Turning Winds Program Celebrates 20 Years

Innovative Treatment Guides Teens to Healthy Lives

Turning Winds recognizes two decades in helping teens change course during a pivotal time in their lives. A Montana-based full continuum of care treatment program combined with an advanced academic curriculum, Turning Winds was founded in October, 2002.

The program was developed by a father, John Baisden, and his son John Baisden, Jr., after a loss in their own household, to channel their energies and make a positive difference in this world. The program has helped thousands of teens work through a wide range of behavioral, educational, and mental health challenges.

“We find ourselves continually innovating over the years and I don’t see that stopping,” explained co-founder John Baisden, Jr. “The results are incredible when you are unconstrained from the typical bureaucracy of more institutional centers.”

2022 has been a year of accomplishment for the program. Turning Winds achieved The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval®, after earning several 3-year CARF accreditations in years prior. In addition, this year TRICARE West authorized Turning Winds as a Residential Treatment Center for members needing mental health care for their children under 18.  A TRICARE RTC must undergo a rigorous application process to provide mental health treatment to families of uniformed service members.

The Turning Winds residential treatment program is modeled after a healthy family environment with strong role models and structure paired with an academic focus and clinical individual, and group sessions. The full-day approach with a higher length of stay helps to invest the time needed for meaningful change. Often, teens return home ahead of their peers in development because of that self-growth.

“It was stressful to come to the decision to have him placed at Turning Winds,” shared the parents of one teen. “It was probably the best thing we’ve ever done, not just for Jacob, but for our entire family.”

An innovation of Turning Winds is its sponsorship of international service trips to change the perspectives of emerging adults. They learn about poorer cultures while giving back through service work.

“The international service trips are life-changing experiences where teenagers get a sneak peek of what it is like to live in such humble circumstances yet be surrounded by so much happiness,” said Owen Baisden, CEO of Turning Winds.

The goal is to show students firsthand how much they have materially, and to see how other teenagers can be happy without relying on excess possessions. The lesson in gratitude can be lasting as a student comes full circle from a person in need to a contributor to others.

Turning Winds sees a future of helping teens in Montana and surrounding states. “Ultimately, when you have been serving young people for so long, you get to see generational change,” Baisden, Jr. said. Individuals who were on that same campus during its first days now have young teens of their own. They currently can apply those life skills to themselves and their children.

About Turning Winds

Founded in 2002, Turning Winds is a residential treatment program recognized as a leader in providing exceptional teen mental health treatment along with a supportive academic experience.

Its vision is to restore hope in the teens they work with. Situated on 150 acres in Montana’s deep and pristine northern woodlands, Turning Winds offers young people the time, care, and environment with which to develop the self-agency essential to leading a free, healthy, and meaningful life.  For more information, visit www.turningwinds.com.


Submitted by Alecia Oor

Yaak Elementary School K8 Wings Walk Journey

Courtesy of

Yaak Elementary School – K-8


Our journey…the boys, Angelo and I had a fabulous time raising money for Wings Walk. Thank you Diane and Kathy Huber for your support too! We started off Thursday night with a spaghetti feast and brownies the boy’s made. The next day we started with academics first! Spelling test. Then, we headed out and the kids really enjoyed the scavenger hunt during our 8 mile walk. Thank you to the parents and all the people that sponsored them. We are still collecting our donations and will post our grand total by next week.—Ms. Sabre’

Photo Courtesy of  Yaak Elementary School – K-8