As I walked into the building that houses the living areas for the children on one of our campuses, all I could smell was pizza. You know, the sauce, pepperoni, ham, sausage, crust. I'm not sure you actually "smell" the cheese, but when you smell pizza, you know it's pizza. I walked into the staff room and there were enough pizza boxes to feed Hannibal's army.
Another Ranch saw me looking at it and said, "Help yourself. There is another delivery coming at 3 p.m. and then again at 7 p.m." Then she walked out.
Now, we try to create the best possible environment for the kids to heal and the staff to work at Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch. Pizza is one of the ultimate comfort foods, so it kind of made sense. But there was so much. It was in the staff break room, not the dining center. And more was coming. At least twice.
I went to the folks who know everything that is going on — the staff at the front desk. "Did you see all the pizza?" they asked. "It's really good, help yourself!"
"What are we doing?" I asked.
"Oh, no. We didn't order it. It's from 'B's' family."
'B' was with us through part of last year. His anger and behaviors were tearing apart his new, forever family. They had loved him even before they adopted him, but what he had endured made him push away anyone who wanted to get close... sometimes with very unpleasant behaviors. His traumas had created challenges in his mental health.
He worked hard at the Ranch, and his family walked beside him. They had wanted him to be their son, and still did. It was tough at first. Then, he began to smile, complete schoolwork, participate in treatment, and eventually went home.
After he had settled in at home and the whole family felt on solid ground, they reflected on the work the staff at the Ranch had done... and decided to flood us with pizza. Knowing there were people on every shift who had been part of 'B's' healing, they sent piles of pizza for each shift. Smiles and full tummies all around! Yup, the pizza was great.
And so is helping a child and their family succeed in the name of Christ.
Please keep 'B,' his family, and our staff in your prayers.
In His love,
Joy Ryan, President/CEO
Dakota Boys and Girls 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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