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About Our Therapeutic Boarding School
Seeking placement for your troubled child can be an overwhelming task. There are many centers to choose from. Each has different strengths and weaknesses. We know that it is important to you to find the best possible placement for your child. Below is a list of some factors that set our organization apart from others. The list is not exhaustive, but it does reflect some of the things that parents often find important when deciding where their child should go. Please take a moment to review the items below. We would also invite you to continue to look through our website and to call us with any questions that you may have.
Private Rooms – It is one of the few programs of its kind that allows students to have their own private room. Most other programs offer barracks style bunk beds and no privacy. While still monitored and regularly checked, students in our program have a quiet place to do homework, enjoy some privacy, and relax.
Strong Academic Program — Our center has had tremendous success in helping young men further their education. Boys who were not able to progress in other learning environments often make great advances at Teen Challenge. Our private Christian school offers fully accredited classes which can be transferred to other public or private schools after completion of the Teen Challenge program. We also have a GED preparation track. So far, all of the students who have completed our GED preparation classes have obtained their GED on the first testing.
Relapse Prevention – Our ministry has sought special training and certification in order to help your child be successful after he leaves Teen Challenge. Staff members will work with you to develop the best possible aftercare plan for your child. Emphasis is placed on developing a plan that prevents relapse and maintains positive future momentum.
A Christ-Centered Approach — Teen Challenge is a faith-based, Christ-centered organization. Its curriculum, teaching, program format, and style of intervention are all biblically-based. This is the reason for the incredible history of success that Teen Challenge has had over the years.
An Experienced Team of Quality Staff Members – Our team has approximately 150 years of combined experience in working with troubled individuals and their families.
An Established Program and Organization – Our program was the very first residential Teen Challenge center for teenage boys. We have been helping young men and their families for over 38 years.
A History of Success – Based on federal and university studies done on various Teen Challenge centers across the United States, the Teen Challenge Program has been shown to have one of the highest success rates in the world. Success rates are regularly 20 times higher than other similar type programs.
Low Student to Staff Ratios. – In order to provide the best possible intervention to your child, Teen Challenge maintains low student to staff ratios. Our organization requires that at least one staff member be present for every 9 boys during the hours that students are awake. It is common practice to have one staff member present for every 5 boys.
Success Where Others Have Failed – It is not uncommon for our center to take in students who were dismissed from other programs. We have had good success working with students who failed to make progress in other centers or similar type programs.
State Licensed and Accredited with Honors – Our center is licensed with the state of Arkansas and has the highest possible level of accreditation with Teen Challenge International, USA. Our center received a perfect score (a 100% rating) on our last accreditation review.
Adventure-Based Learning – Our adventure program is affiliated with the Boy Scouts of America. We have received recognition as a Boy Scout Venture Crew. Our students have regular opportunity to experience fun and challenging outdoor activities. Students enjoy camping, backpacking, rappelling, canoeing, and spelunking (cave exploration). All activities are led by experienced staff and are conducted in a safety conscious manner.
An Advisor Who Works Directly with You and Your Boy – He/She will meet regularly with your child, assist him as he addresses life issues, and track his progress throughout the program. Your advisor will be available to communicate with you and your family about your child’s progress, the challenges that he is facing, and other matters of importance while he is at Teen Challenge.
Vocational Education and Hands-On Skills Training – Students are given the opportunity to learn basic vocational skills such as: woodworking, basic electrical, construction and carpentry, welding, basic automotive, and a variety of other skills.
Missions Trips – Students are given the opportunity to take part in a Missions trip. It may be difficult to imagine your son being involved in such an endeavor at this point, but as God works in our students’ lives, their attitudes and desires change. Young men who were once selfishly motivated become more interested in the well-being of others. They have an intense desire to work hard and serve others on these trips. Our graduates often refer to these missions trips as one of the highlights of their time at Teen Challenge.
Family Breaks and Home Visits – Unlike many other residential programs, we give our students the opportunity to visit their families during our regularly scheduled breaks. Extra home visits are made available as students advance through the program. These home visits and breaks give students the opportunity to try out new living skills in the real world. They also help to prevent students from becoming “institutionalized” and are indispensable to preparing for a successful life after Teen Challenge.
Teen Challenge Ranch provides effective, faith-based intervention to troubled boys with issues such as: anger problems, oppositional and defiant attitudes, ADHD, drug and alcohol abuse, running away, delinquency, and other behavioral problems.
We are dedicated to operating our ministry with excellence, safety, and integrity. We are state licensed and accredited with honors with Teen Challenge USA. All of our staff have been thoroughly background checked and screened. They are committed Christian believers who have a heart to help teenage boys and their families. Several are even credentialed ministers.
Our 31 acre campus is surrounded by the beautiful Ozark Mountains. Our program is approximately 18 months long. The first 9-12 months are done in residence at Teen Challenge and the last 6 months take place after the child returns home and enters our aftercare program. We work hard to make the transition from program to home as smooth as possible, and we desire to see each family experience a deep level of healing and restoration.
When is the Program Needed?
Raising a troubled child is an overwhelming task for any parent. They face a mixture of heartbreak and anxiety as they watch their son make poor decisions for his life. It is very difficult to know what to do. Making the decision to place a child outside the home in order to get him the help he needs is probably the hardest thing they will ever have to do as a parent. It is important to weigh options carefully.
Whether or not a child is placed in a program, parents must take advantage of this time they have to do something to help their child. It is important that parents act now to get their child the help he needs, whether they choose to have him change schools, enter counseling, or admit him into a residential program. Problems do not magically go away when a child turns 18; however, a parent’s authority and ability to get their child the help he needs is greatly diminished after he becomes an adult.
For many families, placing their child in a residential program is absolutely the right choice and the best chance to help their son. Residential programs, however, are not the right choice for everyone, and the decision to place a troubled child outside of the home should not be entered into lightly. Please consider the following questions as you make this difficult decision:
- Is your son’s behavior out of control?
- Are counseling and other outpatient treatments working?
- Are the problems your child is facing persistent or even worsening despite promises to change?
- Are your son’s behaviors placing his health or life at risk?
- Is your son involved in illegal activities?
- Have there been legal problems that have arisen due to your son’s behavior, or are there charges being brought that could lead to incarceration?
- Is your son deeply entangled with friends who are a negative influence?
- Does he keep returning to negative behaviors even after periods of time when he has been doing well?
- Are your son’s behaviors interfering with the completion of his education?
- Has there been violence or the threat of violence in the home?
- Have things reached a point where you know that something more has to be done?
Parents should consider carefully whether placement outside of the home is what is needed for their child. It is a very difficult decision. Please contact us or fill out the inquiry form on this site if you would like to discuss this with one of our admissions counselors.