Dear Friends,

Over the span of my lifetime, I have grown quite weary of requests that start with, “we really need ______.” Living at The Ranches and working with kids who are struggling means that we are never experiencing a shortage of things that we need. From the amount of toilet paper that 60 people can use to the amount of food that we serve on a daily basis, the needs are ever present, and they add up. And those are just the boring “day-to-day” needs that consume our time, energy, effort, and budget. Occasionally – roughly 4 – 5 times a year – we approach you about some bigger needs. The less mundane and less predictable needs if you will.

As you have probably guessed by now, I am about to ask you to help us yet again. This time, my request has to do with the rather boring, but painfully essential, water system at The Ranches. Quite a few years ago, we were informed of our need to get roughly 3 parts per billion of arsenic removed from our water. The naturally occurring level of arsenic was above the state’s acceptable threshold for parts per billion of arsenic in the water. If you’re like me, you would probably assume that the acceptable level of arsenic for drinking water would be zero parts per billion. That is, in fact, incorrect. The acceptable level of arsenic in drinking water is 9 parts per billion and the water at The Ranches comes out of the ground with 13 parts per billion. So, roughly $75,000 later, we have been able to remove 4 parts per billion to maintain an acceptable level to be in compliance with the State of New Mexico Environmental Department.

Recently, we have been made aware of the need to do some rather expensive maintenance on our water system’s mechanisms for filtering, pumping, and storage of our water. Necessary, but not as cool, flashy and easy to get behind as a new vehicle or a trades program or any of our other requests. So, I am doing what we do and turning to you, our generous donors, to help us address the $40,000 needed to continue pulling 4 parts per billion from our water.


Heath Kull – President

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