Contact Name: Steve Aadland
Contact Email: steve at specialkranch.org
Contact Phone: 406-550-2224
Organization Address: PO Box 479
City, State, Zip Columbus, MT 59019
NonProfit Tax ID Number: 36-3378581
Social Media Sites: https://www.facebook.com/Special-K-Ranch-Inc-49417216556/
Website Address: www.specialkranch.org
 

1. What is your organization’s mission?

Special K Ranch provides family-oriented Christian homes, on a working ranch for adults who have developmental disabilities.

2. What is your organization’s motto?

We don’t have a motto, but we do have this vision statement: To nurture the human and spiritual potential of people who have learning disabilities through respectful relationships, living and working in an interdependent community, raising their self-esteem and making them valued citizens.

3. Provide a description of your organization including services offered, who your organization serves, service area, main events, etc.

Special K Ranch (SKR) is a working ranch that provides lifelong homes for 31 adults who have intellectual challenges. Ranch residents enjoy a loving home-life, engage in a fun and encouraging social environment, and learn from the variety of activities they are doing every day. Residents receive 24-hour care from live-in home advisors who are either married couples or single individuals. Home advisors live and work on the ranch and supervise the vocational programs.

Vocational activities include a large bedding plant operation, a native seed and seedling program, livestock, produce production, and light assembly and manufacturing projects (a.k.a. service contracts for local businesses, including Montana Silversmiths and Merco Co.). Products from the ranch are sold by vendors throughout Montana. Through working on the ranch, residents enjoy educational and productive lives while feeling a great sense of accomplishment and self-worth. They take pride in their work, which is reflected in how happy they are and by the quality of products they produce. Residents are always learning new skills because the vocational programs encompass a wide variety of projects.

Between 30 and 40 adults who have cognitive challenges (prospective residents) must be kept on a waiting list because resident vacancy is very rare.  This waiting list gets longer each year. It is a long-term goal of the ranch to add more resident homes while maintaining a non-institutional, family-oriented environment. SKR operates independently of government and United Way funding.

4. What will funds raised through Columbusmtgives.org be utilized for in your organization?

The pastures on the ranch need to be plowed and reseeded to maximize productivity of the livestock program. Your gift will go toward greener pastures!

5. Share any testimonials or great stories about your organization and how it enhances our community.

From Laurie Bogrett (SKR Resident) when asked, what made you decide to come to Special K Ranch? Laurie said, “I used to be so lonely and sad. Before I came I didn’t have anything in common with the people I worked with. I didn’t have any friends and I didn’t feel like people understood me or wanted to hang out with me. I was so depressed. There weren’t a lot of people to do fun things with, either. I felt like I didn’t have a purpose and that made me so sad. At the ranch I don’t feel alone. I love hanging out with my friends and working together here with them. Everyone works together and that’s what’s so special about it. We work as a team and we spend time together so we aren’t lonely. We have a lot of fun together, too, doing things in the community, eating out, and going to the movies. I can’t imagine living anywhere else or being sad again because I want to be with my friends here on the ranch.”
~Laurie Bogrett

“We dropped off my son Andrew this weekend at the ranch and were so blessed with the warm, caring environment at Special K. Everyone we met - ranchers and staff alike - welcomed Andrew with open arms. We're excited to see what this experience will do for him!”
~Kevin Lathrop

“Special K has been doing a fantastic job making rite bobbins, which are used by fly fisherman to tie flies, for many years now. I can't tell you what an asset they are to the business. Everyone I have met here works hard and keeps a very good attitude!”
~Justin L. Graff

“Spent a wonderful evening last night at the annual spring fundraiser for The Special K Ranch. Heartwarming to see 800 generous folks come together for an evening of fellowship and giving. My heart is happy tonight!”
~Russ Hall

“Special K Ranch will imprint your heart with things no other people or place can!”
~Katie McCray

“Special K Ranch changed my Uncle Bret's life!” (Bret is an SKR resident.)
~Laurie Richman O’Leary