Forest Ridge Youth Services

Business in Gruver, Iowa

Forest Ridge was founded in 1983 as a residential foster care facility for at-risk youth. The twelve-bed facility was located at our current Center location, Crystal Cottage. Adding Eagle Cottage the following season, Forest Ridge expanded to include another 12 beds and has continued to grow since that time. Forest Ridge now has the capacity for 140 emergency shelter or residential treatment beds in four different locations.

The changes at Forest Ridge have included a residential treatment specialization to provide gender-responsive services female at-risk youth beginning in 1996. Forest Ridge has since added a school location, expanded its behavioral health intervention and therapeutic services, and partnered with local providers to meet the unique needs of the young women they serve.

Forest Ridge is excited to have joined the Sequel Youth and Family Services organization in December of 2014, whose efforts to help at-risk youth since 1999 have grown to include programs in 17 states serving clients from 37 states and territories.

Founded in 1983, Female-Responsive since 1996

Recognizing that quality services are designed to meet the specific needs of the youth they serve and that the needs of young women and young men differ, in 1996 Forest Ridge chose to specialize in Gender Responsive Services for adolescent girls in the juvenile justice system.

Young women are the fastest growing segment of the juvenile justice system and have disproportionately higher needs in relation to their lower risk of threat to the public. Quality services that meet the specific needs of young women require the understanding that girls not only come to the attention of the juvenile justice or human services system with a higher level of needs, but that they also process information, develop self-esteem, and respond to service techniques differently than boys. At Forest Ridge, every aspect of programming pays attention to what they have learned about the growth and development of healthy young women.

The Trauma-Informed Care approach to services has found a welcome home at Forest Ridge, as the recommendations for female-responsive services have long included the understanding that young women entering the system have often been the victims of traumatic events, causing them both emotional and physical wounds. The specialized work of helping young women begin to heal those wounds and become healthier members of society has included a trauma-informed component at Forest Ridge for nearly two decades.

Forest Ridge Youth Services is a program in the Sequel Youth and Family Services organization.

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Emmet County, IA


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