Saturday, August 30, 2008


I came across a blog about this ranch. I remember somewhere that A Child's Waiting was also associated with them. ABC's 20/20 is doing a show on them on September 5, 2008. This article however is not about A Child's Waiting. They specialize in disruptions which is well documented by adoptive parents, adoptees, and others. They do advertise children for them that are available for adoption.

There is something about a place for adoptees who are considered bad seeds. It really irritates me that a place like this was created. I realize that it is probably necessary because the adoption industry creates this kind of situation. This is one thing that industry could and should change. That however would cut into their profits in the majority of non profit adoption agencies. There are current four yahoo group email lists for "rehoming" of these types of children.

According to their own website:

"The "Ranch For Kids Project" a registered non profit corporation in the States of Wyoming, Montana & Maryland with 501(c)(3) status, has established a Christian home for "at risk" Russian and other adoptees who may be experiencing difficulties in their new families in the U.S. This program was developed through joint cooperation with agencies and child welfare organizations where troubled children adopted from Russia and other countries could come for respite care and/or referral to licensed agencies for placement into a new adoptive home."

When I was checking Guidestar for information on the ranch, I could not find the ranch itself but I did find the adoption agency that does represent them, Global Adoption Services, Inc. They have offices in Maryland, Montana, and Wyoming. The Wyoming office is now closed according to their website. The ranch is located in Montana.

The Ranch for Kids charges $2,950 to $3,500 per MONTH for a child to stay at this facility. It does come with educational services. They have their own school on the ranch that works in coordination with the local school district. Therapist fees are separate for counseling of these children. Their income was 664,021 which combines the ranch revenue with the adoption agency as well. The Ranch for Kids earned $552,550 in their revenues. They work with West Sands Adoptions to facilitate the adoptions from China. This agency has been denied COA accreditation which they are currently appealing. There is no reason why they have denied approval. Interesting overall.


AngelaW said...

I curious by your statement "There is something about a place for adoptees who are considered bad seeds. It really irritates me that a place like this was created. I realize that it is probably necessary because the adoption industry creates this kind of situation."

Have you never heard of RTCs (residential therapy centers) before? It is a form of mental health therapy.

The "adoption industry" doesn't create this situation. Children who find their way into RTCs are not neuro typical children. They have abuse and neglect (sometimes very severe) in their background. I know adoptive and foster families in this situation. An RTC is better then jail which is the only other option (depending on the child's age).

They may have killed the family pet and sexually molested neighborhood children prior to their entry into RTC.

Another true story... 9 year pushed 2 year old sibling down stairs and tried to kill mom with a baseball bat.

In case you haven't heard of the phrase "non neuro typical"... This can be taken to mean brain damage or mental illness. The person's brain doesn't respond in the typical manner. When most people have the Executive Functions ( kick in, a non neuro typical brain doesn't.

When anyone is talking about beds for mental health care for children they are always taking about RTCs. For some reason the news media doesn't use the phrase.

Regardless mental health care is expensive and rarely covered by insurance. And there are never enough beds to go around. There are always children who need the mental health care but cannot get it. So parents who can afford it (take out loans on their house for example...) will use a private RTC this the one.

With all this said... I know some of the families who were interviewed for the 20/20 story. And I have known about the Ranch for years. I am neural toward them. I don't believe they are the best RTC in the world. But I know families who were helped by them.

Amyadoptee said...

I read their own website. It is targeted towards international adoptees. Try to see this from an adoptee's perspective. I don't know if they are any good. There is something just horrible in this concept. I do put the blame on the adoption industry for creating this kind of institution. I too have known about them. Just like A Child's Waiting advertising a young child staying there. Its absolutely horrible that we need such a place in the first place.

AngelaW said...

Sorry Amy... I am struggling to understand you. Thanks for being patient.

Maybe I am struggling because I have a mentally ill child. How is mental health care horrible?

The Ranch is targeted at intercountry adoptees because there was/is need for mental health care and no one was stepping up to provide the services. Having kids rooming together.. who come from a similar background helps normalize them mentally. They can see they aren't a freak. There are other people like them.

And the Ranch works with an agency for rehoming because kids do better (long term outcome study) within a family. And sometimes the relationships in the prior family are too broken. It is very hard to forgive someone for trying to kill you.

Again... how in the world is this the "adoption industry". These children were hurting prior to adoption.

Do you think that these children were already receiving mental services in their various orphanages? Or maybe you don't believe in mental illness like bi-polar, PTSD, severe ADHD, etc..? Or maybe you are saying that the children wouldn't have been mentally ill if they weren't adopted? I had a thought.. maybe you are saying these children wouldn't be here in this country without adoption and therefore it is adoption's fault they are mental ill?

It would be great if we knew the cause of these mental illness but we don't... we just don't. So in the meantime we have to help our children.

And you should realize that everything I just said applies to bio kids too. To me... there is nothing here that is an adoption issue. It is mental health issue. Maybe this is why I am struggling to understand your point of view.

Families with money use RTCs and then finally public systems like foster care, SSI, etc...

About advertising children... This one is a tough issue. child's privacy rights vs finding them a home

Foster care does ads too. Hard to place children are put on photo listings/web sites. The number of adoptive parents willing to step up (and are capable of parenting) and adopted special needs children is small.

How do you find experienced parents in ODD, PTSD, ADHD, Depresive Disorder, RAD, extreme sexual abuse, etc.. for the child in need? They need therapeutic parents.

There have been tons of studies that children do better in families rather then orphanages/foster care/long term locked down facilities. So trying to find families seems to be the right thing to do.

So far the only means that work.... photo listings. I have thought about this problem, but I don't have a better solution.

Amyadoptee said...

I think the first thing that bothers me is that it is run by an adoption agency. Second the partner agency that they work with in China has lost its COA accreditation. From what I can understand, I am not sure that they are accredited in Russia either. I am trying to verify that one.

These children need help not another adoption. Angela, I have conversed with you via email several times. I believe that you are a good mother. I don't see you as abandoning your child. A friend of mine put it into words. These children have been abandoned and yet abandoned yet again. These children are losing what trust they have with each passing day. They are building up rage and pain. I am firm believer in ranch life. I live on one. The horses here have been some real healing blessings for me. The other adoptive sister of mine, Amy as well, is working with kids and horses in California. She agrees with me on that issue. These kids need more way much more. They certainly don't need to be abandoned again. We need to come up something better than what an adoption agency has to offer. I guess too I feel their pain ten fold.

Anonymous said...

After 4 years of therapy and living hell in our home, we chose the Ranch for Kids. I give it high marks. Our child left there, went into the Job Corps and is now in the U.S. Army based in Texas. On Thanksgiving, she called to tell us how grateful for everything we have done for her. 'Nuf said.

Amyadoptee said...

Your daughter thanks you. That is good. However from a standpoint of an adoptee, this show seemed to paint adoptees especially Russian adoptees badly. Its not the adoptees' fault that this situation exists. Whether they were abused by their family of origin or at the orphanage, these children are hurt. I again blame the adoption industry for failing adoptees and adoptive parents. They are not informing them of what is going on. What these children's pasts are. My friend Angela above has been trying to find every bit of medical documentation for her child. I definitely do not think an adoption agency should be running this kind of program because that leaves open the door of corruption. I question the integrity of this woman. She charges $3500 a month per child. That is a lot of money. What is the point of adopting if you are just going to dump them in a place like this or Job Corp. That is terrible.

Anonymous said...

Most of the people commenting on here are not the parents of a troubled adopted child from Russia. And therefore can pontificate all they want to about it all and play the blame game, but let me tell you, you don't know what you are talking about until you walk in the parents' shoes. Why don't you step up to the plate and adopt a Russian child? And see how strong your makeup is after they begin teen rebellion, and begin wrecking your home life and marriage. We had absolutely no idea the depth of the problems that could come with a 2 1/2 year old darling little girl. Our American doctors kept telling us she has no evidence of fetal alcohol syndrome, yet the records told us, and not until we were in the courtroom in Russia, that the single mother of 19 had had venereal diseases and abused alcohol and was on welfare and left the child alone continually in a barren apartment. We are Christians and have never once had a feeling or thought that we had "bought" our child and should have a guarantee or abandon the adoption. We have given her love, strong moral compass and values, structure, good schools, good family life, varied cultural and arts experiences, outdoor and nature experiences, world travel and meticulous academic and medical attention. And after 11 years of searching for the answer to her social quirks, the touching everything everywhere since day one, the wandering off easily and taking to strangers easily since day one, the not responding to gentle discipline since day one, the final diagnosis of attention deficit disorder, and seeing mainstream friends dump her year after year because she doesn't pick up on social ques, her loud in your face personality that has escalated since puberty onset at age 11 along with a landslide pre-occupation with boys and yes my husband is a loving a very present and healthy appropriate father in her life, her early childhood taunting of household pets for no reason, her stealing money from us, her continual lying and seeming inability to tell the difference between telling the truth and lying. And now in 7th grade stealing food from the school cafeteria. I feel angry that you people out there smugly say "Just deal with it." So to any to any other people in my boat, and no we are not trying to dump our daughter on someone else, we still hold out hope that she can find healing and wholeness and love in life. Get support, I am now trying to become educated on the problem and find support. I'm not sure that the Montana Ranch is perfect, but it sounds like some good is being done there. We are trying to find help in our own area and keep our daughter with us. But again she isn't the worst case, so far she hasn't tried to kill us or our pets. And she does have an outgoing personality and good in sports. There is no blame in this, it is what it is. Knowledge is power and moving forward to educate prospective adopting parents and finding resources of loving help for the children who are damaged and getting support for us as parents who are trying our best to do the right thing.

Amyadoptee said...

First off, I did not adopt a child from Russia. I would not adopt period because it strips a child of their history, their genealogy, their identity, and their culture. I stand by my comment that an adoption agency running this place for Russian adoption is suspect to me. She may be doing a good job. She is part of the problem as to why the children are at her place.

I for one did not tell you to deal with it. However, YOU chose to adopt out of Russia. You chose not to adopt from the foster care system where you might have had more resources. I am not saying that you have to deal with it but you did choose it. Frankly I blame all of the Russian adoption agencies. I can't be swayed from my position. Then again I am an ungrateful little bastardly shit.