Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Utah Boys Ranch 1981-82

While I was going to school for my Masters in Social Work at the University of Utah I worked at the Utah Boys Ranch in Kearns.  I was called a counselor, which basically meant I helped the house parents.  My second year they opened up a third home and I actually moved up in the world and became like and assistant house parent.  They also gave me a room to live in.
I started in cottage 2 with Nancy and Bob Burtron as the house parents.  It was fun, but could be hard work.  We supervised work hours, drove the van and transported the kids, had a level system we administered.  This included scoring their chores and rooms.  

t-shirt Nancy got me when I coached briefly the boys ranch team
Some things from school spilled over into work at the boy's ranch.  Some with success and some not. I brought someone from Planned Parenthood for sex education.  A big flop.  However I also brought other speakers and presentations. We tried playing basketball with YMCA but when one of the kids broke into a locker that ended that.  They had their own chapel on site.  The social worker was into motor bikes.  There was a course on site and we had some good times.  We even took a trip to the sand dunes.  We also went on other local trips, to go swimming, ice skating, and just for a drive.  Once I took the kids to Logan to meet my mom.  For Christmas we did a fireside and I sang a song with my mom on piano.  We went camping and fishing for a few days in the Uintahs.
These pictures are from a group shot, but to preserve confidentiality I am showing myself, with a mustache and Patsy and Charlie, Bob and Nancy's children.
There were lots of facilities as well.   Bob liked to lift weights and had lots of equipment.  I could never lift as much as Bob, but I got to where I could bench over 200.  There was also ping pong, and I perfected my spins and smashes.  I could beat all the kids.

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