“…there are organizations like Teen Challenge and others who have a far better record of dealing with social issues and people in difficulty than do the bureaucrats.”- Focus on the Family President James Dobson, on government faith-based initiatives, on CNN’s Larry King Live
“I speak from more than 20 years of knowledge of the organization when I tell you, Teen Challenge works. It is effective; it is literally changing the lives of young Americans from every walk of life. The work and dedication of Teen Challenge deserves the commendation of every citizen.” – President Ronald Reagan
“Teen Challenge succeeds when all of the government programs failed.” – Chuck Colson
“We have long been aware of the tremendous ministry of Teen Challenge. You’re doing a wonderful job. Keep it up.” Billy and Ruth Graham
“In my opinion, Teen Challenge is doing the very best all-around job of providing the kids with something meaningful in their lives, and that’s what they need. Thank you for your continuing support of Teen Challenge.” Art Linkletter
“Of all the programs reported to the commission, the most successful is the religiously based program conducted by Teen Challenge.” Dr. John Howard, Member, National Commission of Marijuana and Drug Abuse
“For years I have wholeheartedly supported the mission of Teen Challenge. It is always moving to find organizations that do not accept government funds but are able to address the problems of society with their big hearts and simple grace. Teen Challenge is at the forefront of those special organizations.” Governor Jeb Bush
“Perhaps the biggest highlight of my campaign was my visit to Teen Challenge…Teen Challenge is one of the most successful programs in our country.” President George W. Bush to CNN Reporter on Election Day
“I wholeheartedly support the efforts of Teen Challenge…they really make a difference in lives and each of us can be proud that they are part of our community.” Dr. Kevin Leman, Psychologist and Author
“I have been a long time supporter of the work Teen Challenge has accomplished and the help they have provided over the years.” John Ashcroft, Former U.S. Attorney General
“Teen Challenge is doing the job that others only talk about. Talk is good, but more action is required.Teen Challenge is a reputable institution that needs to be highlighted.” John P. Walters, Former White House Drug Czar
Travel and Outreach
One of our greatest joys during the year is taking many of the boys on mission trips, trips to speak about drug abuse to high schools, or trips to enjoy nature or our nation's heritage. Included in the photos above are some of those outreaches. The boys are the ones who learn so much from these trips, even if the goal is to help an orphanage in Guatemala. One of our cadets, Nolan, reported his experience and how it affected him...
"Guatemala opened my eyes to a world that seemed forgotten. I was slapped in the face by the firm hand of reality. The one thing I saw least was hope. But God used our whole team to bring hope and joy to the kids at the orphanage.
I realized how selfish and ungrateful we can be -- how small our problems are to the rest of the world. O saw how spoiled rotten America is. When I got back to the states I was disgusted by all the senseless junk we have in our homes and stores. hearing people gripe about petty things made my stomach churn.
My experience in Guatemala was the final tool God used to change my outlook on life."
Twice annually, small groups of students travel to a large and well-established children’s home in Guatemala, Casa Para Niños Aleluya. Often today’s American youth feel a sense of “entitlement” to all of the best life has to offer materially. Team members have a first-hand look at poverty and hunger. Best yet, they have opportunity on these excursions to help meet the needs for those in crisis.
Annual “tours” are taken to events in other states. Some of the tours past have included our nation’s Capital, San Diego, California, Alaska and Chicago, Illinois. On these tours, students will do work projects, visit children’s homes, Teen Challenge centers, homeless shelters, and in the case of Alaska~ go fishing! The team travels with staff members and sometimes their parents. What a great experience to have fished in Valdez with Dad!
Spiritual Life on Campus
Cadets have chapel twice weekly. Group Bible studies, and individually prescribed character studies give students the biblically-based character-building blocks for successful living. The individual biblical counseling is provided weekly for each student with an assigned counselor.
We Learn Better by Teaching
As cadets succeed in the program, they are given the opportunity to become part of the drama travel teams and Stay Sharp school ministry team. Stay Sharp teams travel to public and private schools to present drug awareness programs. Recently our Stay Sharp team spoke to an audience of more than 3000 students in Oak Park River Forest High School in Chicago.
Military School Directors
David and Barbara Rutledge are former pastors from Palm Coast, Florida. Following 14 years in the pastorate, they moved to rural West Florida with their three children to develop Gateway's unique military school program for struggling teens in conjunction with Teen Challenge. Together, David and Barbara lead monthly “boundaries sessions” for the
the parents of Gateway Military Academy.
Boys come to Gateway Military Schools from these cities: Portland, Albany, Boston, Springfield, Providence, Hartford, New Haven, Bridgeport, New York, Jersey City, Newark, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Wilmington, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Richmond-Petersburg, Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News (Hampton Roads), Raleigh-Durham, Charlotte, Charleston, Columbia, Atlanta, Savannah, Jacksonville, Orlando, Miami (South Florida)