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Wraparound + Reining Liberty Ranch

Child and Family has been providing Wraparound Services in Grand Traverse and Leelanau Counties for 16 years. We work with families whose children have serious emotional disturbances and could be at risk for out of home placement based on their higher needs. Wrap families may also be experiencing poverty, inadequate housing, domestic violence, physical or mental illness, substance abuse, trauma, unemployment, and learning or other disabilities. Wraparound helps a family bring their “people” together, forming the child and family team. The team meets regularly and develops a plan that uses the family’s strengths to work towards their self-selected goals. These plans are dynamic and adapt to a family’s changing circumstances.

Building trust and rapport takes time. It’s a hilly and thoughtful journey, but once we get going, Wrap is action-oriented and hands-on. Wrap team members help with any number of tasks and help families build their skills along the way. The strategies are as varied and unique as each family, and families begin to believe that things will get better.

Community collaboration is another foundation of the Wraparound model. Our work is woven in with that of helpers from schools, courts, relief groups, and health/mental health care providers. These partners always show up with creative and caring attitudes.

One partner that has been there for many Wraparound families is Reining Liberty Ranch. We discovered Reining Liberty in 2010 while seeking help for a Wraparound client who was really struggling, and whose team was running out of ideas. In spite of all that the veterans and founders of Reining Liberty had on their plate, they didn't hesitate to sit down to talk about our client's needs and what RLR could do to help. What followed was not just life changing for the client and her family -it also led to a partnership program that allowed numerous Wraparound youth to learn, grow, and heal every year for 13 years and is still going strong.

Reining Liberty took what they were already doing for veterans in programs like Horses for Heroes, and tailored it to help other groups in need.

In the 2 pronged program, our Wraparound youth spend half their time in therapeutic riding and relational horsemanship activities. The power of this experience for most of our youth is transformative. The other time is spent doing educational and fun service projects at the Ranch. These activities are often designed and led by veterans and other volunteers, providing mentorship, and showing kids what "service above self" looks like. The veterans of Reining Liberty are using their many diverse skills to create a healing oasis for their fellow servicemen and women and for others in the community who seek refuge from trauma.

Thanks to our grant writers and funding from generous donors, the Reining Liberty/ Wraparound program now holds sessions three times a year in the spring, summer, and fall.

"Bonding with the horses truly relaxes my children. You can see it in their faces, their shoulders and their posture, even their tone. And the friendships being made between the kids is very special"-adoptive mom

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