Ironwood Maine Web Update

“I believe in ordinary acts of bravery, in the courage that drives one person to stand up for another”


            This week was centered on enjoying the earth and all that it gives to us every day. On Sunday, the farmhouse took a field trip to Sear’s Island and then on Tuesday, we celebrated Earth Day as a community. For Earth Day, we spent the whole afternoon outside, and even did a 5k run for charity. Also, as the quote of the week reflects, people have really been supporting each other when someone is having a rough day in all of the groups at Ironwood which is wonderful to see.  People are supporting each other in all aspects of the program such as during chores, free time, and even in the morning, if someone is having a rough start to the day. Not only are people supporting each other, but so many people are actively progressing in their programs. One resident progressed from Frye to the Farmhouse, while two others earned their blues!

            During the trip to Sear’s Island, we walked the beach, took in the sun, and even got to practice skipping rocks. It was nice to walk around and feel the ocean breeze!

            Recovery group this week seemed to have a real impact on the group. A resident shared his recovery plan with the group and we all got some good insight on the things that we need to think about while we were here at Ironwood. Not only that, but the group seemed to really connect with each other in recovery. It had a big effect on me personally, because I felt as though I was not alone in my struggles and realized that I have a team of support around me that includes staff, therapists, family, as well as friends, that are here for me on campus.

            The day before recovery, we celebrated Earth Day. In honor of Earth Day, Ironwood decided to support the World Wildlife Fund. To support the WWF, Ironwood generously offered to sponsor every runner and walker of the 5k. There were 18 students that signed up, which is over 75% of all students who were able to run. These individuals raised a total of $500 to give to the WWF! The students were able to run throughout our beautiful campus and simply enjoy the earth while they ran for a good cause. Kate V., one of our supervisors here at Ironwood, stated “I love seeing how excited people are post-run, especially because it’s all for a good cause”.  Her statement could not have been more true. After the run, everyone was excited and mentioned how beautiful it was to get out and be in nature. 

            Overall, this week we celebrated the Earth while also celebrating ourselves. We are getting to be more of a team and connections are growing by the day. This is really showing in the efficiency of chores and the overall happiness of the group. I hope that while all the students here at Ironwood are having the courage to stand up for one another and help each other out, everyone reading this can find that same bravery in their hearts to be kind to each other and to stick up for someone when they might be having a hard time. 

            *A big thank you to this week’s author, a green level resident who is growing more confident each day.  As I read this narrative, I also thought of the many new families who are talking to us about admitting their child to Ironwood.  Most of these kids are so distracted from the many things that we value here.  They are isolated, disconnected from family, they are avoiding school, and overwhelmed by what the world is currently offering.  It’s such a confusing time to be a teenager.

            However, as this young man shares, Ironwood offers your kids a chance to settle down for a while.  Don’t get me wrong, Ironwood kids are worked VERY hard…however, this hard (and healthy) work is taking place within a genuine community where reliance on one another is necessary for overall success.  Cooperation, partnerships, interdependence and the development of the understanding that you need others, just as others need you.

            It is our hope that every Ironwood resident discovers before heading home that they are uniquely talented, valued in society and put on this planet with skills and a purpose that is uniquely theirs.

            Enjoy the weekend and please send limitless support to your sons and daughters…they are doing great things.  😊