Check out this impactful #MySquadsStory from the Turning Winds Academy!
“What do you do when you’re struggling in life? You ask for help; you accept the help; you heal. But what then? Have you ever heard the expression “in order to keep it you have to give it away?” Or perhaps you’ve heard “if you want to help yourself, go help others.” On the surface these statements make no sense, in fact they are a complete contradiction. Yet if you look below the surface, you will find there is great truth in these statements and more importantly the attitude and action they call for. In order to fully understand what we mean, we should first explain who we are and why teaming up with Squads Abroad is helping to impact lives in more ways than one.
We are Turning Winds; we are a residential therapeutic program and boarding school for teens 13-18 struggling with behavioral, mental health, and substance abuse issues. We are located on a beautiful 150 acres of nature in the Rocky Mountains of Montana. We are a team and a family with a mission: to rescue teens from crisis, renew their belief in their own potential, and reunite them with their family and a path of success. We have helped thousands of struggling teens and their families heal.
“Coming together for a common cause and bonding with people from all over the world was super cool. I made friends with little kids. I got to paint school classrooms. It was life changing!” Fiona, Turning Winds Student.
Twice a year, for the past number of years, we here at Turning Winds have teamed up with Squads Abroad to embark on life-changing international trips that our kids would describe as providing some of the most impactful and rewarding experiences of not only their time with us but their lives. It is the act of giving back and being of service, of helping others, that has helped so many of our teens discover a true sense of purpose and joy. Most recently, in April 2019, Turning Winds joined Squads Abroad in Chalkida, Greece at the Ritsona Refugee Camp where twelve of our students and four of our staff members underwent a life-changing experience. Partnered with Squads Abroad, our kids helped paint murals for a local pre-school at the camp, build furniture for female friendly spaces, and most importantly bonded with the community; they gave back!
“It was awesome to be able to help and be of service to others. It gave me a much a greater appreciation for what I have.” Brigham, Turning Winds Student.
To the parents and families of these incredible teens, who only a few months prior were in crisis and feared for their child’s well being and life, the thought of their loved one being healthy enough to travel outside of the country much less willing to positively impact the life of some one else – yet here they are, here we are, the Turning Winds family, giving back! Once Turning Wind students, through hard work and perseverance, reach a certain phase in their program, they are afforded the opportunity to join us on one of these incredible volunteer opportunities where they will learn how their actions and efforts can actually have the power to help impact lives. It is a full circle healing experience.
“We have continuously witnessed our students’ lives change as a result of working with Squads Abroad. We have seen teens who struggle to look outside themselves and think of others, cry with tears of gratitude, appreciation, and love for their fellow human being and it’s nothing short of amazing.” Carl Baisden, Turning Winds Chief Operations Officer.
With the help of Squads Abroad, Turning Winds has traveled to Greece, Peru, Thailand, Hawaii, Costa Rica and many other countries abroad. Each international volunteer opportunity provides its participants with an experience that is beyond life changing in so many ways. Our students not only experience the joy and healing of helping others, but they also learn about different cultures, increase their understanding of the refugee crisis, and create everlasting gratitude for their ability to be part of something greater than themselves.
“What truly brings joy to our hearts as a team and a family is that miracles happen all around us. When we all come together to help one another remarkable things happen – It’s healing, educational, powerful, and like nothing else you have ever experienced,” stated Owen Baisden, CEO, Turning Winds.
Working with Squads Abroad has been an amazing adventure and experience for our students and we are grateful to be able to provide them with the opportunity to be a part of this outstanding organization. We look forward to future international volunteer opportunities and being of service for years to come.”
Interested in making the same impact as the Turning Winds Academy did? Go to our Greece homepage and sign up today!