      Thanks for the tips guys. not lookin so hot. Found a less than stellar review from a former attendee of AVW.  http://http://ashleyvalleywilderness.blogspot.com/ sounds like a real blast. Could be helpful to contact the man for your records, Oscar, but this was the 18+ version, so not so sure how much crosses over to MHYR.
      Again, my friend has already been moved out of there, but at least I've got a better idea of how to approach things after she gets back from wherever she currently is.
      One thing that is very clear, from comparison of the two websites, is that the two programs have the same address, the same phone number for contact purposes, the same two owners, essentially the same staff, and the same promotional video on both homepages (even labeled as being for both programs). I'd venture that the two programs are pretty similar save that the one targeting the younger population may be a bit more involved.

      The two co-owners (other than potential strawmen) are Rob Caldwell and Marty Bingham.
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      Offline Ursus

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      ASHLEY VALLEY WILDERNESS PROGRAM WARNING
      « Reply #10 on: October 21, 2011, 04:38:03 PM »
      Here's that not so flattering blog entry (this is a blog, but there is only one entry thus far):

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      ASHLEY VALLEY WILDERNESS PROGRAM WARNING

      Ashley Valley Wilderness (AVW) Drug Rehab Program is a lie and I want to help you before you send your child there at which point it will be to late and you will be out of a lot of money. this pseudo therapeutic program is not the right choice in rehab and I would like to advise you against sending your child there.


      Ashley Valley may show you pretty pictures but that doesn't prove much

      --------------

      Wednesday, August 11, 2010
      A WARNING BEFORE YOU SEND YOUR CHILD

      I attended ashley valley wilderness and feel totally betrayed. If you are looking to send your adult child to this program you should consider some of the following before you do so because my family and I felt very deceived after my stay there. They claim to be a wilderness program but there isn't much wilderness to it other than the fact that you sleep in a tent and make your food at a fire. They claim to take your child on hikes and do all sorts of outdoor activities and they even show you some videos on their website this is all false(towards the end of your stay the owner Marty takes you out fishing but this only happens once in your entire stay). During my stay at Ashley Valley we would go on an hour long hike once a week every other hour is spent on what they refer to as "blackout" (no one can talk to each other) during blackout you are expected to complete a packet and if you dont finish this packet you fail your week and have to stay another. These packets are the only form of help they offer your child while they are there. They also only let you speak to your kid once every other week for an hour with a therapist there they do this so your child can't truly explain what is going on at the program. The packets offer little to no help in terms of recovery they are simple fill in the blanks and define the term packets that look like they were photocopied from some random textbook. When a packet is not finished by the end of the week you are expected to stay an extra week and do the same packet again and also write a 3 page paper on why you couldn't complete the packet none of this therapeutic in any way. Also when you stay another week you are expected to fork out thousands of more dollars to the program. Which reminds me about the money side of this program the staff and the directors are paid the same amount of money I gained this information from and employee that quit because he felt that the program was a scam this pay is modest compared to what Marty Bingham and Rob Caldwell get they both have very nice trucks and wear fancy cloths and Marty owns a very very large house outside of Vernal which he offers to RENT to you when you come and visit your child (as if 40,000 wasn't enough) it is obvious where your 40,000 dollars go when your at the program they go so far as to not explain the money aspect of this to students in fear that you will write home and shine light on what your family has been conned into. Most all of the staff are not certified counselors and really have no knowledge of addiction, in fact your addiction is not allowed to be talked about while you are there if you do they fail your week and make you stay another. pretty much everything you do at this program can fail your week they do this on purpose because they want to make more money. please i wouldn't make this blog if i didn't want to truly warn people about the conning this program will do to you they make you pay up front because of this. There are many other wilderness programs out there such as outward bound and blackwater those programs are very good and you child will do nothing but hike and spend time outdoors and learn how to live in the woods while also engaging in beneficial dialogue with staff. If you are considering sending your child to this program please email me and ask me your questions don't be sold this by one of the crafty salespeople at this program. I have been to this program and my family and I will be happy to explain to you in further detail why this is a terrible program. This program has much potential and isn't as bad as other programs but for the money you pay to send your child there it is not worth it. TRUST ME there are plenty of other programs. they really exploit the whole doctor phil thing too. I WANT TO GIVE YOU A NON BIASED opinion about this program any former students or parents they put you in contact with are totally biased and say exactly what the program wants them to say they totally lied to my family and me. I went into this program thinking i would be hiking every day and learning about nature and then engage in group therapy where we could openly talk about our issues nothing could be further from the truth and the therapists they put you in contact with are not PHD psychologists which they could easily afford and are very closed minded people who try to tell you to submit to people and let others control you if you ask me this is just teaching your child to be even more co-dependent.

      I want to help you and could even point you in the direction of many other better wilderness programs for adults that aren't nearly as expensive.

      please feel free to call me at
      214 642 5474

      email me at [email protected]

      or find me on Facebook as Alex Roderer (my Facebook is goofy and unprofessional but i'm a college student so dont be discouraged)

      Posted by Alex at 11:59 PM
      Labels: Ashley Valley
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      Offline Ursus

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      Mountain Homes Youth Ranch - Information Packet
      « Reply #11 on: October 21, 2011, 11:03:22 PM »
      Well... I take back what I said earlier. This Information Packet (copied out below) makes Mountain Homes Youth Ranch sound a lot more involved than Ashley Valley Wilderness. On the other hand, I s'pose a lot depends on just how assiduously these regimens are followed in practice...

      Pdf download is 18 pages.

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        Mountain Homes Youth Ranch
        "Helping Youth Find their True Path"
        [/list]

        Dear Parent and Professionals,

        Thank you for your interest in the programs at Mountain Homes Youth Ranch. This Information packet is designed to acquaint you with the work we do at Mountain Homes and is the first step in deciding if our facility is the appropriate placement for your child.

        Selecting the appropriate program for your child is a difficult discovery experience filled with a myriad of choices. Wilderness therapy programs have some basic concepts in common; however, each program takes a different approach and their philosophies vary greatly. At Mountain Homes some of the unique aspects of our program are:

        • Operating on private land to assure the safety and security of your child. We operate on a 15,000-acre private ranch that is gated, fenced, and placarded.
        • The individualized nature of your child's treatment plan.
        • Our strong academic component. We can offer credit for participation in our program or we will work with your child's home school. If needed we can provide appropriate high school or college level curriculum through an accredited university.
        • Our Ranch Phase that allows a student to complete their high school diploma or GED.
        • The small size of our groups which allows your child highly individualized treatment. Our owners operate the program and are in our field throughout the week. Our staff to student ratio is 1:3 at minimum.
        • We are one of a few programs that are able to couple an outdoor adventure phase with an extended life-skill training experience providing participants with education, work ethics, job skills, communication skills, perceptual changes, and counseling.
        • Our open enrollment policy. Using the continuous flow model allows students to enroll and graduate at different times. This added benefit assures your child will join an existing group that is modeling positive peer culture and allows the child to obtain a variety of leadership and support roles during their stay at Mountain Homes.
        • Our guarantee: We are one of a few programs with a strong enough belief in the effectiveness of our program to offer a full two year guarantee.
        Our philosophy is based on the unconditional respect and valuing of our students. Our methodology has been tested and its effectiveness is recognized nationwide. At Mountain Homes, we do not prescribe to the treatment theory of deprivation or demeaning our students. We are not a boot camp, but have a supportive environment specifically designed to help your child overcome their negative behavior patterns to raise their self-esteem to a highly functioning level. We use a variety of life skill training tools to assist them in accepting accountability for their actions, creating a clear-cut life plan, and a successful reintegration into their home and community.

        Please feel free to contact our office at any time to speak to an admissions counselor, the program directors, or the clinical director. We hope we are able to assist you, and your child to discover a positive life path.

        Sincerely,

        Marty Bingham
        Program Director

        Rob Caldwell
        Clinical Director

        --------------

        The Program Basics:

        The MHYR program is divided into three phases. The minimum recommended stay at Mountain Homes is 84 days. The three phases are:

        • Beginning Wilderness (21 days)
        • Advanced Wilderness (21 days)
        • Ranch Phase (42 – 63 days)

        PHASE ONE - Beginning Wilderness

        The Beginning Wilderness phase can be completed in twenty-one (21) days if the student displays willingness to participate. The Beginning phase consists of the following three modules:

        Arrival and Orientation

        This step orients our students into their new environment. During this phase your child will:

        • Be outfitted and learn to use their gear.
        • Meet their therapist, program directors, case manager and wilderness guides.
        • Go through their treatment blueprint with their therapist
        • Be introduced to their group and have their group responsibilities detailed.
        • Have a few days to acclimate to the environment, climate, and altitude
        During the first 24 hours your child is expected to remain silent. The student can ask questions of their staff when absolutely necessary but are not allowed to communicate with other group members. This period of observation helps the student understand the dynamic of the group and gives them the opportunity to reflect on the reasons they came to Mountain Homes. The length of the orientation period depends fully on the student's willingness to participate. When the student is ready to begin working the program the orientation period is complete.

        Cause and Effect

        Once the student has demonstrated a willingness to participate in the program we begin a discovery process based on the age old principle of cause and effect. We explore how: Their behavior in the past has affected where they are today.

        • Setting personal boundaries and being true to their values will affect their self-respect and the respect of their parents, peers, and community.
        • Being persistent and working hard will lead to achieving their goals in life.
        • Making healthy positive choices will lead to rewards and personal satisfaction.
        The students participate in professional counseling in which they explore issues causative to their placement in the MHYR program. Our professional staff assists them in identifying and processing those issues as they begin to develop new perspectives on old patterns of behavior.

        Changing Behavior Patterns

        When the student accepts responsibility for their current situation and makes the connection that their poor choices are the reason they have had such difficulty in life we begin to help them overcome the destructive patterns they have developed. During this phase your child will:

        • Develop a personal honor code
        • Learn how to break free of old emotional patterns
        • Eliminate thoughts of failure and move past negative cycles
        • Begin to express their emotion in an appropriate way
        • Discover better decision making processes
        • Develop increased confidence and higher self-esteem
        • Acquire a greater awareness of their needs and the needs of others
        • Start talking things out rather than acting them out
        • Be in control of their emotions rather than letting their emotions control them.
        During the Beginning Wilderness Phase our students are required to accept responsibility and are allowed to experience the natural consequences of their behavior. They are given a clearly defined course of expectations and the natural consequences of not accepting the responsibility they are given are clearly outlined.

        These consequences are designed to be a positive reinforcement of the learning concepts outlined in our program. Food, shelter, and protection from the elements are never withheld as devices of punishment. It is important to restate that consequences for non-compliance by participants to program rules are always related directly to the infraction and are never punitive in nature. Our expectations of each student during this phase are as follows:

        • Write daily in a personal journal recording their observations and feelings about their experience.
        • Participate in daily group and weekly individual counseling sessions.
        • Write a come clean letter to their parents describing the students past behavior. The letter will tell in detail; untruths, habits, and acts the parents may or may not already know. The come-clean process assures that the student can proceed in treatment with a clean slate.
        • Develop and write a personal honor code detailing the types of behavior, habits, influences, and friends they find acceptable.
        • Prepare their own meals using a menu and a selection of ingredients supplied to them each week. Note: Students are provided a minimum of 3000 calories per day during this phase. We do not place limits on how much food they can eat, and food is never withheld as a consequence of behavior.
        • Be diligent about their personal hygiene by using solar showers twice per week, changing their clothing daily, brushing and flossing their teeth twice per day, and sending their clothing in to be washed twice per week.
        • Build their shelter using materials and instructions included in their gear.
        • Construct and learn to use a primitive bow-drill to build fires for cooking, warmth, and comfort.
        • Learn to identify various local plants and their natural use.
        • Make various types of cordage from natural materials found in the wilderness, and learn knot-tying skills.
        • Learn about, construct, and use various stone-age tools.
        Participants may not fully realize at the time how these skills help them from a therapeutic or behavioral change perspective. They later learn that when certain processes are followed, through commitment, determination, and hard work, goals can be achieved. For example; building a fire using a primitive bow-drill set requires a person to be patient and persistent while remaining in control of intensified emotions. Creating fire with a bow drill develops a heightened and realistic sense of self-esteem due to the natural difficulty of the task. It is a difficult task to master, but the reward of warmth, cooked food, and comfort makes it a worthwhile exercise. Survival skills are specifically chosen to bring up behavioral issues in our students by challenging previous patterns of negative behavior and poor coping skills. These processes help your child form a work ethic and will allow them to develop a perspective on the relationship of effort and outcome. They will experience results as they work through the processes of defining a task, developing goals, establishing a plan, putting forth effort, overcoming obstacles, and observing outcomes from their consistent and determined work.

        PHASE TWO - Advanced Wilderness

        The Advanced Wilderness Phase is designed to be completed in twenty-one (21) days and is specifically for students that have either completed Phase One of the MHYR program The Advanced Wilderness Phase consists of the following four modules:

        Demonstration of Learned Life Skills

        At Mountain Homes we work with our students to develop a set of life skills. Our students are given the opportunity many times during an average day to display knowledge of these skills through use of experiential games, role-playing, and life situations. The life skills we focus on are:

        • Integrity- To have solid integrity is to be honest and sincere. It means using sound moral principle and standing up for personal beliefs and convictions even if others disagree. Understanding and displaying integrity will help a student stay true to their personal beliefs rather than following the crowd.
        • Effort- The student is rewarded for effort. Our students have displayed effort when they complete their tasks to the best of their ability.
        • Initiative - Students that demonstrate initiative by doing what needs to be done without being asked or prodded. We encourage initiative through appropriate reward and helping the student understand the importance of giving support and helping others.
        • Organization- Being organized means being able to plan, keeps things orderly, and easy to access and use. Students in our camp are required to keep their personal gear and the communal camp clean, orderly, and well-organized.
        • Cooperation- Our students learn cooperation by working as a team with other students in the group. They have a common purpose and quickly find that by working together they can obtain their individual and communal goals. Everyone in our group is required to carry their own weight and as a result they have more fun and gain group acceptance quite easily.
        • Patience- Demonstrating patience is a difficult skill for many of our students to master. When am I going home? .How much further is it to the next camp?., and why is it so hard to get my bow-drill fire?. are some common phrases our students say. We define patience as being able to wait calmly when needed, showing diligence in a difficult task, and being tolerant. Simply being in the program at Mountain Homes is a lesson in patience. Our students soon learn they will go home when they complete the program, and the camp doesn't get any closer by talking about the distance, and with diligence and patience they will get their fires.
        • Perseverance- Being patient and persevering go hand-in-hand. Our students are demonstrating perseverance when they are able to continue in spite of difficulties and have the patience to complete a task to the best of their ability. Many of our wilderness skills are specifically designed to teach our students the reward for being patient and persevering.
        • Problem Solving- We present our students with an opportunity for problem solving on a regular basis. We define a problem solver as a discoverer; someone that seeks solutions in difficult situations and in every-day life. We encourage our students to use creativity, patience, and perseverance when taking on problem solving tasks.
        • Accountability/Responsibility- People that are responsible accept accountability for their actions, meet their obligations, and act appropriately in all situations. They can be counted on to clean their room, finish their homework, and complete their chores. At Mountain Homes students that are not accountable or responsible accept the natural consequences of their actions. For example, if they do not send their clothes in to be washed twice per week, they have to wait two to three days for clean laundry.

        Restoring Family and Community Ties

        The majority of the youth in the programs at Mountain Homes Youth Ranch have caused chaos in their home and lost the trust of their family, friends, and community. We work with the family and the student throughout the program to develop boundaries and workable solutions to prior difficulties. During the program our students are required to:

        • Write a come clean letter to their parents regarding their past behavior, things they have yet to own up to, and untruths they need to confront. Coming clean is an important part of the therapeutic process as it allows the student and the family a clean slate.
        • Negotiate a home contract that details acceptable behavior in the home, activities or behaviors that are unacceptable and related consequences and rewards. The family and the student commit to the home contract and it gives each a reference point if future difficulties arise.

        Academics

        Students in our program typically have emotional challenges that have had a negative affect on their academics. At Mountain Homes, we have a qualified staff to work with the student's behavioral issues while maintaining the necessary perspective to allow them to achieve their academic goals. Our program successfully integrates the emotional, physical, and intellectual needs of our students to create a nurturing environment conducive to learning. Academically, in our Advanced Wilderness Phase students have the opportunity to do some of the following:

        • Stay current on their academic requirements for their home school or take college courses. At minimum they are required to complete the education requirements of the program. Please read our section on academics for more information regarding traditional and program educational requirements.
        • Gather, record, and report weather information (science).
        • Develop, follow, and evaluate a personal fitness plan (physical education).
        • Give oral reports on two (2) classic books (language arts).
        • Write essays on a personal experience, a familiar place, and a personal character sketch (language arts).

        Planning for the Future

        At Mountain Homes Youth Ranch we provide a therapist guided program to help your child understand the relationship between education, career, money, and lifestyle. We provide each student with a set of exercises that ask real life questions about what they want out of life. They can discover how their hopes and expectations fit in the real world. This planning tool will help your child:

        • Envision their future and set specific goals to get there.
        • Understand the value of staying in school, being educated, and committing a life-long learning experience.
        • Begin the transition to living independently and becoming an adult in the real world.
        • Create a personal business plan that they can refer to again and again as their plans and ideas change.
        • Make correct choices and learn valuable lessons now, and reduce the risk of making poor choices in the future.
        • Feel comfortable asking for dialog and quality time with parents, teachers, and guardians.
        • Ask adults questions about the things they need to know.
        • Learn a process of envisioning a desired outcome, then doing the research and finding the resources to accomplish the desired outcome.
        Each Mountain Homes student completes a life plan prior to graduation. The plan includes a variety of applicable goals and a written plan for obtaining those goals. During the Advanced Wilderness Stage students live in a community setting and are required to participate and shoulder various tasks necessary to sustain the community. In this phase everyone shares responsibility equally for community living. Emphasis is placed on the interdependency of community members through using skills learned in the Beginning phase in a cooperative effort to sustain peaceful and productive life in a family setting. The positive pressure from their peers is a great motivator in keeping the student on task and the rewards of contributing to the comfort and well-being of their wilderness family are great. Our expectations of Advanced Wilderness students are that they:

        • Write daily in a personal journal reflecting on issues of family, personal behavior, and those issues which have caused disharmony in their lives and the lives of their family, friends, and community. This journal serves as a basis for ongoing counseling with your child's therapist.
        • Continue individual and group counseling as new perspectives on old values and assumptions begin to become internalized.
        • Be active participants in twice monthly family therapy via conference calls.
        • Write a life plan setting forth goals and a plan of action which addresses past behavior.
        • Begin to work on their academic needs with the assistance of the Education Director at Mountain Homes. Complete, at minimum, the academic requirements of the program.
        • Develop a plan for the future taking into account the relationship between education, career, and lifestyle.
        • Demonstrate the nine qualities (life skills) that successful people possess.
        • Negotiate with their parents to create a home contract detailing the rules of the home, consequences for poor behavior, and expectations of the family and student.
        • Continue writing letters home to family members as the emotional preparation for the return home begins.
        • Assist with menu planning, meal preparation, and clean-up as part of the community effort. Students are required to clean the campsite, dispose of waste properly, and maintain the communal camp equipment and living facilities.
        • Learn about survival food sources and water finding/purification.
        • Practice surface navigation using the sun and the stars.
        • Learn beadwork while creating rosettes, straights, and loom beading.
        Once a student has mastered the skills necessary to be self-sustaining they will experience a 2 to 3 day solo. During the solo experience the student will use their newly acquired skills to set up a one-man campsite within prescribed specifications, and to be completely self-reliant in fire-starting, meal preparation, personal hygiene, and waste disposal. The purpose of the solo experience is to reinforce the skills and strengths of the individual and to increase esteem related issues of preparedness, self-reliance, goal setting, decision-making, and follow-through.

        Parents may also choose to schedule an adventure experience they can share with their child at this time. The staff at Mountain Homes will help the family schedule an appropriate experience if desired. Some examples of an adventure quest are a river rafting trip, 4-wheeling in the mountains, a boating excursion, or a horse-packing trip.

        PHASE THREE - Ranch Phase

        The Ranch Phase is designed for students that have completed the Advanced Wilderness Phase and need additional time to work on their life skills, academics, and work ethic. The Ranch Phase at Mountain Homes is open-ended and is an excellent transitioning tool to the child's home, independent living, a residential treatment center, or an emotional growth boarding school.

        The students in the Ranch Phase are semi-nomadic and live in a family setting. They plan and prepare their meals together and determine the split of responsibility for maintaining their camps. The daily life at the Ranch is highly structured and students continue to have a high level of supervision; however, during this phase they have more personal time, more study time, and are allowed more privileges.

        During the Ranch Phase all aspects of a typical day are opportunities to apply and reinforce learned skills. The staff works continually with the student to help them understand their behavior challenges, see the need to change, and to generalize these changes into everyday aspects of their lives. Students continue weekly therapy sessions with their counselor, twice monthly family therapy sessions, and daily group therapy.

        When a student enters the Ranch Phase of the Mountain Homes program he or she will study a variety of subjects that will be useful and applicable throughout their lives. This phase of the program emphasizes vocational skills during which participants are put to work in a hands-on program where basic skills are taught and put to use. Learning and mastering these skills often requires the student to delay immediate gratification and to see the reward of persistence and effort. Experiencing the reward for consistent effort becomes an important learning experience that applies to many other aspects of the child's life.

        During the Ranch Phase at Mountain Homes students are able to:

        • Receive tutoring and complete courses according to their academic plan in addition to participation in at least one of the Ranch Phase vocational training sessions.
        • Participate in weekly therapy with their counselor, twice monthly family therapy sessions, and daily group therapy.
        • Serve, two hours each week, as a mentor/student staff to teens enrolled in the MHYR Advanced Wilderness Phase.
        • Work to provide leadership and a positive example for students enrolled in lower level phases of the program.
        • Participate in scheduled wilderness expeditions.
        • Clean and maintain their living facility.
        • Complete a list of weekly chores necessary to run the ranch household effectively.
        • Plan menus and prepare meals using nutritional guidelines.
        • Write to their parents and family at minimum once per week.
        The Ranch Phase culminates with a graduation seminar specifically designed to incorporate the student's learned skills and personal interests. Your child's therapist and the program directors will work with you and the student to design a memorable and enjoyable graduation experience for your child.

        Academics

        The academic program at Mountain Homes Youth Ranch is designed to work with all the therapeutic objectives and promote authentic learning experiences. The outdoor classroom provides a diverse physical setting that allows student to learn weather reporting (study of the earth's atmosphere), astronomy (study of the night sky) and the biology of local plants and animals. The "hands-on" experiences also help to make learning interesting and fun for the students. These experiences encourage positive expressive personal growth while making the link of learning from books to real life experiences.

        We typically find our students have emotional challenges that have had a negative affect on their academics. At Mountain Homes our qualified staff will work the student's behavioral issues while maintaining the necessary perspective to allow them to achieve their academic goals. Our program successfully integrates the emotional, physical and intellectual needs of our students to create a nurturing environment conducive to learning.

        The Mountain Home academic program focuses on Science, Psychology, Social Studies, Physical Education, Communication and Speech, Health Education, Language Arts and Food and Nutrition. In our program, students will take part in activities that will teach them valuable skills, give them positive experiences and give them the opportunity to complete written educational booklets which will give them school credit. School credits for program participation can be earned in all phases of the program. Our Education Director, a certified Secondary Education teacher with a Bachelor Degree in History and Psychology, will direct the students learning, assess their knowledge and grade their work accordingly. Upon completion of the program, the course description and completed grades will be forwarded to their school where they will determine the appropriate credit.

        In addition to the academic credits that may be earned for participation in the program there are other options available at Mountain Homes. After a student has passed their 3 weeks or during the Ranch Phase Mountain Homes students may be able to do some of the following:

        • Stay current on their school credit requirements through a curriculum provided by their home school. (This school work will be administered by our Education Director with the assistance and cooperation of the student's school)
        • Have the option to work on an academic curriculum, provided by our Education Director, which will meet the approval for the student's home school. This curriculum will accommodate for all the required academics goals of the student.
        • Earn academic credit through various Independent Study programs. Mountain Homes will enroll students that are lacking two semesters or more in order to help them earn High School credit. Some of the universities, which provide independent study programs, are Brigham Young University, Utah State University, Texas Tech University and University of Utah. Mountain Homes will also help enroll students in other independent study programs, which may be offered through other universities. These universities will work with your child according to their needs. As a parent and with the help of the academic advisor at your child's school, you will need to determine what courses they need to complete, the subjects they lack in and/or the study skills they need to advance. Our Education Director will administer the course materials to the student, direct and assist their course knowledge. Then the university that provides the independent study program will grade the student's work and return it to Mountain Homes. When all the course work is completed Mountain Homes will send the grades and course material to the student's home school for credit.
        • Have the opportunity to study for a General Equivalency Diploma (GED)
        • Students who are age 18 or older can receive college credits through various independent study programs offered through various universities. While they are students at Mountain Homes our Education Director will work with the adult student and their families to obtain the desired course, direct the teaching and assure that the proper credits are received.

        Therapy

        The Role of Mountain Homes Youth Ranch:

        Mountain Homes Youth Ranch is a therapeutic growth program that provides the struggling adolescent with an opportunity for emotional and physical challenge. Our supportive and non-judgmental environment leads our students to view themselves and their abilities in a different perspective. Each student experiences daily success that challenges their negative belief system and opens the door to new and positive self perception.

        At Mountain Homes your child is given the opportunity to accomplish different tasks in a safe setting. Students complete challenging wilderness skills that bring therapeutic issues to the forefront. For example a student may choose to give up on a task at home or school when it becomes more difficult than expected. Students are held accountable to complete difficult tasks in a time appropriate manner before she/he can advance to the next week of the program. Students will experience frustration, impatience, anger, lack of focus etc., as they work there way through these difficult tasks. The feeling of accomplishment a students feels when they triumph over the task at hand build true self-esteem and a feeling of being capable that has been absent in there lives. We allow youth to learn, not by telling them what to do, but through their own experience. We acknowledge it is not the responsibility of the parents or the staff at Mountain Homes to fix your child's life. Our responsibility is to provide them with the knowledge, skills, and structure to fix their own life. Our intervention is designed to bring maladaptive behaviors into the open and to open the student up to the therapeutic process. This gives them the opportunity to experience success and the respect of the staff and their peers first-hand.

        Our success with our students comes from helping them perceive how their actions today affect their success tomorrow. Understanding the basic rule of cause and effect will help them see how.

        • Their behavior in the past has affected where they are today.
        • Setting personal boundaries and being true to their values will affect their self- respect and the respect of their parents, peers, and community.
        • Being persistent and working hard will lead to achieving their goals in life.
        • Making healthy positive choices will lead to rewards and personal satisfaction.
        The staff and directors at Mountain Homes firmly believe in the importance of mutual respect and responsibility. All negative behavior is confronted through positive intervention and we do not use deprivation therapy or intimidation. We want to help your child break their destructive patterns and discover, on their own, the reward for honesty, positive initiative, and respect.

        At Mountain Homes Youth Ranch:

        • Professional counseling services are delivered by a certified counselor.
        • An individualized treatment plan is created for you child based on their specific needs.
        • Our trained field staff is skilled in communication strategies, crisis intervention and group counseling techniques.
        • We use tested, nationally recognized counseling strategies including H. Stephen's Glenn's successful model "Raising Self-Reliant Children in a Self-Indulgent World" that focuses on learning the significant seven:
            1. Perceptions of personal capabilities
            2. Perceptions of personal significance
            3. Perceptions of personal influence over life (personal power)
            4. Interpersonal skills
            5. Interpersonal skills
            6. Strong systematic skills
            7. Strong judgment skills
        • Students participate in daily group therapy and weekly individual therapy.
        • The family and student participate in therapy sessions twice each month.
        • Students are challenged with games and initiatives that lead them to consider effective communication, self-analysis, healthy competition/teamwork, and conflict resolution.

        The Role of the Parents:

        The success of your child depends greatly on your willingness to grow and change with them. At Mountain Homes we work with the family to develop a success plan - not just with the acting-out teen. As a parent we ask that you be willing to.

        • Communicate with your child often. Write to them at least once a week and encourage other members of their support group to stay in close contact with the child while they are at Mountain Homes.
        • Be actively involved in your child's treatment plan by participating in regularly scheduled family therapy calls. You will also need to set aside time each week to speak to your child's therapist, and the program directors.
        • Attend a parenting conference with your child at our facility. The parenting conference is usually scheduled when your child is ready to graduate the program. It is important that you reunite with your child in a way that establishes a high level of mutual respect and communication. Your therapist will help you develop some realistic ground rules and you will have the opportunity to reconnect in a controlled and supportive environment. You will also meet your child's therapist, wilderness guides, and the program directors personally at this time.
        • Complete a ten-week parenting course either in your area or at home through use of a video/book workshop.
        • Be willing to confront behavioral issues with your student in a positive manner and negotiate resolution with the guidance of your child's therapist.

        Parenting Course

        While your student is working on their behavioral issues at Mountain Homes we ask that parents participate in a ten week parenting seminar either in their area or in their home using a series of workbooks and video tapes. The immediate and continued success of our students is greatly enhanced when you commit to partnering with your child to help them overcome their specific challenges.

        Our parenting seminar, Developing Capable Young People is based on H. Stephen Glenn and Jane Nelsons extensive experience and research into methods for healing frayed family relationships. The Capable People program is based on the assumption that to change behavior we must first change perceptions. For example, if an individual perceives himself to be incapable and a failure, he will behave in ways that validate that perception. By teaching the child certain perceptions and skills, he or she can begin to view themselves as a valuable and capable individual and, thus, behave in a fashion supportive of the newly acquired perception.

        Using the H. Stephen Glenn strategies for developing capable people is an integral part of the therapeutic process at Mountain Homes Youth Ranch. By becoming well-versed in the methodology used in the Capable People program parents can reinforce and understand the changes their child has strived to make.

        A list of workshop dates and locations can be viewed at http://www.capabilitiesinc.com or you can call the workshop facilitator at (800) 456-7770. If a workshop is not offered in your immediate area you can order the course material and complete the seminar in your home. If you decide to complete the course at home, your child's therapist will assist you in processing and internalizing the course material. The required materials for completion of the course are a:

        • 6 tape Video Series- Developing Capable Young People
        • Workbook- Developing Capable Young People
        • Book- Raising Self-Reliant Children in a Self-Indulgent World
        • Book- Positive Discipline

        Family Conference

        During the final days of your child's enrollment at Mountain Homes Youth Ranch, parents are required to participate in a parenting/family therapy conference. It is important that you reunite with your child in a way that establishes a high level of mutual respect and communication. A therapist will help you develop some realistic ground rules and you will have the opportunity to reconnect in a controlled and supportive environment.

        Safety

        At Mountain Homes Youth Ranch we acknowledge that risk is inherent in wilderness programs. Awareness of that fact has made the safety and well-being of your child our primary concern and greatest responsibility. We take this responsibility very seriously and due to our strict adherence to policy and our commitment to continued staff training we have a remarkable safety record. We are aware of the possibility of injury and have put the following safeguards in place to assure the continued safety and well-being of our students:

        • Licensed by the Colorado Department of Human Services, Division of Child Care and have a stringent set of requirements we much follow to maintain our license.
        • Subject to periodic random investigations by the Rio Blanco County Social Services.
        • A certified Wilderness First Responder, CPR and/or Wilderness First Aid trained staff is in the field with the students at all time.
        • Staff is trained in medicine administration protocol.
        • Mountain Homes Youth Ranch has a 1:3 or better staff to student ration at all times.
        • The clinical department is managed by a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW). To qualify for employment as a therapist with Mountain Homes Youth Ranch an applicant must possess their Masters in either Social Work or Counseling. If needed students that take medication may have their medications reviewed by a psychiatrist as needed.
        • The menus are reviewed regularly to assure the students receive nourishing and balanced diets.
        • Hygiene is performed at regular intervals during all stages of the program. At minimum the students receive two showers per week, have their clothing washed weekly, change their undergarments every day, brush their teeth daily, have their feet checked for blisters and fungus daily, and have regular dental and medical check-ups if needed.
        • Every staff member at Mountain Homes is:
          • Thoroughly screened
          • Highly recommended with verifiable references.
          • Required to submit to pre-employment and random drug testing
          • Fingerprinted and have their backgrounds checked through the Colorado Registry and the Criminal Background Investigation.
          • Trained, at minimum, in CPR and Wilderness First Aid. Many of our staff have higher training.
          • Trained in communication strategies, crisis intervention and group counseling techniques.
          • Required to pass a very comprehensive medical physical with our doctor.
          • Directly supervised by the program directors that have extensive combined wilderness and survival experience.
          • A caring, supportive, patient individual.
        At Mountain Homes we are committed to treating your child with respect and honor. We do NOT prescribe to the treatment theory of demeaning students or deprivation. At NO time will food, water, or shelter be withheld from your child as a form of punishment. We believe in natural consequences and have a highly supportive environment. We do not go on forced hikes or attempt to break kids down mentally and physically in a paramilitary boot-camp type of program. Remember; our program is based on the concept of respecting and valuing our students.

        Regardless of your child's behavior they will ALWAYS be treated with kindness, respect, and care. Any staff that does not adhere strictly to our disciplinary policies will be terminated without delay.

        • At Mountain Homes Youth Ranch we have access to emergency medical treatment twenty-four hours per day through ground transport and Life Flight. Our staff is trained to stabilize an injured student until medical personnel arrive.
        • We are an outdoor experience and our programs are run on private ranch. Our program site is gated and posted against trespassing. We have placarded and mapped our wilderness camp sites and this information has been provided to our emergency medical personnel to assure they can locate our wilderness groups without delay.
        • Our staff is in constant contact with the office and they have immediate access to emergency medical personnel via two-way radios and satellite phones.
        • Each group is supplied with a specialized medical backpack that is equipped with burn spray, bug repellent, sunscreen, topical antibiotic cream, pain reliever, ace bandages, and other necessary medical supplies.
        • In the event of a serious emergency all personnel at Mountain Homes are trained in procedures to deal with severe weather, fire danger, evacuation, and defense techniques.

        References:

        We understand how difficult it is to make the decision to send your child to a place that is virtually unknown to you. We want our parents to know us prior to enrolling their child. It is important to us that you feel completely comfortable with your choice. Our program is:

        • Willing to provide references of past parents and students who have used our services.
        • Licensed by the Colorado Department of Human Services, Division of Child Care and have a stringent set of requirements we much follow to maintain our license.
        • Subject to periodic random investigations by the Rio Blanco County Social Services.
        We respect the confidentiality of our parents and the teens enrolled in our group, but have a number of parents and graduated students that have agreed to share their experience at Mountain Homes Youth Ranch with parents considering our program for their teen. Your admissions counselor will provide you with a list of professional and parent references you can call if you express serious interest in Mountain Homes.

        Tuition:

        Mountain Homes Youth Ranch is one of a few wilderness therapy programs in the United States to offer parents a full two (2) years guarantee on our services. A common question from parents is what happens if my child returns home and goes back to the same behavior? If you child completes the three phase program (minimum 105 days) at Mountain Homes, and there is 100% parent participation, and the follow-up care is provided, the odds are your child will be successful and not return to their prior behavior. If they do return home and fall into their previous negative behavior patterns within two (2) years of graduating Mountain Homes, they can repeat our 42 day wilderness phase for a minimal outfitting fee.

        Our base tuition is $325 per day. The base tuition covers your child's room, board, therapy, skill learning tools, 24-hour supervision, therapy, and accommodations.

        The minimum recommended stay at Mountain Homes is 84 days. Parents who choose to pay the 12 or 15 week program at the time of enrollment receive a discounted daily rate. The first 42 days of the program tuition are due when you enroll your student. If your child continues with the Extended Phase the tuition is due within 10 days of the student's transition. We do accept Visa, MasterCard, and American Express with a 2% service.

        If your child has academic needs you are required to provide curriculum from the Student's home school or pay the cost of distance learning courses from an accredited university. Depending on the course, the cost is usually around $190.

        College level courses typically cost around $250.00.

        There is an outfitting fee of $750/Winter or $500/Summer that covers the cost your Child's hiking boots, their sleeping bag, clothing, and their backpack. The student will return home with these items.

        Parents are advised to purchase materials for the Capable Peoples course or attend a seminar in their area. Current cost of materials range from $80.00 to $285.00 depending on parent preference in materials, (audio, vs. video).

        You are responsible for your child's transportation to and from the program. We will meet your child at the gate of the airline of your choice in Grand Junction. Colorado. If your child is 18 or older you may use the airport in Salt Lake City, UT.

        You are also responsible for your expenses to attend the parenting seminar at our facility.

        If your child needs an escort to the program you are responsible for that expense. We can provide you with a list of escorts we have had personal experience with.

        Additional miscellaneous expenses are:
        • A couple of disposable cameras to allow your child to record their experience on film.
        • A supply of prescription medication, if needed, in an amount to cover the duration of the program.
        There are situations when an insurance company may cover a portion of the cost of the program. It is the parent's responsibility to pursue reimbursement. Mountain Homes will provide you with a billing statement that contains the diagnostic codes the insurance company will need, but it is up to you to obtain the coverage. Our experience has shown insurance companies will, with the parent's perseverance, cover, at minimum, the cost of therapy during the program. We do not accept insurance payments. As parents you are the financially responsible party and have full responsibility for tuition payments. If you have questions regarding insurance coverage please feel free to talk to your admissions counselor at Mountain Homes.

        We will do our best to assist you with obtaining coverage or reimbursement.

        Location

        The field operations are located 60 minutes from Grand Junction, Colorado. Rangely, Colorado is the closest town to our field. The intake office is located in Vernal, Utah approximately one and one half hours from the field operations.

        The addresses for the two offices are:

        Base Office
        247 South Vernal Ave.
        Vernal, Utah 84078

        Field Operations
        Douglas Pass, Colorado

        Toll-Free (866) 781-2450
        Fax (435) 781-2442

        We hope this packet has answered many of your questions about Mountain Homes Youth Ranch; however, feel free to contact one of our admissions counselors toll free at (866) 781-2450 or email http://www.mhyr.com[/b][/size]


        Copyright © 2005 - 2011 Mountain Homes Youth Ranch.
        « Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
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        Offline Halflinger

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        Re: Mountain Homes and Beyond...
        « Reply #12 on: October 22, 2011, 02:03:35 AM »
        Thanks, Ursus. I had requested, but not yet received, that information. 18 pages of more heat than light. Seems to me that some basics shine through, though: All blame is placed on the kid. Importance is placed first on written self-criticism and confession, second, on what looks like mostly time-wasting activites (day hikes, watered-down academics and... beadwork? seriously?) and third, on therapy.  
        The concept of "natural consequences" rubs me the wrong way, as well. The laundry example given seems fairly benign, but how far is that taken? It seems applying that philosophy across the board would endanger the guarantee of adequate food and shelter, if say a kid lost their meal into a fire or soaked their gear. Philosophically, as well, as I can't really conceive of natural consequences existing, period, in that sort of manufactured and regulated social environment.
        « Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

        Offline Ursus

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        Re: Mountain Homes Youth Ranch - Information Packet
        « Reply #13 on: October 24, 2011, 10:34:19 AM »
        Quote from: "Halflinger"
        Thanks, Ursus. I had requested, but not yet received, that information. 18 pages of more heat than light. Seems to me that some basics shine through, though: All blame is placed on the kid. Importance is placed first on written self-criticism and confession, second, on what looks like mostly time-wasting activites (day hikes, watered-down academics and... beadwork? seriously?) and third, on therapy.  
        The concept of "natural consequences" rubs me the wrong way, as well. The laundry example given seems fairly benign, but how far is that taken? It seems applying that philosophy across the board would endanger the guarantee of adequate food and shelter, if say a kid lost their meal into a fire or soaked their gear. Philosophically, as well, as I can't really conceive of natural consequences existing, period, in that sort of manufactured and regulated social environment.
        I agree. Given the seeming importance of self criticism and confession (that "come clean letter" gets mentioned twice in the above Information Packet), this place appears to presume a lot of guilt. Whether or not that is warranted, I have no clue.

        There is always the danger, when an organization sets itself up as The Moral Authority on what a kid has done wrong and what they need to do to "fix it," that serious incidents of sexual assault or abuse and/or signs of dangerous physiological distress, above and beyond the systemic mindfuckery, go unnoticed, are discounted or dismissed as lying or faking, and are sometimes even punished. Consequences of that can be, and have been, fatal.

        Of course, all these programs claim that they are above and beyond that, and yet these incidents continue to occur, even in the supposedly less abusive programs. Perhaps paradoxically, perhaps not, is the phenomenon that all this emphasis on accountability and "natural consequences" is rarely, if ever, applied by the program to their OWN actions or lack thereof. I s'pose that being the moral authority on such matters must make them exempt from such self analysis?
        « Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
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        Offline Ursus

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        ...and is now "somewhere else"
        « Reply #14 on: October 26, 2011, 11:20:07 PM »
        Quote from: "Halflinger"
        A friend of mine had been sent to Mountain Homes Youth Ranch for the summer, never came home, and is now "somewhere else". From what I gathered, which wasn't much, she's in Utah, and the program sounds pretty standard (supervised phone calls, level system, etc.), other than the brief comment that "they're Buddhists."  Sounds like horsesh** to me, but Dialectical Behavior Therapy is pretty trendy at the moment.
        Ya know, I've been trying to wrack my brain as to what that other program might be, and I'm afraid that no possibilities really jump out at me. Is there any other info you have, however seemingly trivial?

        In the meantime, however, here are some thoughts:

        The comment that "they're Buddhists," outside of at first glance being completely oxymoronic, actually suggests to me that it is a very small program, with the owners perhaps considering themselves Buddhists, as opposed to a program per se portraying itself as Buddhist. Moreover, this kind of info might not have been communicated, or known, when it came to describing a larger program, or one that is under the umbrella of a larger organization with more standardized propaganda prepared for parental consumption.

        If it *is* under the umbrella of a larger organization, Aspen Ed (owned by CRC Health Group) or CEDU (now owned by UHS, Inc.) would appear as more likely candidates for that role than the Mormon-influenced cabal of WWASPS, et al. There are also smaller organizations operating programs in Utah, e.g. InnerChange (previously known as Solacium Holdings), which has links to both WWASPS and Aspen, and CERTS.

        It bears noting, however, that Rob Caldwell, one of the Mountain View owners, appears to have links to the Utah juvie system by virtue of his previous job history. That generally speaks of Mormon connections, one way or another...
        « Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
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