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We are committed to starting indigenous programs in every community where there is a problem with drugs, alcohol or other life-controlling issues. Our goal is to create locally sustainable programs where men, women, boys, and girls find lasting freedom from addiction and discover the life-changing power of Jesus Christ.
Select a Location
We regularly receive requests for help in addressing addiction problems around the world. After an initial assessment, we travel to the area to evaluate and prioritize the situation. We take into consideration the extent of the problem, national and state regulations, the commitment of local leaders, the support of the local church, and the potential of partnerships with local organizations.
Identify a Local Leader
The information we gather about a location is important, but primary to successfully launching a new program is having the right person in place – someone in the community who is willing to lead the process. We meet with local leaders, international Teen Challenge leaders, and global missionary organizations in search of a strong “boots on the ground” leader who can head-up the process.
Determine the Right Solution
We consider cultural norms, community needs, and local support when identifying the right solution. We address questions like: What drugs are being abused? Are the addicts teens or adults, men or women? Are they wealthy or homeless, imprisoned or oppressed? Are issues like sex slavery, gangs, or HIV predominant in the area? As the scope of the problem comes into focus, our team works with the local leader to identify the solutions that will make the greatest impact.
Although every solution is unique, all of our programs are built upon a common foundation – Jesus; and they are crafted to free a person from addiction, restore broken relationships, rebuild self-worth, and prepare individuals to live as healthy, productive members of society.
Outline the Cost
We work with local leaders to develop a budget. This includes (1) start-up funding and (2) ongoing operational funding. During the launch process, we invest as much as 100% of the monies needed to establish the program. These investments may include property, translation, printing, travel, or training costs. While we address the start-up expenses, the local leader builds necessary local support to cover ongoing operations.
Recruit Partners & Volunteers
The local leader begins developing a team that can reach into the community to carry forward the vision for the new program. With limited funding, the workforce for the new program is typically provided by local churches, community volunteers, partner organizations, and international missionaries.
Equip Leaders, Volunteers & Partners
It takes an army of compassionate individuals who are both equipped and committed to bring hope to every individual, family, and community that has been devastated by addiction. We prepare leaders, staff, volunteers, and partners through staff training, leadership training, translation of materials, new programs development, and consulting on micro-enterprise development.
Launch Outreach Initiatives
A new program typically begins with a community outreach effort. This can include providing meals to the homeless, street outreach in “red light” districts, working with kids in the slums, or leading prison bible studies. These initiatives help us develop relationships with men, women, boys, and girls who need our help.
Address The Problems
Once a relationship is established, we can begin to address the deeper issues related to addiction. Whether operating within a residential recovery setting, day program, support group, orphanage, or a vocational training program – the local Teen Challenge team begins walking alongside each man, woman, boy, or girl as they take steps away from their addiction, towards a new life that is drug-free.
The time needed to plant a new program varies from community to community. It can be as quick as two to three months or can take as long as two to three years. Regulations, financial support, local volunteerism, and community (or governmental) resistance are a few of the issues with which we contend. Our team works with the local leaders to address challenges, mobilize resources, and maintain momentum.
As we launch new programs, our team is already preparing for their long-term sustainability and growth. In the early stage planning process, we begin to consider and plan for the future needs in the community, region or nation, long-term funding requirements, and the financial support needed to sustain the program and fulfill the vision.
Over time, research has shown that as many as 86% of graduates are living a life free from addiction, attending church, and are gainfully employed. Locally, leaders monitor their programs’ success within the community; and globally, we help evaluate the network of programs to ensure continued success.
Establish Best Practices
Since opening our first recovery program in 1958, Teen Challenge has established the best practices in helping individuals overcome life-controlling addictions. These best practices not only address how to most effectively work with recovering addicts, but also the administrative and operational issues required to run an effective addiction prevention, outreach, and recovery program. As new programs, procedures, and outreach are initiated, we continue to evaluate and update our approach.