Blog by Lindford Hayes, HOFYR–

The recent Heart of Florida Youth Ranch (HOFYR) Facilitator’s Class# 3-2016.  Lindford Hayes, Program Director and ARISE Master Trainer, held a 4-day facilitator’s training class at the Bowen Auditorium in Citra, Florida.  The training was very unique in that they have merged The ARISE Curriculum within their very own 5-Steps to Behavioral Change Model and their Behavior Intervention Plan to service the traumatic behaviors of foster care children placed at the HOFYR residential facility by the Department of Children and Families (DCF).

The six facilitators were trained and received their ARISE Life Skills Instructor Certification at the end of the training.  The facilitators are trained as direct care cottage parents (CP) responsible for the primary care of abused and neglected children disrupted from their families and then placed at the HOFYR by the Department of Children and Families until court ordered reunification action steps are successfully met by the family.   The cottage parent lives with the children within a ranch-style cottage environment 24/7.  They are enriched with behavioral management developmental tools to provide a system of normalcy within the lives of their children while separated.   Many of the unique behavioral goals assigned to the kids targets life fulfilling experiences that foster maximum development of the residents emotionally, spiritually, physically, and socially. Cottage Parents are expected to use common-sense parenting, the 5-Steps to Behavioral Change Model and Christian principles.

The cottage parent also facilitates life skill groups collectively along with the HOFYR clinical team during organized group settings and during the weekly positive peer culture family meetings that are conducted at the cottage.  The ARISE Life Skills material is being integrated into step three of the HOFYR 5-Steps to Behavioral Change Model (Teaching Step) to address the clinical needs of each youth as determined by an individualized 90-Day Master Treatment Plan.  Additionally, the ARISE Curriculum is being integrated into the HOFYR Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP) as a positive pro-active consequential intervention tool to teach socially correct decision making life-skills to the youth when residing at The Ranch.

Their cottage parent teams uniquely spend time with these kids 24/7 until the children are reunified with their families, adopted, or aged out of the system at 18 years of age. The HOFYR facility provides residential direct care services for 34 youth who have been disrupted from their families.