All posts by kennyturck


We’ve been posting a lot of pictures on instagram and the facebook the past few months so hopefully you’re staying caught up with the photos and progression of the growing season here in Minnesota (United States). I can’t believe we are already into the end of July and our gardens are growing well even through a weird Spring! (What Spring?!?!) We are excited to be working in coalition with a couple of other really inspiring and like-minded Minnesota-based non-profit organizations with exciting details to come!!! WOOO-HOOOO!!!! So much creativity!!! We will begin making pickles likely NEXT WEEK!!!!


pickles on the vine


Upcoming Trainings

Kenneth S. Turck, MSW, LICSW Presenting: Creative Methods in Social and Emotional Learning Based in Neuroscience and Applied Theory at 125th Annual MSSA Conference at Minneapolis Hilton March 21st 1:45pm-3:15pm and at MACMH 2018 Monday, April 16th “The largest children’s mental health conference in the nation”, DECC, Duluth, MN 1:15pm-2:45pm

DIRT GROUP is a trauma-informed, children’s mental health application based in social and emotional learning in the context of a gardening/farming/food/creative arts project. Grounded and informed by 5 major theories and recent findings in neuroscience, DIRT GROUP provides participants an experientially rich context with which to learn, practice, and master important life skills related to social and emotional intelligence and neuroplasticity. DIRT GROUP provides tangible outcomes in increased competency, preparation for life, pride and ownership, the “BIG RIPPLE” effect (opportunities to participate and contribute in the community), and social inclusion (Turck, 2011) which serve to increase overall well-being.


DIRT GROUP SOUTH GARDENS!!!! In Minneapolis–WOOT WOOT!! Growing to learn, learning to grow!!
Tomatoes, Tomatillos, Sweet Corn, Peppers, Eggplant, Kale, Cabbage, Sage, English & Lemon Thymes, Rosemary, Stevia, Thai Mint, Blue Spice Basil, Cinnamon Basil, Bronze Fennel, and more..


In his 1970 book, Identity, Youth, and Crisis, Erik Erikson, one of the founding fathers of psychology discussed how social identity formation happens in adolescence but not outside one’s social context. The vast majority of youth CRFS serves are kids that don’t have a single friend they spend time with outside of school. With this limited social context, it makes it extra challenging for these youth to learn, practice, and master important life and social skills which often results in these youth experiencing many more risk factors resulting in significant behavioral/emotional impairments impacting their day to day functioning.

Crow River Family Services is and has been a MN DHS Certified CTSS (Children’s Therapeutic Services and Supports) Provider for over seven years. CRFS provides group skills training as a part of CTSS which only limited number of agencies provide. DIRT GROUP is a trauma-informed children’s mental health application based in social and emotional learning in the context of a gardening and farming project ( . DIRT GROUP is an award-winning, theory-based service which provides a therapeutic milieu/social context/marinade which supports participants in learning, practicing, and mastering important life and social skills, returning children to a normal developmental trajectory. DIRT GROUP provides tangible outcomes not only in the forms of fruits and vegetables but in increased social competencies by providing experiential opportunities to learn, practice, and master important skills which prepare participants for life. Participants have the opportunity to make a difference in their communities by growing food, increasing pride and ownership, and experience social inclusion (Turck, 2012). All of these outcomes act as protective factors which increase mental health and well-being.

Crow River Family Services, LLC has clinics in Hutchinson, Litchfield, and New Hope, Minnesota (metro location) including experiential group skills training sites in all three areas. Crow River Family Services, LLC mental health team has extensive experience in outpatient, community-based, hospital, school, residential treatment, restorative justice, academia, and the child protection fields. Our practitioners have won awards for their work from the National Association of Social Workers and the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health. CRFS practitioners are regular presenters at state level conferences on topics related to mental health as well.