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583. New Vision Wilderness Therapy

The New Vision Wilderness Therapy program seems to take every teenager in regardless of what the problem is. In a case descriped in the US Observer, a boy ended up in the program because his parents went through a divorce. The judge handling the case punished the boy because his parents could not agree on visitation. The boy did not commit any crime but Judge Judge Gerking decided to confine the boy as result of his parents problems. About 90 days where the boy was denied contact with parents, extended family, school and friends.

To make matter worse the wilderness program did not commit the boy to a local hospital for treatment when the boy experienced health problems. Why the authorities allow treatment in the field conducted by biased doctors or medical staff is very unclear. In 2009 a boy died in the very same area in another wilderness program operating in the exact same way as New Vision Wilderness Therapy. The authorities should have made more clear rules which allow teenagers in such program access to independent treatment in hospitals if they experience health issues while they are out in the wilderness.

Pure luck prevented tragedy in this case. In other news it can be read that the firm seems to be very critical against the trans-gender community.

It cannot be fun to be there as a teenager.

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543. Rite of Passage Wilderness Camp, Nevada

When state officias visited the Rite of Passage Wilderness Camp located near the Walker River Indian reservation near Shurz, Nevada, they found that boys were intentionally denied clothing adequate for the harsh conditions, routinely assaulted by staff, and deprived of meals.

The lack of oversight of the children in the program who has placed in foster care in California resulted in changes in procedures.

However it cannot remove the fact that it could not have been fun to be there as a teenager.

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542. Woodside Trails Therapeutic Camp, Texas

In 2004 the police saved 22 foster kids from a private run wilderness camp in Bastrop County, Texas.

Two employees at the camp were charged with aggravated sexual assault of a child, a first-degree felony. The camp was closed down by the authorities. The juridical process were complicated and the closure of the camp ended up in backers of the program having tried to white wash the ordeals the boys of the camp had to endure. What became of the truth is impossible to say today.

It could not have been a fun place to be as a teenager.

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541. Camp Horizon, Baldwin County, Texas

In 2015 a story was published on various news sites that a 15 year old boy allegedly assaulted a camp counselor and raped her. Now a year later the authorities are investingating the alleged victim about the theory that the so-called rape in reality was about gaining access to disability funds.

At the same time the county who ran the camp decided to outsource the daily operations of the camp to a private company called Pathway, which is now under investigation by human rights group in order to find out whether the teenagers will be safe as many for-profit has profitted from lack of oversight basically warehousing juveniles for the lowest costs possible.

Falsely being accused for rape combined with lack of oversight makes it safe to claim that it wasn’t a fun place to be as a teenager in the past and properly will not be that in the future.

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528. Q-Courage wilderness trip year 2000

In year 2000 the municipality of Odense paid DKK 700,000 for sending a number of at-risk teenager to a wilderness camp in Sweden. The activities resulted in conviction of 4 teenagers after a riot caused by violent behaviors of the counselors. No employee were charged as the police faced difficulties investigating the incident which took place on foreign territory.

The Swedish police didn’t investigate the actions of the employees either making Sweden a fine dumping place for Danish authorities who wants to keep their problems at arms length.

However due to the medias critical coverage of the actions of the employees the municipality of Odense discontinued their relationships with Q-Courage hoping to quiet the scandal and misuse of taxpayers money down.

It could not have been fun to be there as a teenager.

Sources (in Danish)

525. Skyline Journey

Skyline Journey was a wilderness program in Utah, which became known in the media after a 14 year old boy died in the program. While the employees and the program were prosecuted nothing was learned from this tragic death as teenagers continued to die in wilderness programs.

It could not have been fun to be there as a teenager.

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523. Redcliff Ascent Wilderness Program

Redcliff Ascent Wilderness Program was founded in 1993. Over the years a number of teenagers have tried to escape the program some of them by defending themselves against the employees when they ran off. Some of them got better conditions in local detention centers, some of them were returned to the wilderness program.

The teenagers are not allowed tents but sleep in the open regardless of the conditions. It cannot be fun to be there as a teenager.

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522. Red Rock Ranch Academy

Red Rock Ranch Academy was located outside St. George in Utah. They used an outdoor type program to break down teenagers. During one of the hikes a 16 year old girl fell and died as result of the fall.

The program closed not so long after. It was a program focused on punishments like forcing teenagers to sit i a chair all day.

It could not have been fun to be there as a teenager.

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510. Outback Therapeutic Expeditions

Outback Therapeutic Expeditions is a so-called wilderness program operating in Utah. It was founded under anohter name and changed name some years later. The teenagers are forced there. Often they prevent one parent from seeing the children if the other parent has paid for the stay. A father wrote on a meassage board:

My wife had my son kidnapped and sent to Outback Therapeutic Expedition even though I have joint custody. I went to Utah to try to get him back but Outback made it clear that they would require me to file a lawsuit in Utah to get him back. I couldn’t afford to do that. They had cooperated with my wife in hiding him from me in the wilderness and I had no way of finding him.

Outback Therapeutic Expedition knew they were helping to use him as a weapon. There had been no psych eval before he was sent out there, and even when they had one done by their pet Psychologist, the only diagnosis they came up with to keep him was Depression Not Otherwise Specified.

In my opinion, the people at Outback Therapeutic Expedition should be put in Jail.

It cannot be forced to be there and being denied access to a parent.

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489. Northstar Expeditions

Northstar Expeditions is today mostly known to be the place where Aaron Bacon died. Staff members left the program after his death which resulted in a closure of the program and were hired at a lot of other programs – among them Sagewalk, which also closed years later when another boy died there.

Wildernees therapy is dangerous often resulting in injury or death. It cannot have been fun to be there as a teenager.

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