stack of chopped firewood


What should I do to apply for admission?

Call us at 802-772-8350 to speak with a member of the admissions team.

For whom is Spring Lake Ranch a good fit?

Spring Lake Ranch has successfully treated adults and young adults – over the age of 18 – with all kinds of diagnoses, including thought disorders, mood and behavior issues, substance abuse histories, and personality disorders. Those who are currently dependent on drugs or alcohol are required to complete an inpatient rehab prior to admission. We approach every individual with an open mind, but the Ranch is not suitable for those who are medically unstable, acutely psychotic, suicidal, or violent.

What is the average length of stay?

While the recommended length of stay is six to twelve months, it is an individualized program. Some people choose to stay much longer and many continue in Elliot House, our aftercare program.

What kinds of therapy does SLR offer?

Therapy comes in many forms. Therapy at Spring Lake Ranch comes largely through work and community involvement, living life alongside kindred spirits and healthy role models. Along with this milieu therapy, we also have a number of clinician-led groups that meet around common challenges like dual diagnosis, managing emotions, and wellness, and our consulting psychiatrist offers therapeutic insight as well. We offer many recovery groups, including AA/NA meetings, SMART and Refuge. When a new resident joins the Ranch, they are assigned a team. Each team is led by a master’s level clinician, who meets with each resident at least once a week, one-on-one.

What help does SLR offer for substance abuse issues?

Just for starters, time at the Ranch is time spent in a sober and safe environment, providing space to recuperate and strategize for change. We offer six AA/NA meetings each week, SMART and Refuge recovery meetings, clinician-led dual-diagnosis support groups, and a recovery coach, who is available to work one-on-one with residents throughout their stay. We also take advantage of our proximity to attend meetings at the Bill Wilson house, the home of the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous.

How many residents are there at SLR?

There are 33 beds at the Ranch, though we do reserve one or two for guests or respite use. Our Elliot House transitional home has room for six individuals, and our Washington Street townhouse has individual one-bedroom apartments for seven clients. Clients in our Independent Apartment Living program reside in privately-rented apartments around the city of Rutland.

What are the costs? What do they include?

The daily fee for Spring Lake Ranch Therapeutic Community’s Ranch program is $500. The daily fee for Elliot House is $500 for the first 30 days before decreasing to $375. This includes the program fee, room and board, groups, and psychiatry. It does not include medications, personal expenses, or medical visits. 

Residents in the Independent Apartment Living program pay $120/day for the first 60 days, $60/day after that. The fee does not include medications or the usual costs of maintaining one’s own apartment: rent, utilities, food, personal expenses, and incidentals.

More specific information about costs can be found by reaching out to Admissions. Scholarship funds are available to families that qualify.

Does SLR take health insurance?

Spring Lake Ranch is a private-pay facility. Insurance can be utilized for medications and medical costs but does not cover our daily fee. We do have scholarship funds available to families that qualify.

Does SLR Accept Medicaid and Medicare?

Just as with private health insurance, these plans usually cover the cost of medication and medical office visits, but will not cover program fees.

Is there any financial aid available?

Spring Lake Ranch is pleased to offer two types of scholarship opportunities, for those demonstrating significant need. The scholarship funds are made possible by donor support and proceeds from the sale of Ranch-made products such maple syrup. Learn more about how you can help support our scholarship funds here.

Where do I go when I leave the Ranch?

Some folks may choose to step down to Elliot House aftercare  where they can pursue employment and educational opportunities while still maintaining ties to our close-knit community. Sometimes this may not be the best fit for a given resident, in which case Spring Lake Ranch will make treatment recommendations for the individual’s next step. Our residents work hard to rebuild themselves and re-enter their lives with renewed self-esteem and life and work skills. Here is a sampling of where residents have landed after the Ranch.

Can I enroll directly into the transitional program?

Direct admission to the transitional program is not available at this time.

What kind of work do residents do?

There are generally four work crews: Farm Crew takes care of our cows, sheep, chickens, and pigs, and runs the haying operation every summer. Gardens crew tends to our vegetable and flower gardens, works in the Peoples’ Kitchen to make pesto and granola for the farmers market as well as snacks for the Ranch. Gardens Crew also oversees our year-round farmers market booth in Rutland, and does most of the holiday preparations. The Woods Crew busies itself in our 700-acres of forest – felling, bucking, splitting, and hauling the wood we need to heat our buildings and run our substantial maple sugaring operation. On the Shop Crew, residents build and repair furniture, construct various outbuildings, fix tools, and keep our engines running. Other projects include sewing, cleaning, painting, landscaping, and all kinds of other work required to keep the Ranch running through all seasons. No experience is required for the Work Program – we teach you everything you need to know.

Residents who transition to our aftercare programs have access to Vermont VocRehab and VABIR for vocational services, and there are many job opportunities in the area.

Do you work outside year-round?

Vermont winters can be intimidating, but can be tackled with proper outfitting and foresight. Some crews move indoors during the wintry months, offering residents warmer options, but there will be some exposure to the elements, so proper winter gear is necessary for all residents.

What can I bring, and what should I leave at home?

Click here for a comprehensive list of what to bring and what not to bring.

Can I bring my cell phone?

You can bring a lap top and the internet is available at certain times of the day. Residents can also bring cell phones, but will not be able to access them during the first 30 days. At that point, their team will assess readiness to manage handheld electronics.

Can my family and friends visit me at SLR?

After admission, we ask that families not visit for the first month to allow the resident to settle into the community. All visits must be discussed in advance with the resident’s advising team – surprise visits present a considerable problem. We respectfully request that residents have no more than one visit per month. Visitors are welcome to join us for meals, crew and activities.

Can I take college classes while in your programs?

While we are not a school, we are able to offer residents some opportunities for completing a GED or pursuing their educational goals. In addition to adult education services, residents might take one or two classes at Vermont Community College or Castleton University, Residents work with their teams to determine whether this is appropriate, as well as discuss the timing and the course load.

Can I bring my computer and will I be able to access the Internet?

The Ranch provides desktop computers with limited internet access. Residents may bring their own laptop computer, which can access the wireless internet connection outside of work and therapeutic program hours.

What do residents do when they're not working?

A well-rounded life includes a lot more than just work. Recreation is an important aspect in all the Spring Lake Ranch Therapeutic Community programs. In Cuttingsville, we rely heavily on the resources available right at our back door, and the Rutland area offers all kinds of exciting activities. There are recreational trips planned each weekend day for residents to participate in.

Does SLR cater to special diets?

Vegetarian options – often supplied from our own garden – are available at every meal. There is always a salad bar option with a wide selection. People with more restricted diets (vegan, kosher, gluten-free, etc) should consult with the kitchen about strategies for rounding out mealtime choices.

Is smoking permitted?

We strongly encourage smoking cessation, and offer support and resources to that end. For those who choose to smoke, smoking is allowed in designated areas. There is no smoking inside any Ranch building or vehicle. We do not allow e-cigarettes, JUULs, or vaping pens.

CARF Accredited: Spring Lake Ranch programs are CARF accredited. The CARF accreditation signals our commitment to continually improving services, encouraging feedback, and serving the community.

Spring Lake Ranch is a member of the American Residential Treatment Association (ARTA). ARTA members are dedicated to providing extraordinary care to adults with mental illness.