March 7, 2013 01:57 by Rob
Our Parent Retreat is rapidly approaching and you do not want to miss the opportunity to receive specific training on how best to intervene with your child while creating meaningful and safe experiences. The Retreat begins on Wednesday afternoon (5:15-7:30pm) where parents will enjoy our Parent Orientation and receive information on the expectations of treatment, clinical model, and ways to be an asset in the treatment journey. The orientation is a great time to get to know other parents and become familiar with the CALO family.
The following day, Thursday, begins the official start of the Parent Retreat. It begins early (breakfast starting at 8:15am) and it starts off with an interactive seminar called “Equipped to Connect; Training for Parents” where parents will receive specific training on how to intervene effectively with your child. This time will be geared to providing training on what to do when things are getting tense and your child is becoming dysregulated, ready to blow, shut down, angry, etc. The seminar will provide a framework for interacting in ways that allow the parents to set and keep safe boundaries and expectations while creating a meaningful experience. The seminar is followed by a host of experiential activities to practice these interventions and eat, play, and engage with others from CALO. This experience ends on Friday afternoon with a final gathering and a slide show that captures the power of the retreat. This truly is a time not to miss and is an integral part of the CALO experience. Schedule the date and let your therapist know that you will be attending. More details will be available soon. We look forward to seeing you there.
January 11, 2013 02:21 by Rob
SEMINAR (March 1st, 2013) – “PARENT TRAINING”
The Parent Seminar is rapidly approaching (March 1st, 2013) and the focus is “Parent Training”. This is the perfect opportunity to engage in hands on training exactly the way our staff receive it. We are excited to have our Residential and Clinical departments combine and provide parents with specific training principles and techniques for creating safety, connection, and repair with your student. The seminar starts at 12:15pm where we enjoy a delicious lunch and then participate in learning how to intervene with students when things are calm, not calm, and getting down right out of control. Come and learn how to proactively get a head of dysregulation and maintain an environment of nurturing and care.
The seminar portion will conclude at 2:00pm where we will take a short break and then gather into smaller groups to experience the supportive strength of our Parent Support Groups. Having parents participate in these Support groups has been shown to be some of the most impactful moments in treatment for parents. This is a time that should not be missed. Please notify your therapist of your attendance as soon as you can. Look forward to seeing you then.
“Never let your memories be greater than your dreams”
On Wednesday November 21, from 12:30-2pm, we will explore what this quote means with regards to CALO’s academic department. The presentation will focus on the evolution of CALO academics. We will be discussing the past, present and future of academics at CALO. Highlighting all of the exciting successes happening in the academic department and exploring ideas for the future will be our primary goals. After the presentation, all teachers will be available for small group discussion and one-on-one conversations. This will be a great time to ask any questions regarding your child’s academic progress or address any concerns. We look forward to seeing you in November!
October 11, 2012 20:55 by Rob
Thanksgiving is rapidly approaching and it is a terrific time to be a part of the CALO family and participate in our Parent Seminar and Support Group on Wednesday November 21, 2012. The Parent Seminar (12:30-2pm) will focus primarily on Academics and how the educational aspect of treatment is integral to the CALO experience. This time will be a tremendous opportunity to become intimately familiar with the CALO Academic program, it's philosophy, implementation, relevance to attachment and trauma treatment, and it's teachers and administration. Immediately following the Parent Seminar will be the Parent Support Group (2:15-3:30pm) which is therapist led and is a valuable time for parents to receive support and connect with other parents. These are significant events in the course of a family's treatment that should not be missed. Please notify your primary therapist of your intention to attend. We look forward to seeing you in November.
P.S. The Thanksgiving meal has always been spectacular and not to be missed. Our Chef consistently puts on an amazing feast for all of us to bond over and enjoy.
As Natasha approaches the end of her time at CALO I find myself feeling proud to be able to say that we are part of the CALO family and I can tell you that you will have two advocates should we discover another family who is looking for help for a child struggling with attachment issues. You really are building a much needed, quality program.
It seems like after every parent retreat that I attend I feel a need to drop you a line. This retreat is no different except that most of the comments I want to share have nothing to do with the retreat (even though it was another powerful, wonderful experience for Natasha and I), but with all the events and activities that I got to participate in while being on campus Wednesday. I wanted to tell you that I was so impressed with what I saw while being able to observe a student council meeting. I can’t believe that I was fortunate enough to be at CALO during one of these meetings and then to be allowed to attend as Natasha’s parent. Natasha does not share much detail of her daily life with me and even when I ask specifically about student council, she struggles to come up with much to share. I was so pleased to experience the level of respect that filled the conference room during the meeting. I know I should not have been surprised by this because high levels of respect have always flowed from the top down throughout all CALO activities that I have been lucky enough to attend. I found it hard to keep my composure while the students discussed the self-harm recommendation. This issue is one that is close to my heart and to hear the kids really think through the issue and be willing to share their personal experience was powerful for me. I will be curious to see what decisions are made on this recommendation down the road. I just really wanted to thank CALO once again for offering a real student council experience to our kids and frankly, at least some of the issues that are discussed in the CALO student council are far bigger than those of a regular student council like what should be the homecoming theme or what colors should be used for the prom. I know that Natasha never would have been elected to student council at her high school and if she had been elected earlier to the CALO student council, she never would have spoken up and shared her thoughts. I was so proud to see her speak up on several occasions. She seemed to speak for herself at some points and as the Robin’s girl’s team representative at other points. From a parent’s perspective, that was wonderful. I know that she can now speak up because all the staff in attendance have treated her with care and respect over the long haul and she has now experienced that she will not be shot down just for sharing her ideas. What a gift to a child who still, after all this time struggles to believe that she has value as a human being! Thank you to all involved. Just by a fluke of timing, you were able to gift a proud mom too! Very soon now, another student will be able to represent the Robin’s girl’s team and I hope their experience will be as positive as Natasha’s has been.
Wednesday was quite the day for me because I had no idea that I would also be on campus to witness the ground breaking ceremony for the new gym, school and canine facilities. I was so tickled to see the kids get to participate in the event by doing the fly ball competition and I again, had a hard time keeping my composure as I listened to the kids share their stories. It is wonderful to see CALO moving in this direction and I know that Natasha would have loved to have regular access to a real gym during her time at CALO. Perhaps somewhere down the road Natasha and I will be able to return to CALO to see how this new facility and the added living quarters turned out. These are exciting times for you and the other CALO founders as you see your dream really take flight and grow, but these are also exiting times for the CALO family at large and I am so pleased to be part of that family. As Natasha approaches the end of her time at CALO I find myself feeling proud to be able to say that we are part of the CALO family and I can tell you that you will have two advocates should we discover another family who is looking for help for a child struggling with attachment issues. You really are building a much needed, quality program.
September 14, 2012 23:33 by Nicole
Nestled overlooking the Lake of the Ozarks is a residential treatment center that focuses on teen attachment disorder. Because of traumatic circumstances, some teens do not understand what it means to have healthy meaningful relationships. Change Academy Lake of the Ozarks, CALO, aims to help teens realize how to have healthy relationships and transition back into their everyday lives. The program's goal is to be a place that takes care of students who feel broken and to ultimately help them and their entire families heal.
About 90 percent of the students that find their way to CALO are adopted. According to Co-Founder and Senior Vice-President, Ken Huey, many simply "do not know how to do relationships." That's when CALO steps in. Students ages 13 through 18 stay for an average of 16 to 20 months.
Through various activities, classes and counseling sessions, the students learn ways to cope with their circumstances and how to create healthy reciprocal relationships. One activity teaches the students what it means to love unconditionally. Students work with golden retrievers and find that taking care of and bonding with an animal is very therapeutic . Bonding with their dog, teaching their dog skills and simply loving on them, teaches the students how to care for someone else. The students are then encouraged to transfer that skill to relationships with others particularly their families.
CALO is expanding their facility adding a building that will house more students and a NBA size gym to include basketball and volleyball courts, classrooms and a canine facility. During the groundbreaking ceremony on Wednesday, students spoke of the impact that CALO has had on their lives. "They come here to put their lives in order," Huey said.
One student said that he found CALO when he realized that he "needed more help." The opportunities that CALO allowed helped him heal from the pain of his past. "I have been to other programs. They do not have the same opportunities that we have here. I'm very glad I found CALO," he said.
Another student who had a hard time of adjusting to being adopted into an American home said that she found herself living two different lives and having a surface relationship with her adoptive family. "I chose an unhealthy path that led me down a very dangerous road," she said. "I was out of control," she added. More than a year ago, she ran away from home. That was when she finally realized that she needed help. For her, CALO has taught her to "take down the mask and [has] given me the tools I need," she said.
She said is now looking forward to her second chance at life because she knows she will succeed.
The program's goal is to get the students back into their homes to continue cultivating healthy relationships even after they graduate from the program.
CALO is somewhat hidden at the lake and is virtually unknown to most residents, but that does not discount the work that is being done there. Over 125 people are employed at CALO, which makes them one of the five largest employers in the lake area.
For more information about CALO, visit www.caloteens.com.
August 16, 2012 19:26 by Rob
PARENT RETREAT REMINDER!
The upcoming Fall Parent Retreat is rapidly approaching and we want to make sure that we have you down for attending. The Retreat begins with the Parent Orientation on September 12th (5:15-7:30pm) where parents engage in a seminar about being a part of the CALO experience. On the morning of Thursday, September 13th all parents will arrive at CALO for breakfast and an exciting, interactive experience with Persogenics and what type of personality (Amiable, Analytical, Dominate, or Expressive) you are and how best to communicate with others. This presentation launches us into a meaningful and activity filled retreat focused on Experiencing Healthy Intimacy. The Retreat concludes on Friday September 14th at approximately 3pm, but leaves time for families to enjoy visitations over the remainder of the weekend. This time will be extremely valuable for connecting with you student as well as with CALO therapists, staff, and administration.
You will not want to miss out on this great experience. Please notify your treating therapist of your attendance and feel free to ask them any questions you have about the Parent Retreat.
August 10, 2012 22:16 by Landon
As some of know, Jordan V. graciously stepped in as the interim Recreation Therapy Director after Caleb departed CALO to pursue his Master's Degree last fall. Jordan has filled in nicely and helped the program stay on course. Jordan has been the constant, stable force in the recreation therapy department for a few years now and we are very blessed to have him.
We have been targeting master-level and/or certified leaders to run recreation therapy in order to have the department continue to grow in quality and in reputation. It is my pleasure to inform you that our very own Michael Koehler is going to be CALO’s Recreation Therapy Director beginning August 27th. Until now, some of you have known Michael as a CALO therapist but you may not know Michael’s background has perfectly set him up for the Recreation Therapy Director position.
Michael has immense passion, interest and experience in working with youth in experiential and outdoor adventure settings for over a decade. Upon completing his Peace Corps service in Thailand, Michael worked at a wilderness therapy company in Utah to begin accumulating experience in the field. As a field instructor working with at-risk youth in the high Utah desert, Michael mastered survival skills such as friction fire and leave-no-trace camping. Michael then went on to earn his Master’s degree from Naropa University in Transpersonal Counseling Psychology with an emphasis in Wilderness Therapy. As part of his graduate education, Michael learned to use therapeutic interventions with youth in equine, rock climbing, high-ropes, mountains, canyons, river and rites of passage to facilitate therapeutic, healing relationships with nature and self.
Since graduating with his Masters, Michael has worked as a mentor to young adult males in the Colorado Rockies and has led groups of high school students in wilderness excursions; teaching environmental education and ecology. In the Spring of 2011, Michael was recruited to work as a therapist at CALO where he has learned, grown and become intimate with the CALO therapeutic model and all it strives to achieve in healing relationships. Michael has witnessed firsthand, over many years, the power of therapeutic recreation and adventure in helping others to challenge their most difficult beliefs about themselves as well as to gain mastery and self-efficacy. It is with this passion, enthusiasm and dedication to service that Michael has turned his sights to the next adventure, Recreation Therapy Director at CALO!
I know losing Michael pains the clinical department and the students and families on Michael’s therapeutic caseload. However, as you can see, Michael will now provide a wider impact at CALO due to his skills, personality and experience. He is a great fit for what CALO needs to move our Recreation Therapy into the future. We are so pleased he has accepted this position.
June 25, 2012 01:14 by Rob
CALO is excited to announce the dates for our upcoming Parent Retreat and Orientation. Starting on Wednesday September 12th (5:15-7:30pm), we will have our Parent Orientation where new and existing parents gather to develop relationships and experience what it means to be a part of the CALO experience. This time is filled with extremely helpful program and therapeutic information that is relevant to the student and family’s treatment. Parents arrive at 5:15pm to get acquainted and enjoy dinner while partaking in the Orientation Seminar presented by CALO’s therapists. The Parent Orientation is the beginning of the Retreat experience and is a tremendous way to start off on one of the most meaningful and impactful time’s families have with their student.
The morning following the Parent Orientation, we will begin our Parent Retreat (Thursday September 13th, 2012) where we will gather for breakfast and begin a journey of fun, learning, creating, and experiencing emotional and physical growth. The Retreat is full of activities, events, therapeutic moments, and an extremely powerful parent support group. Many parents have provided us with consistent feedback that the Parent Retreats are invaluable and become a significant part of the entire CALO experience. Though the Retreat comes to a close on Friday (September 14th) afternoon, most families continue what they have learned and experienced into the weekend were they carry the momentum and growth experiences into powerful family visits.
The entire Parent Retreat experience (Orientation and Retreat) is an event not to be missed. It is a time to become intimately familiar with the CALO program, spend quality time growing as a family, experience time with your primary therapist, and create memories which last. You will not want to miss this opportunity, so please inform you therapist of your plans to attend. If you have any questions please contact your primary therapist or our Clinical Administrative Assistant (Kathy 573-365-2221) for details.
June 15, 2012 21:01 by Ken
In a July 29, 2011 post on this blog I let you all know about a trip we took to Mexico and some wonderful children in an orphanage there. If you type "orphanage" into the CALO blog search at the top right of the blog page you can find that post easily. Well, as you can see, we got to go back last month and help out again. It was a second, simply amazing experience there. Most of the children are kids we met last time. They remembered us and wanted to play and interact in many of the same ways. I played soccer with some teenage boys (they beat the tar out of me). Nicole and others played volleyball with the kids. We attended their church services with them. Landon had a blast pushing the smaller kids on the swingset. They giggled so hard we thought they would fall off the swings. Play and laughter cancelled out any language barrier that might have been an issue otherwise. It also helped tremendously to have Alex and his wife, Maria-Paz, able to translate when needed. It is a wonderful blessing for us to spend time and money on an orphanage that is doing right by the children it serves. Visit http://www.esperanzachildrenshome.com/ if you would like to learn more about the orphanage and even make a donation. Meanwhile, here are some pictures of our time there.
Unloading supplies for the orphanage
Landon getting a laugh out of the kids
Ken getting destroyed on the soccer field--man can those Mexican boys play
The girls with the girls
The little ones love to be tickled