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July 4, 2012 –
Sierra Nevada Teen Ranch will host a benefit dinner to “ESTABLISH THE VISION for Hope and a Future. Founded by Marvin and Jan Neal, Sierra Nevada Teen Ranch is a local, non-profit, faith-based organization whose vision is to “Rescue, Redeem, and Restore Young Lives.” The event will be held at the Atlantis Casino Resort Spa – Reno on Friday November 9, 2012. Our special guest speaker will be Mr. Stedman Graham, a New York Times best-selling author, educator, businessman, and motivational speaker.
Our event will include dinner, an inspiring presentation from Stedman Graham, the history of Sierra Nevada Teen Ranch, a panel of local youth who will be sharing their dreams and desires and how that pairs with the mission of Sierra Nevada Teen Ranch. You’ll have an opportunity to meet the co-founders and board members.
We are planning on 500+ people in attendance. We would like you to consider becoming a corporate or individual partner to help us underwrite the event. Enclosed in this packet of information are our partnership levels. You can learn more about Sierra Nevada Teen Ranch by visiting our website at www.sntr.org.
Our theme for the night: “Hope and a Future.” Sierra Nevada Teen Ranch hopes to raise more than enough money to put the first home in place and improve the infrastructure. You can help us meet this goal!
Thank you in advance for your best consideration.
Marvin C. Neal, President
Sierra Nevada Teen Ranch
The opinion of the RGJ Editorial Board:
Washoe County commissioners made the right decision to approve the special use permit for a faith-based school for at-risk teens at Bedell Flat north of Reno and near Red Rock.
The Sierra Nevada Teen Ranch, envisioned at least since 2003 as a safe haven for troubled youths where they can learn to head off problem behavior, is a worthy and socially affirming effort. Early in the planning, area residents misunderstood the nature of the ranch, thinking it a detention facility of some kind. Or a strictly for-profit enterprise. Instead, it is an altruistic faith-based project by people who believe it is necessary to help.
It is unfortunate that property owners did everything they could to derail this project. They cited safety hazards, environmental impacts, decreased property values, zoning concerns and traffic problems. As it turns out, their concerns largely are misplaced.
Most people who spoke at the hearing recognized the community’s need for such a program. Much of the opposition is outweighed by the ranch’s purpose and Washoe County’s need. It might be true that the school is located in the way of a wildlife migratory path. In that case, concern is understandable. Opposition to the location on other grounds — traffic, disturbing the peace and teen safety — is not. The school is isolated, presenting an opportunity to escape troubling influences. Interaction with wildlife will teach kids about the natural environment. The school will occupy a 29-acre parcel at the end of a 16-mile-long road, 20 miles from the nearest development. It has been reported that neighbors more than two miles away will not be affected. Any argument about disturbance seems unreasonable.
The administrators have met every permitting condition attached to the project with particular attention to ensuring safety. The property will have a helicopter landing area, a licensed emergency medical technician and snow removal equipment. They have agreed to upgrade the road from dirt to compacted gravel.
Continued opposition and the slim margin of approval in the commission chamber make it clear that the project administrators have a long way to go to earn acceptance. Their best chance for success is to reach into the community, to become involved and to show the community what they’re about.
They need people to understand their mission. Those who do understand should continue their support.