It’s been six decades since Pastor David Wilkerson founded Teen Challenge on the streets of New York to provide youth with an effective and comprehensive Christian faith-based solution to life-controlling drug and alcohol problems in order to become productive members of society.
Today, the religious nonprofit organization offers the largest network of faith-based treatment and recovery centers in the U.S., with more than 200 U.S. locations and more than 1,000 international centers.
Furthermore, it provides a wide range of addiction and recovery services not only for youth, but also for adults and families, including a one-year faith-based residential recovery program; out-patient services; short-term intensive treatment; non-residential community support groups; prison outreach; re-entry training; transitional housing; and substance use prevention programs. (Services vary by state.)
Adult & Teen Challenge USA (TC USA) noted that there are currently more than 21 million alcohol and drug-dependent people in the United States, and overdoses are now the leading cause of death for Americans under the age of 50. Additionally, according to the CDC, 91 Americans die every day from opioid overdoses.
“In light of these realities, the Bible verse from Esther 4:14 has become a statement of purpose for Adult & Teen Challenge,” said Joe Batluck, the organization’s president, in a press release. “We believe our ministry has been not only sustained, but fueled, by God’s grace for 60 years so that we can be available ‘for such a time as this’, to help those in need.”
While TCUSA is commemorating its 60th anniversary throughout 2018, the organization will officially mark the milestone with a celebration in Washington, D.C., on July 22-24 in Alexandria, Virginia. The event will feature Jim Cymbala, pastor of Brooklyn Tabernacle; Don Wilkerson, co-founder of Teen Challenge and president of Brooklyn Teen Challenge; Peter Greer, president of Hope International; and many more dynamic presenters.
“Since Adult & Teen Challenge was founded, the organization has helped tens of thousands of people overcome their struggle with substance use,” said Batluck.
“This year, we reflect both on the lives that have been saved and look ahead to how we can best serve our community through the next 60 years as concerns over substance use continue to escalate within the U.S.,” he added.
By NRB Staff
Published: May 10, 2018