What is turning Leaf?
Turning Leaf is a non-profit, charitable organization designed to provide crisis intervention, treatment and support services to people living with mental illness and intellectual challenge.
The participants of Turning Leaf’s programs are often deeply impacted by their circumstances which become barriers to living safely and independently in the community. These barriers can include homelessness, addictions, discrimination, sexual exploitation, societal stigmas, lack of access to meaningful employment and/or resources, and behaviour that brings them into conflict with the law.
Turning Leaf provides unconditional acceptance and customized, person-centered care and support for the most marginalized and vulnerable population in the communities we serve.
It’s in the name
People are constantly changing, or transitioning, from one part of life to the next. They aspire for better things, attempt to cope with what is unpleasant, and try to heal after experiencing pain and loss. Change is natural but it’s often filled with uncertainty. It can be difficult and is inherently stressful. But change and transitioning from one part of life to the next can also be empowering, positive and hopeful. Turning Leaf is there through it all, and our name is symbolic of this journey.
Turning Leaf provides treatment and crisis intervention services to youth and adults living with intellectual challenge (e.g., Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder) and mental illness (e.g., Schizophrenia, Depression).
The vision of Turning Leaf is to enhance the lives of those living with an intellectual challenge and mental illness through unconditional acceptance and empowering change.
Turning Leaf employs the guiding principles of unconditional acceptance and empowering change in our approach to not only the lives of the individuals we support, but the lives of each and every member of our team. We have created a culture that is conducive to successful personal growth and have created an environment where every team member feels like they are making a difference in each other’s lives.
The support workers of the Turning Leaf community all highly value the importance of secure and trusting relationships. The connections we, within our community, share with participants serve as the foundation for supportive change. We believe that for the support process to be effective, we must work to attain a secure, trusting relationship with the participants.
As the relationship with the participant develops, Turning Leaf support workers engage the participant in a process of change. At a pace that is determined by the participant, support workers use a person-centered approach to help the participant identify parts of their life they would like to be different. Through goal-setting and plan development, the participant and support workers work together to meet with success.
The Turning Leaf support worker believes that change is possible. Even the smallest change is regarded as forward movement towards larger goals. Support workers identify success, reframe challenges, and provide emotional support when obstacles are encountered. Our main job however, is to share with the participants, a sense of hope and possibility.
Turning Leaf meets hurting people where they are – fallen through the cracks in the system – and we design help just for them. We surround them with a community so that we can help empower a process of change, from being hurt to not being hurt, from being hopeless to being hopeful, to being hungry, to being fed, clothed, healed and counseled. At Turning Leaf, we provide unconditional acceptance and empowering change.
Governed by a Board of Directors, Turning Leaf provides community and residential support services in Manitoba and Saskatchewan, including the communities of Winnipeg, Selkirk, Portage La Prairie, Morden/Winkler, Regina, and Moose Jaw.
The participants of our programs are often deeply impacted by their circumstances which can become barriers to living safely and independently in the community. Trauma, homelessness, poverty, addictions, discrimination, sexual exploitation, societal stigmas, and lack of access to resources are some of the barriers our participants face every day.
Turning Leaf’s support is customized to every individual’s needs and risk level. We offer crisis-intervention and treatment services, Community Support, Day Program Services, Residential Support (including emergency housing, 24-hour shift-staffed homes, Cluster Housing, and Home Share), a Harm Reduction Program, Clinical Services, Indigenous Services and more.
Turning Leaf believes that everyone has the right and responsibility to make choices. We believe everyone is doing their best to move forward in life in a positive way. A poor decision with a negative outcome does not change this; we regard these decisions as honest efforts to meet needs. Turning Leaf believes that everyone has the right to feel safe and supported and to be treated with dignity and respect. A person-centered approach to support means that we empower participants to take the lead in their own life, in every way, and without judgement.
Our highly skilled and compassionate Intake team is here to help you navigate how to get the help that you or your loved one needs. The team will guide you through the process, and when funding is not possible, our devoted team will go above and beyond to connect you with helpful resources.
BARKLEY ENGELFounder & CEO
JENNIFER BIGGSDirector of Supported
Independent Living &
RENEE VOSSDirector of Residential Services
LUKE KEILBACKDirector of Integrated
SWANI LANDRYDirector of Marketing
SARA TellDirector of Human Resources
MAURA LEAHYChief Financial Officer
KENT SMITHChief Information Officer
Founder and CEO
We meet hurting people where they are – often after falling through gaps in the system – and we wrap them in unconditional support designed just for them.
Board of Directors
RAJ PERUMALBoard President & Chair
CEO, The WolfStrata Group
FEMI OGUNRINDEBoard Vice President
President & CEO, Saskatchewan Ltd.
CASSIE ALLENBoard Treasurer
Senior Audit Manager, KPMG
TODD NADEAUBoard Treasurer
Director, People First HR Services
JOE MACEKBoard Director
Investment Advisor, Portfolio Manager
IA Private Wealth
TODD BOLDTBoard Director
Manager, Human Resource Business Services, SaskPower
GAIL SARKANYBoard Director
KRISTIN GIBSONBoard Director
Partner, MLT Aikins