Cottage reopens for tween girls

by | Jul 23, 2020 | Children's Residential Center, News, Team

We are excited to share the news that our children’s residential center is expanding. Cottage two will be opening this fall as a place of safety, respite and treatment to girls ages 10 to 14 who have experienced abuse and trauma. This reopening creates space for hope and healing for up to 46 children on our residential campus. Please join us in anticipation of all that God will do to help hurting kids overcome their past.

Cottage two on the circle drive

Cottage history

Built in 1981, cottage two followed a house-parent model when it opened with Tim and Pat McKelley as the first house parents. This special home has cared for numerous children and teenagers over the past 40 years including CCHO alum and friend Pastor Louie.

When CCHO shifted to a residential staff model across campus about 10 years ago, cottage structural needs were identified to better serve our young residents. Shawn Yambor, director of residential services, recalls his time as cottage two supervisor. “The layout of the cottage made it difficult to supervise the residents. With multiple open stairways leading to the second floor, clients could run out of sight. The flooring was slick and caused staff and clients to fall when wet. The kitchen could be accessed by residents at any time as there were no walls or doors to separate it from the common area. Because of these challenges, cottage two residents (younger boys at the time) moved to cottage six as the updated layout and renovations made it more appropriate for supervising residents.”

Spaces in cottage two have most recently been utilized for art and trauma therapy as well as a headquarters for the annual Christmas Wish List program.

Reopening preparations

CCHO’s facilities team has been working hard for the past year in preparation for the reopen. Cottage two has been renovated with new safer flooring, a kitchen that is separated by walls and doors, a new layout to improve line of sight for client supervision, and access to the second floor is now secured with doors. This work was made possible in part by grants from the Austin-Bailey Health & Wellness Foundation and the Aultman Foundation.

Enjoy some project pictures and treasured art found during the renovations.

Serving tween girls

Cottage two will serve 10- to 14-year-old girls as this group has been identified as having the greatest need for several reasons. Our female cottages are consistently full, and we do not want to turn away a child that could heal in our program due to not having a bed for her.

In reflecting on the needs of tween girls, Shawn said, “Cases of human trafficking are continuing to rise and often those victims are referred to us. The female population experiences a higher frequency of abuse and neglect than males; they also have higher rates of self-harm. Girls often struggle to thrive in foster homes due to behaviors of concern such as running away, self-harm and suicidal ideation so residential care is a necessary level of care. The age range of 10 to 14 is a very complex time of maturing for girls. At times, this age group does not fit well in our teen girls cottage or young girls cottage which can make these girls feel alone and as though they don’t fit in.”

We would greatly appreciate your prayers for the tween girls who will call cottage two home in the coming months as we desire for each one to feel safe and valued.

Join our team

Our team is growing! It takes 16 dedicated staff members to serve the residents of cottage two. Treatment specialists, therapists and all the roles in between model healthy behaviors, teach coping skills and create opportunities for healing to happen. CCHO provides opportunities for promotion along with the support to further your education and licensure. We invite you to explore our various youth ministry roles and put your faith in action at work.

As we wrapped up our 50th anniversary celebration last December, Kevin Hewitt, CCHO President & CEO, shared a prayer for the future of our ministry: “We ask that You open doors that we could never even dream of opening, to help more people experience their worth in You.” We are grateful for this next step in serving more youth in need of safety and love.

If you are interested in a tour of cottage two, please contact David Walker, donor relations manager at walkerd@ccho.org or 330.345.7949.

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