To some, it might sound like just an average life, but for Emilio to get where he is today it was far from an average amount of effort. Emilio spent the early years of his childhood moving from foster home to foster home, seeing 21 placements before the age of six. At 10, he arrived at Ranch Ehrlo Society.
Emilio spent the next eight years at the Ranch, and today credits that stability for helping shape him into the successful man he is.
“Every day I think about my time at the Ranch. I grew up there,” he said. “(At first it felt like) they took me away from my family, but I had to adapt – like everyone. Humans are meant to adapt.”
Emilio says he wants people to know how the Ranch helped him.
“People don’t always see the successful Ranch youth,” he explained. “When I left the Ranch at 17 I had a little struggle and went downhill a bit. But then I learnt how to adapt, and I’m doing pretty good.”
Soon after leaving Ranch Ehrlo, Emilio began working as a framer in a construction company. He spent a few summers landscaping and winters shovelling snow and even had a stint as a paver.
“But then I went back to (construction), and today I’m the foreman. I have a big truck and a big house – three bedrooms, with a big back yard and a deck,” he says proudly.
“I love my life right now.”
In 2016, Ranch Ehrlo Society is commemorating 50 years of helping youth like Emilio. A celebration event is planned for September 29th at the Queensbury Convention Centre in Regina.