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Posted April 30, 2004 

May 24, 2001

Hello Mr. Woodbury

I saw that you’ll be attending the dedication of the bunkhouse at the Mt. Carmel Youth Ranch, and I was reminded that I had never written you to let you know of our experience.

Three years ago we were struggling with our son (Child), who was 12 at the time. He had failed both 6th and 7th grades at our “top-flight” schools and was headed for real trouble.

We eventually sent him on a white water rafting trip with the Catherine Freer program, we apparently were minimizing our problems because (Child) was kicked off of the trip for being too difficult, and we sent him to a ranch in Oregon for a month. Military school was our next adventure (failed) and we then realized that we needed to take some more drastic action.

Over the summer of 1999 we sent (Child) on the Freer Wilderness expedition (6 weeks in the mountains) and received word that we were going to need to make plans for the future for him. I got online and eventually found your site.

After interviewing several programs, we were fortunate enough to connect with Mickey and Jerry Schneider at the Mt. Youth Ranch. We sent (Child) to stay with them for about 19 months (he had a ranching accident and came home a month earlier than planned). What wonderful people! We feel very blessed that they were able to find a place in their home for ….. He is home now and is a pleasure to be around, he has values, thinks (usually) before he acts and participates as a real member of the household. He takes pride in the things that he knows, and in what he has accomplished.

(Child) will attend school here now, not at the local public high school but at a smaller school. While we are sure to encounter some obstacles along the way, we really feel that (Child) has a good chance at being successful. He’ll be 16 in two weeks and already has a job lined up. He is taking drivers ed now and isn’t too happy with the kids that are “messing around” in class.

I just want to thank you for making the information available to parents like us, who often feel lost.

Naperville, California

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