Mid-Atlantic Teen Challenge: Frequently Asked Questions

HOW WILL I COMMUNICATE WITH MY SON WHILE HE IS IN TEEN CHALLENGE?

Students have scheduled weekly phone calls home, as well as video calls. The frequent exchange of letters is also encouraged. Your son will have supplies and time to write home. Each family is assigned a Parent Contact, a staff member who will contact you with bi-weekly updates and answer any questions you may have. Detailed monthly progress reports are sent to each parent/guardian, as well as Zoom video calls with the student and Parent Contact.

HOW WILL I GET MY SON TO TEEN CHALLENGE?

You are ultimately in control of deciding what is best for your son’s care and we can work with you on options for transporting your son here safely. We do require the student to be told they are going to a facility 24 hours in advance. Mid-Atlantic Teen Challenge does not provide professional transport services, but you may contact our preferred provider, Venture Transport Services at 785-840-4136.

Admissions always take place on Wednesdays at 1:00 pm EST. A reliable GPS will bring you directly to our center. Our address is:

9302 Warwick Boulevard
Newport News, Virginia 23601

Here are some tips for getting your son to Teen Challenge:

  • Write a letter-   Several of our parents have told us writing a letter to their son explaining what is happening has worked for them. You could give this letter to your son as you are driving, and ask him to read it completely before responding.
  • Read Over Packing List-   Get ready ahead of time. Leave early in the morning. “Everything is packed and we’re taking a trip” should be enough to get a groggy teenager moving. Most transport companies will require a 4 a.m. or earlier departure from home.
  • Bring friends-   Often families arrive with a youth pastor or neighbor to assist in transporting their son.
CAN MY SON Leave earlier than the 14 months?
While you are ultimately in charge of your son’s care, we ask that families commit to the 14-month time frame before enrolling in the program. We require this commitment in order to avoid manipulations of false progress within our student body and to encourage honest & open growth opportunities. We believe in setting standards of structure and consistency for our students, including the length of the program. Also, our program focuses on different developmental areas as they move through our 5 Phases and we want to ensure that each student leaves with every tool available to them.
WHAT SERVICES ARE OFFERED AT YOUR FACILITY?
We offer recreation therapy, where the boys go to the YMCA, fishing, basketball tournaments, and much more! We have a Discipleship Coordinator the boys will meet with for spiritual matters, checkups, parent meetings, devotionals, and questions. We have an Education Coordinator who helps the boys will all things school related, as well as runs their daily school. We also have an in-house therapist the boys will see, at minimum, once a week. If they wish to speak about things or want to see the therapist, they can schedule a meeting with them to see them more than once a week. We have a Culinary Director who takes some of the boys, who are on higher phases, to do the meals and meal prep. We have a Program Coordinator who runs our PSNL (Personal Studies for New Living) & GSNL (Group Studies for New Living) studies. This is where they learn about integrity, respect, leadership, decision making, etc. We also have other support staff, admins, the Program Director, and the Executive Director of our facility who just love on these guys, have great conversations, pray with them, and just have fun with them! 
(Internship Program)
IF OUR SON IS DISCHARGED OR WE WITHDRAW HIM, CAN I GET MY MONEY BACK?
Admission fees are non-refundable. Refunds will only be made for whole months of pre-paid tuition that the student was not enrolled. Thus, if you pay for July and August, and your son is withdrawn July 6th, you will only receive a refund for August’s tuition.
WILL MY SON HAVE TO PARTICIPATE IN THE RELIGIOUS ASPECTS OF THE PROGRAM TO RECEIVE HELP?
We give full disclosure to every family who enters Mid-Atlantic Teen Challenge that this is a Christian boarding school for boys. Entrance into all Teen Challenge programs are voluntary, and part of that voluntary agreement includes participation in all aspects of the program. Progress through our program does not require that the student have any particular previous religious experience. We do not shove Christianity on people, but our staff as a whole lovingly share experiences, counsel, and teach these boys. We want to be the hands and feet of Jesus through love and love in action.
WHY IS TEEN CHALLENGE EFFECTIVE?
While many think it is the combination of both the length of the program (14 months) and the faith-based environment that helps people to overcome life-controlling problems, we believe it is “the Jesus Factor.” We believe that when people develop a relationship with Jesus, everything changes for them. This means that new priorities, attitudes, reactions, plans, and goals in life all add up to cause real change. We teach boys how to be upstanding men in society by the way they think about situations, the way they lead, and to get them to think about things beyond themselves.
IS TEEN CHALLENGE A MEDICAL PROGRAM?
No. Mid-Atlantic Teen Challenge is a Christian rehabilitation center. It is because of this that most insurances will not cover the cost of Teen Challenge. Various states, school districts, judicial systems, and even some insurance providers may be willing to provide funds to pay for the program, but you will need to contact them directly. VA Medicaid will also sometimes help with funds. If you are involved in a church already, or ask a church to sponsor your child, they will help with tuition sometimes as well.
WHEN WILL I BE ABLE TO VISIT MY SON?
We have 4 Family Weekend Retreats a year. They are usually Thursday to Sunday. We have classes for the parents, games, activities, food, and a good time!
WILL MY SON BE ABLE TO GRADUATE FROM HIGH SCHOOL?
Boys who are Juniors and Seniors in high school may be able to complete enough school work while at Teen Challenge to graduate with a diploma from our academy. This is a regular diploma, not a G.E.D. It is our hope that most boys will be able to get their education on track, take advantage of all our academy has to offer, and earn a diploma.
The academy operates year-round, so there is ample opportunity for a junior or senior to earn his high school diploma.
HOW WILL MY SON CONTINUE HIS EDUCATION?
At Mid-Atlantic Teen Challenge we have our own small, private academy which helps with individualized attention to the students. This provides us with a hybrid approach to learning that combines the robust, high-quality, online lessons with live teachers in our classroom.
HOW LONG IS THE PROGRAM?
MATC is a minimum 14-month residential program. We do not offer a shorter length of stay at this time. Advancement through the program is based on student behavior, phase evaluations, and progress in school.
WHAT AGES DO YOU ACCEPT?
We are an 18 and under facility only. We accept boys from age 12-17. A boy may turn 18 while in the program and continue as long as he has high school coursework to complete. We do not accept students on or after their 18th birthday.