A home for troubled boys on a ranch near Longview in southern Alberta is closing at the end of next month after operating for nearly half a century.
Stampede Ranch takes in boys with behavioural problems who can't fit it at group homes. Over the last 40 years, roughly 1,500 young people have stayed there.
"We are a working ranch, so all along we've used horses, ... dogs and cats, and the rivers and mountains and all of that are kind of our extra therapists," said Fawna Bews, one of the owners of the family operation.
However, the ranch has been having trouble getting the required money and staff.
Bews says the family also feels suffocated by government bureaucracy and decided that it's time to close.
The ranch's website describes its services as focusing heavily on nature and equine therapy, as well as a strong First Nations culture component.
Stampede Ranch got its name from Guy Weadick, founder of the Calgary Stampede, who owned the property when he began the Stampede in 1912. It was a working cattle ranch and a guest ranch from that time until 1975.
Since 1975, boys between the ages of 10 and 14 have been placed at the ranch through Child and Family Services, placement committee or caseworker.