President Nancy began the meeting with the pledge, song and 4-way test followed by a respectful remembrance of Chief Maloney of Greenland, and those officers wounded, one-year ago tomorrow while performing their duties.  The invocation included a moment of silence for those who lost their lives that day.


Bill Warren was then introduced as the sole guest of the day.  It was later noted that Bill is on 7-day notice.   Congratulations Bill.


General announcements were at a minimum today.  It was noted that Al Bergeron has been ill and is currently at Oceanside in Hampton NH for anyone who wishes to reach out to him in support at this time.   Following that, all were reminded that the Golf Tournament is coming up on June 21st at 9:00.  The Tournament will be at Breakfast Hill and Rotarians not sponsoring the event are encouraged to enter a foursome and take home the impressive trophy.  Two teams each from the Dover Club and the Souhegan Club are expected, and with only one team from our club anticipated so far – all are encouraged to join the fun.   Forms for playing and sponsorship are available at meetings and online.


Happy dollars followed with Tom Decker recognizing his son for scoring 8 goals in a hockey game that he recently attended in Denver.   Sandy Tucker rejoiced in the fact that there would be no shoveling as a result of today’s precipitation.




Ed Mallon then introduced our speaker, Dr. Michael Gass, a person with impressive and extensive credentials in youth therapy.   Dr. Gass is one of the founders of the UNH Browne Center.  With the Center he has developed a program of adventure therapy as a way of treating behavior in at-risk and vulnerable youth.

Dr. Gass’ video presentation, entitled “When thing go ‘bad’ with adolescents:  What do we do” highlighted information on the past failures of providing therapy to young people, as well as the success currently being realized from youth adventure therapy. 


The youth therapy approach joins mental health care professionals with young people in a wilderness environment to allow the youth to explore themselves and gain treatment in a manner that has not been available until relatively recently.   These groups are typically engaged in an experience for 30, 60 or 90 days, with a ratio of about 1:3, therapists to participants.


As an example Dr. Gass stated that the experience may start with in a “base-camp” type setting to allow for detox and adjustment into to the program, as well as to train participants on the basic skills that they will need (starting a fire, food preparation, etc…).  From there the experience will expand into a variety of outdoor challenges which inspires different participants to become leaders at different times during the experience.


This information was provided against the backdrop of statistics from 2008, a year in which one of every 100 Americans was imprisoned, and the prison population was at 2.4 million with a cost of $49 billion (6x more than was spent on higher education in that year).    Further, the Gun buy-back,  boot-camp, DARE and scared-straight style programs were being seen as ineffective, supporting a statistic that for every $1 spent on any of those programs, $203 would need to be spent to counteract the failing results of the program.


To date the statistics on the positive results of adventure therapy are significant.   Re-arrest rates show fewer re-arrests following participation in the program.   Program safety figures are also positive – one report stating that it is 140 times more dangerous to participate in a high school football game than to participate in an adventure therapy class.  




The meeting closed with John Pappas winning the $77.00 raffle, but failing to secure the match jackpot.  


After arriving to Rotary with an overcast 48 cool degree day on tap, a partly sunny 61 degrees awaited departing Rotarians – Spring in New England.