Ethan is 17 and grew up with his grandparents, but moved into foster care after a family member got into legal trouble. Following that event, Ethan’s life spiraled downward and he came to Rawhide to get back on track.

“My family member’s arrest was pretty traumatic,” said Ethan. “The event definitely had a negative effect on my mental health.”

Ethan needed to heal from the trauma and work through his sadness, anxiety, and anger. When he first arrived at Rawhide, he was nervous, but has since seen the benefits of staying focused on his program and going to therapy.

“I’ve learned to open up and talk to people when I feel depressed, instead of holding it in,” said Ethan. “I used to not interact with my peers and the staff much, but now I feel more comfortable being part of the group.”

In addition to traditional therapy, Ethan also takes part in equine therapy, which has helped him talk through his family and mental health struggles.

At Rawhide, he is focused on staying on track academically at Starr Academy and hopes to graduate and go to college in the future. He is also enrolled in Rawhide’s automotive job training class and career development class to help him gain skills and determine what type of career he might enjoy.

“I am most proud of getting a part-time job in the community,” said Ethan. “I hope to get my driver’s license soon and someday become a welder. I think I earned Student of the Month because I’ve been doing all of my schoolwork and staying out of trouble,” said Ethan. “I’m always nice and polite.”

Rawhide has taught him how to create a support system to help him work through hard times, and Ethan said he will carry that skill with him long after he completes his program.

“I’d like to thank the donors for everything they have provided to Rawhide,” said Ethan. “We really appreciate it.”