Giving children in need a chance
Big Oak Ranch exists to meet the needs of children who come from difficult circumstances by giving them a solid, Christian home and a chance to realize and fulfill God’s plan for their lives.
Big Oak Girls’ Ranch and Big Oak Boys’ Ranch are homes for children between the ages of 6-18 from across the United States.
We continue to care for our young adults as they graduate high school and enter ASCEND, which provides their college or skilled-trade education as well as life-skills curriculum. Our children are good kids who come from difficult circumstances. Children who simply need a chance. The Big Oak ministry is funded by private donors who ensure our children receive exceptional care without placing a financial burden on custodial families.
Why We Serve
We believe that every child should have the opportunity to succeed, no matter their past circumstances. Our staff is committed to providing our children with Christian services that are of the highest professional quality. We not only speak truth into their lives, but we also strive to model that truth in how we serve them.
How We Serve
Big Oak Ranch is licensed by the State of Alabama as a Residential Childcare Facility providing basic care for children who are capable of functioning in the least-restrictive family environment. Each of our homes is led by a set of full-time, Christian houseparents and includes their custodial children and 6-8 resident children.
Big Oak Ranch is a private placement agency in which the legal custodian grants the agency permission to provide primary care of the child, while still holding custody. The child must have a willingness to participate in the Big Oak family system, though opportunities for healthy communication with the custodial family are encouraged.
Big Oak Ranch specializes in long-term care, as opposed to short-term or revolving care. It is our goal that all of our children will be with us through higher education, whether that is college or trade school. We are intentional about staying connected to our children long after their days living on the Ranch, as we help our former residents remain connected to each other and to the Big Oak family.
Each child is welcomed into a loving, structured family. All of our homes operate as individual family units; going to their own churches, vacationing together, and sharing meals together in their home.
At Big Oak Ranch, we are reminded every day that we live in a broken and fallen world. But, we have the opportunity to show our children a way that leads to healing and life. This is because we serve a God who is both loving and good. A God who is unwilling to give up on His creation and has offered real hope through His son Jesus. The ultimate goal is for our children to find healing and salvation through a relationship with Jesus.
To help them discover it, we place each child with a godly housedad and housemom who are committed to demonstrating the love of Jesus through a Christ-centered family. In that family they learn to pray, read the Bible, and to give and receive love. They are given a support system that helps them navigate life and see it through the eyes of God. They learn who God is calling them to be and ultimately the purpose He has for their lives.
The Ranch is made up of comfortable, two-story brick homes, providing each child with their own bedroom. The houseparents in each home are full time, providing the child with a sense of stability and security. We provide all daily living necessities including bedroom furniture, clothing, health insurance as well as medical, dental, orthodontic and eye care and more.
Our children receive a private, Christian education at Westbrook Christian School located in Rainbow City, AL. They receive sound academic training with a Christ-centered curriculum that supports what is taught in our homes. WCS is a unique school, rich with diversity of students from all backgrounds. It serves and partners alongside Big Oak Ranch for the educational needs of the children in our care as well as children from the surrounding communities. Post-high school education and training opportunities through ASCEND are available to our graduates as we help them transform the dependent habits learned on the Ranch into independent habits necessary for adult life. ASCEND provides this training alongside fully paid college or skilled-trade education.
We desire for our children to be involved in extracurricular activities on and off the Ranch. Many of our children are involved in school and recreational sports, music lessons and academic clubs. Opportunities are available to participate in P21, our on-Ranch equine program and Big Oak Cattle.
We strive to instill a strong work ethic in each of our children by setting clear goals and objectives and mentoring them along the way. We provide opportunities for on-Ranch chores, which can be completed as a family and result in valuable teaching moments. We also assist our children with preparing to work in the surrounding community. All of our children have a savings account, and our goal is that each of them will work to purchase their own car before high-school graduation.
Our children come to us from very difficult circumstances, and this presents challenges as our children try to process their experiences. The physical healing that takes place can be obvious, but the mental and emotional effects can be long-lasting. We have full-time staff counselors ready to help our children overcome what they have endured. The partnership between our houseparents, childcare team and our staff counselors allows us to have greater influence and impact on our children’s healing process.
We are not focused on just one aspect of a child’s life, rather we provide them with opportunities to learn an abundance of skills in relation to spiritual, moral, physical, social, emotional, educational and vocational development. Our hope is that our children will not only reach all transitional milestones–obtaining their driver’s license, buying a car, mentoring younger children and more–but that they also will develop the necessary skills to become resilient leaders in their faith.
If you are interested in learning more about Big Oak Ranch and our application process for a child in need, our state-licensed social workers would be happy to speak with you.
Please don’t hesitate to call, as we are legally bound to keep all of your information confidential.
Every child needs hope.
IF BIG OAK RANCH IS UNABLE TO MEET YOUR CHILD’S NEEDS,
WE WILL ASSIST YOU IN FINDING ALTERNATE RESOURCES.
Email Our Social Work Team
BIG OAK BOYS’ RANCH
250 Jake Mintz Road Gadsden, AL 35905
BIG OAK GIRLS’ RANCH
6000 Shelley Drive Springville, AL 35146