Individualized treatment and holistic care are the hallmarks of the Therapeutic Residential Foster Care program. The program is designed to address the social, emotional and behavioral issues typically present in children who have been abused, abandoned, neglected and homeless.
Individual treatment plans, a homelike environment and highly trained staff all help each child gain success. Many children come to us after multiple foster home placements – sometimes after as many as eight to twelve – and some arrive two years behind academically because their caregivers simply forgot to send them to school. Our highly trained staff and on-campus tutoring programs help them catch up with their classmates. Children receive individual therapy and participate in family therapy with their siblings.
One of the distinct features of our program is the ability to care for sibling groups- brothers and sisters who often have never lived together. Many times all the brothers and sisters have left is each other. While residents of the Ranch, they see each other every day. They go to school together. They play together. Just like other kids. Just like brothers and sisters.
Six children live in each home and the home functions like a traditional family – the kids go to public school, participate in after school sports and activities, have dinner together in the evening as a family, all under the supervision of trained and dedicated staff, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
We are proud to work with the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture to provide our children with well-balanced and nutritious meals. For many of our children, this is the first time they are getting exposed to healthy foods. We contract with the USDA to serve the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), School Breakfast Program and After-School Care Snack Program for the children living in our residential foster care programs. We also comply with the new meal patterns implemented by the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 to increase the availability of fruits, vegetables and whole grains to our children. The NSLP is a federally-assisted meal program operating in the public and nonprofit, private schools and residential child care institutions. It provides nutritionally balanced, low-cost or free lunches to children each school day. To learn more, please visit NSLP.
Our Specialized Treatment Program has been specifically designed to protect and serve the most vulnerable children we serve- youth with moderate or high level of treatment needs due to substance abuse, self-injurious or aggressive actions, and other medical issues. In a system that typically places these youth in temporary hospital settings until their level of treatment diminishes, St. Jude’s Ranch offers an alternative.
Once a child turns 16 years old and has demonstrated significant progress in acquiring and utilizing life skills they may be eligible to “graduate” to the Transitional Living Program.