Meeting the needs of children
By Bob McDonnell
Mountain States Children’s Home recently announced an expansion of their facility, located between Berthoud and Longmont, with the addition of a fifth home. This building will assist with the organization’s mission of extending Christian services to wounded children in an effort to meet their physical needs, heal their emotional hurts, challenge their minds, and teach them moral principles in order to reach the goals of reuniting them with their families or preparing for independence.
This fifth home is not the last one to be built. Mountain States development director, Phil Crews, foresees the need for two more houses eventually. Cutbacks in government money and more children in need drive this future growth, he said.
Mountain State’s cottages look like any home in a residential neighborhood. Couples, called house parents, who may have children of their own, supervise up to six Mountain States kids in each cottage. This living arrangement utilizes “a family model of care, strengthened by professional counselors and teachers,” the organization’s website, www.msch.org, states.
Children staying at Mountain States come from the Front Range, although, Crews said, some are from different states.
The overall facility is comprised of 155 acres and was formed in 1960, according to the organization’s website. Children at the facility range in age from 10 to 18 years old, according to Crews. Educational needs for the children are provided at an onsite school, and some youth attend schools in Longmont and Mead.
The sprawling facility also considers itself a farm, with a collection of cows and pigs. Caring for these animals helps teach the children responsibility and is good for their self-esteem, said Crews.
A large gymnasium and food room occupy space near the cottages. The food room allows the house parents to periodically stock their kitchens to feed their families and the Mountain States children.
Mountain States Children’s Home, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, received donations from local churches along with some grants. A thrift store on Main Street in Longmont contributes its proceeds to the children’s home, too. Volunteers assist with many onsite activities.
Sales from a large auction of donated goods help supplement some of the financial needs. The next auction at Mountain States Children’s Home is scheduled for September.
To find out more about how to donate goods or services to Mountain States Children’s Home (14780 N. 107th St., Longmont), call 303-776-6841.
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