Four braided dog toys

Four braided dog toys

Four braided dog toys

Anyone who has worked in any kind of workplace has been approached to purchase “stuff” from the children of co-workers. Boy Scout popcorn, Girl Scout cookies, wrapping paper, butter braids, and raffle tickets. You name it, I’ve bought it. Actually, one of my life rules is, “Buy what kids are selling.”

Part of that is about trying to be a good person. Part of it is guilt-driven. I cannot begin to tell you the number of pizzas my oldest daughter sold for gymnastics, the cookie dough my second sold to support soccer, and the assorted goodies my son sold to support a band trip. I have a lot of buying yet to do before the scale is tipped back to any kind of equilibrium.

So, when a teenager walked into my office yesterday and asked me if I wanted to buy braided dog toys for my puppy, I answered, "Yes," without hesitating. She only had four left at $1 apiece. I took all four, gave the entrepreneur a $5 bill, and told her to keep the change.

One of my rules, when I buy things, is that the seller has to tell me what they are trying to accomplish. This young person told me she had been chosen by her school service club to represent their chapter at the national convention. She was raising money to help the chapter pay for this big trip.

So what? That happens 1000s of times every week across the country. Why is this a story?

Because less than a year ago, this same young woman was in care at Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch. She has struggled mightily with long-term depression, anxiety, and violent outbursts. Several foster homes didn't work out. Her family was at their wit's end. Even here at Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch, we were stretched by the ferocity of pain she had to conquer. 

But she conquered it. Now she sees a therapist at our outpatient clinic, Dakota Family Services, to maintain and build on the hard-won progress. And she is going on a trip.

And my puppy has four new toys.

Please keep our kids and staff in your prayers.

In His love,

Joy Ryan, President/CEO
Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch

Send a message of hope to a child at the Ranch

Hope is a very powerful thing. For kids at Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch, hope can mean the difference between successful treatment and giving up on life. You can provide hope for our kids. Your message will let a boy or girl know that someone cares and wants them to succeed. It's easy to do and takes just a few minutes! Send a message of hope to a child at the Ranch by clicking on the link above.


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