Whispering Hope Receives Large Donation


A dozen years after it was envisioned by Diane Reid as a retreat for special needs children, Whispering Hope Ranch is still growing and far from completion.

But a large donation could push the project through the next phase.


Whispering Hope Ranch was created as a retreat for special needs children.

The Ranch just received $37,786 raised by its phase one contractor, The Weitz Company, who is keeping their commitment to help raise funds.

"The Weitz Company truly believes in what Whispering Hope Ranch stands for and accomplishes with its wonderful staff, volunteers and partners," said Mike Bontrager, president of Weitz's Southwest Business Unit.

The funds will be used first to purchase drop down sides for the dining ramada so it can be used during inclement weather, two automatic external defibrillators, a satellite phone for emergencies and communication radios for each cabin.

The rest of the money will be used for the camp sponsorship program.

"The Weitz Company made a five-year commitment to raise money for us and have been amazingly generous," said Mary Clark, WHR executive director.

This spring, Weitz Southwest embarked on a "unique challenge."

Their employees, subcontractors, clients, architects and other industry allies formed four teams named after animals.

"The winning team, ‘Horse' really blew us out of the water," said Andrea Schreiner, manager of business development for Weitz.

Horse was comprised of subcontractors.

WHR is the only facility in Arizona designed and built from the ground up especially for individuals with challenges.

The facilities include camper cabins, wellness and retreat center, a dining ramada and discovery center, sheltered riding arena plus other animal interaction areas and activity areas.

Tremendous resources are needed to keep such an effort as the Ranch going, said Bontrager.

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