Boulder City Magazine is a monthly publication full of information about Boulder City and Southern Nevada. Boulder City Magazine features the Boulder City Home Guide, a real estate guide to Boulder City and Southern Nevada.

Cover Story
by Christine Spadafor Clay, CEO
St. Jude's Ranch For Children

St. Jude’s Ranch for Children is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. Since it was founded, hundreds of abused, abandoned and neglected children have been given new choices, new chances and new hope.

Children are placed in St. Jude’s care through the Department of Family Services because their parents or guardians are unable or unfit to care adequately for them.

The most common reasons for this inability are substance abuse, incarceration, death, inadequate parenting skills, financial impoverishment, parent/child conflict, abandonment, neglect and/or abuse. The average stay is approximately two years but some have stayed as many as ten.

A distinguishing feature of the program is the ability to keep large sibling groups together. Sibling groups make up 52% of the existing population. Approximately 50% of St. Jude’s operating income is received from private donations (cash, pledges, bequests, trust, in-kind, stock, etc.). The balance of funding comes from state and federal government programs.

St. Jude’s Ranch recently received a $1 million make-over, courtesy of HomeAid Southern Nevada and Pardee Homes. With the help of more than 100 volunteer companies, the children were given a new and beautiful place to call home. Everything was provided, including landscaping, new paint, plumbing and roof repairs. They were also treated to a furniture shopping spree at one of Pardee Homes’ model home parks. They were able to pick out anything they wanted. Sofas, lamps, artwork, end tables and so much more. It was an extreme renovation for the children at St. Jude’s Ranch who will be enjoying this for years to come.

St. Jude’s Ranch continues to flourish because of partnerships with local businesses and committed individuals. The Boulder City Sunrise Rotary has supported the St. Francis cottage (one of the homes on the campus) for many years. They provide for the family living at the cottage by giving them outings, gift cards and providing for any of the needs they see within the home. Most recently they purchased a new couch for the St. Francis home since the one they had was tired and aged. At this time St. Francis is the only cottage to have a full time sponsor. There are eight cottages and an independent living facility that provide many opportunities for other sponsors in Boulder City to assist with all of the needs.

Over the holiday season many Boulder City companies reached out to St. Jude’s. These companies, along with special individuals like Jack and Darlene Medina, Dr. Larry Smith and the Jameson Family, really stepped up and made this the best holiday season the children have ever had. The event was named the Night of Lights and companies such as Nevada Solar One and the Boulder City Noon Rotary bought Christmas sponsorship packages for the children which provided $3,000 worth of presents, dinners, outings and much more. Other local event sponsors were BC Real Estate and Chiarelli’s Deli. It is community support like this that helps St. Jude’s take the best care of the children who have been entrusted to them.

St. Jude’s Ranch has an auto museum and a gift shop, both of which raise money for the children living on the ranch. They are in need of volunteers to continue to operate. Volunteers usually work from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. any days they are available. St. Jude’s Ranch is always in need of great friends to continue to help take care of the children.

Looking to the future of St. Jude’s Ranch for Children, the mission will stay the same — to help abused, abandoned and neglected children of all races and faiths. St. Jude’s will continue to provide healing and nurturing in a safe, home-like environment where children can learn life skills to start new lives with new chances, new choices and new hope. The dream is to expand the model of St. Jude’s to reach out wherever children are hurting.

With community partnerships, volunteers and donor support, St. Jude’s Ranch for Children will continue and expand its mission through the next 40 years and beyond.

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