Our History


Teen Challenge was established by David Wilkerson in 1958 in New York City. Many people have read about David Wilkerson’s pioneering work amongst infamous inner-city gangs in the best-selling book, The Cross and the Switchblade.


Since then, Teen Challenge, now called Adult & Teen Challenge in many parts of the world, and has grown to over 1,400 centres in more than 135 countries.


Adult & Teen Challenge Western Australia Inc began as Teen Challenge in 1985 under the leadership of Pastor Malcolm Smith. Malcolm faithfully served as Executive Director for over 36 years, retiring in 2021.


Malcolm captivated the hearts and minds of thousands of generous donors, who contributed towards the establishment of the residential rehabilitation centre, Grace Academy, set on 250 acres in Esperance and our head office building in Warwick, in Perth’s northern suburbs.


Malcolm, and the pioneering work of David Wilkerson all those decades ago in New York City, have left an indelible mark on the Western Australian community. Over the decades thousands of people have been set free from crippling bondage of addiction. The positive impact of those set free from addiction is multiplied through thousands of family, friends and workplaces.


Today Adult & Teen Challenge is led by Executive Director, Pastor Steve Hall. Steve is moved by the same vision that motivated David Wilkerson in the late 1950s and Malcolm Smith in the mid 1980s. Steve wants to see people set free from addiction to go on to live a life of significance.

Adult & Teen Challenge Western Australia Inc is a not for profit organisation providing rehabilitation services, support and education to meet the needs of young people and families experiencing drug and alcohol related problems. We acknowlege the traditional owners and custodians of the lands on which we operate.

Adult & Teen Challenge

Western Australia Inc


P (08) 9246 5777


81 Ellersdale Avenue

Warwick WA 6024


Postal PO Box 277

Greenwood WA 6924