The longer you’re involved with Christian Encounter, the more you see the lasting results of the Ranch ministry: lives changed and hope restored. Student stories fill our minds and impact our hearts, and each one affirms that what happens here yields eternal and incalculable benefits.
Now it’s time to reinvest in how we do this great work. Over the past year we’ve been gearing up for a significant push to overhaul the CEM property and facilities. Our goals include lowering overheads, displaying exceptional stewardship, and of course enhancing the experience of every young person who comes on property.
...we’ve broken down a number of the projects in the Master Plan that we’re currently working toward. This is a time of important and strategic investment--and it’s fun, too! It’s fun to see the small army of volunteers and donors that have already come together to accomplish big jobs. It’s also fun to anticipate the ways these projects can benefit the Ranch many years into the future.
Each project takes multiple pieces coming together, including planning, finances, and manpower. Our prayer is God would put the puzzle together in the way He knows will best accomplish His plans for the CEM community.
Nate Boyd, Executive Director
Will you consider joining this endeavor?
Goal: Having an athletic field has allowed our students to participate in organized team sports during the school year as well as informal recreation during the off months. The benefits of outdoor physical activity are vast, be it a water fight in the heat of summer or an impromptu game of flag football. In order to maximize the use of our field, we want to make some improvements.
Current status: A volunteer used GPS survey equipment to measure the offset of the field and calculate the cuts and fills needed to level it. The results indicate one end of the field is 15 feet higher than the other. What’s next: Level the field to increase safety; reseed the field; light the field to allow for evening use.
Est. cost: $6,000
Goal: Our rec room is separate from the main lodge building, located above the barn, adjacent to the gym. It provides an alternate space for our students to relax and recreate away from the main hub of activity, functioning as a standard den or game room. As a result of wear and tear over the years, the rec room has slowly fallen out of use, which we hope to restore through necessary renovations.
Current status: It is in the remodeling process. New insulation and walls are being installed.
What’s next: New flooring and lighting.
Est. cost: $1,500
Goal: Our outdoor amphitheater, located by our cabins and campsites, has served as a venue for graduation, church services, and other special events throughout the years. It is located at the base of a lush meadow where we also hope to build an outdoor kitchen (see #4). Because the previous stage aged out of service, we are needing to reconstruct it.
Current status: Volunteers have completed demo work and plans for construction are being finalized.
What’s next: Rebuild. Volunteers are lined up to do the work.
Est. cost: $3,000
Goal: We currently have 12 cabins and a number of campsites on our 86-acre property. In stewarding this resource, we would like to make these facilities available at a low cost to guest groups, which is a way to serve the Body of Christ and also broaden CEM’s network of friends. Once we build an outdoor kitchen, this can be a self-contained ministry area with minimal disruption to our residential program. The kitchen will include a sink, prep area, large grill, and tables and benches.
Current status: A professional is volunteering labor once materials are purchased. All-weather concrete tables are being donated.
What’s next: Finalize kitchen plan and purchase materials.
Est. cost: $4,000
Goal: We desire for the dormitory to be a homey, comfortable space our students retire to in the evening. Recently we renovated two of the girls’ dorm rooms and now would like to bring the guys’ dorms up to that standard.
What’s next: Paint, refurnish, make repairs, do trim work, and make energy efficiency improvements.
Est. cost: $2,500