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Crazy Good Turns

We tell inspiring stories about people who do amazing things for others.
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Crazy Good Turns
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Sep 10, 2018

Exciting changes ahead! Our founder takes over the show and talks about what you can expect from now on. 

Aug 27, 2018

What do a Silicon Valley tech entrepreneur and a Middle Tennessee farmer have in common? Creative new approaches for helping prisoners change their lives.  

Aug 14, 2018

It's like an anti-collection agency. RIP Medical Debt is buying millions in unpaid medical bills in order to forgive the debts. Meet founders Craig Antico and Jerry Ashton, and hear their plan to bury billions in their "debt cemetery."

Jul 31, 2018

How do you overcome tragedy? At Camp HOPE, a retreat for children and adults grieving the death of a loved one, the answer is: By lifting each other up.

Jul 17, 2018

The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s OrchKids program opens minds and doors to new opportunities for students at inner city schools.

Jul 3, 2018

EOD Warrior Foundation helps the men and women who save lives by performing the military’s scariest job.

Jun 19, 2018

A school in the Deep South is changing hearts and developing minds with a “tough love approach” that works. Meet founder Luma Mufleh and her students.

Jun 5, 2018

Team Music is Love turns fans into volunteers and concerts into opportunities to make a difference. See how country singer Martina McBride takes her foundation on tour with her.

May 21, 2018

Kennedy first heard of sex trafficking when she was in middle school. “It was the worst fate I could think of.” So today she's fighting back as CEO of Marinus Analytics, a tech company that’s helping cops send traffickers to jail.

May 15, 2018

Ken Langone came from nothing to become a founder of The Home Depot, but never forgot his roots. He’s given staggering sums, but says his money isn’t truly charity. Discover a refreshing outlook that proves you don’t need riches in order to give richly.

May 8, 2018

U.S. Army Captain Matt Zeller says he wouldn’t be here today if it weren’t for Janis Shinwari, an Afghan Translator who saved his life during an ambush. Years later, Zeller had the chance to return the favor to Janis -- and many others. But thousands more still need help.

Apr 24, 2018

Liz Shropshire is the daughter of a Vietnam war vet who couldn’t shake the memories of her childhood. She became a music teacher, but then heard a new calling: Help refugee children. She gave up everything, brought hope to a camp halfway around the world--and then a new mission emerged.

Apr 7, 2018

Millions of people have seen the incredible 3D printer capable of building a 700-square foot house in 24 hours. Not as many know the equally incredible story of Brett Hagler and New Story, the people behind that machine -- and how they plan on using it to build communities worldwide.

Mar 27, 2018

A real estate investment takes a strange and delightful twist when Kenny Hill hears a calling: “What if, what you did for these homes, you could do for people’s lives? Totally renovate.”

Mar 13, 2018

Travis Roy was a hockey standout with a promising career ahead of him. But then everything changed in an instant. A tragic accident left the talented young hockey player paralyzed from the neck down. But Roy refused to let his story end there. In fact, his injury was just the beginning of something incredible.

 

Feb 27, 2018

There is nothing uplifting about cancer, but there is something incredible in the way some people respond to it.

In this episode, you’ll meet Jeanine Patten-Coble, a 39-year-old wife and mother who goes to bed normally one night but discovers cancer when she wakes up the next morning. 

Like all cancer patients, Jeanine faces a tough road ahead. But she makes an incredible discovery -- that helps her not only survive but build something incredible: Little Pink Houses of Hope.

Feb 13, 2018

Not every podcast episode will make you look at the world differently. This one might.

Why? Because in this show you’ll learn about a concept that’s changing the way people view the autism spectrum. The idea is called “neurodiversity.”

While neurodiversity may sound complex, the idea behind it is as simple as it is true: people are wired differently. People on the spectrum are neurodiverse, while those who are not on the spectrum are known as neurotypical.

In this episode, you’ll learn more about how it works, and meet a company that’s using the idea to create jobs.

Jan 30, 2018

Why do sports matter to children who may be fighting for their life? Because people often forget that kids battling serious disease are still kids. They have interests, dreams, and passions -- including sports. That's the idea behind Special Spectators -- a non-profit that creates VIP, all-access gameday experiences for seriously ill children and their families. In this episode, you’ll discover what one of those unforgettable days is like.

Jan 16, 2018

Welcome to Season 3 of Crazy Good Turns! We’re excited to have you back -- and especially pumped about this episode. Two main reasons why:

  1. We announce the winner of our $50,000 grant from Season 2. Don’t worry, we won’t keep you in suspense for long. In fact, click “play” and you’ll hear which of last season’s guests won the award right away.
  2. Right after the announcement, you’ll meet a young person who’s done some pretty incredible stuff for others, incredibly early in her life. It’s part of our discussion about “#CrazyGoodKids, today’s young people and how they’re giving back.

Know a Kid Who’s Doing Something Great for Somebody Else? If so, we’d love to hear about them. We’re celebrating #CrazyGoodKids, and think that every good turn deserves a shout-out. There’s no deed too great or too small. It could be as simple as setting up a lemonade stand and donating the proceeds to charity. Here’s how you can celebrate kids who are giving back:

We’ll be featuring some of the stories we receive in upcoming episodes and in our newsletters. Don’t let your kid’s good work go unnoticed!

Dec 19, 2017

In this show, you’ll hear five stories of incredible gifts or acts of kindness. 

Kindness and generosity come in many forms. This episode proves it.

Tune in and you will hear about:

  • A child who’s rescued from a life-threatening ordeal through the generosity of a total stranger 
  • A retiree who set out to volunteer a few hours at his local hospital and discovered an entirely new purpose in life -- one that’s reached a billion of people
  • How a woman looking to help the refugees she’d seen on TV wound up forming a deep friendship with a refugee family in her own city 
  • A “miracle cat” goes missing for more than a month, but makes it home with the help of an unexpected friend 
  • How one man finds “endless opportunities to be generous”
Dec 5, 2017

Fame. Fortune. And the adoration of millions. Those are the things Danny Wuerffel left behind when he walked away from sports and into a life of serving others.

Today you’ll find the former Heisman Trophy winner and NFL quarterback at Desire Street Ministries, where he’s helping inner city communities across the southern U.S. break the cycle of poverty, drugs and violence

In this episode, you’ll hear about Wuerffel growing up as the son of a military chaplain, and how that shaped his worldview—and led him to end up in lots of surprising locations.

He’ll take you behind the scenes of his Heisman Trophy award-winning night, and tell you what really happened after he received his award. And you’ll hear how volunteer work at his first NFL stop—New Orleans—led him to both the job he’s doing today, and the love of his life.

Tune in and you’ll also hear about the night Hurricane Katrina destroyed Wuerffel’s family home and the life-changing insight he discovered amongst the wreckage. You’ll also learn about Danny’s brush with a potentially deadly disease.

But don’t worry, it’s not all about scary storms and overcoming awful sickness. The energetic Wuerffel delivers plenty of smiles when he takes you back to his days at University of Florida, complete with some one-of-a-kind anecdotes about his one-of-a-kind coach, Steve Spurrier.

Nov 21, 2017

How far would you go to help one of your coworkers?

For Bernie Marcus, the co-founder and former CEO of Home Depot, the answer is: farther than most would ever imagine.

In the 1980s, Marcus had a personal accountant whose 4-year-old son had autism. What started as a simple desire to help her developed into a 30-year campaign to improve the resources available to kids with autism and their families. Today the Marcus Autism Center is one of the world’s leading institutions for autism research and treatment..

In this episode, you’ll hear about the incredible personal philosophy that drove Marcus to build the Marcus Autism Center and go so far as to commit more than $100 million of his own money to the cause. All told, Bernie and his wife Billi, through the Marcus Foundation, have donated more than $1 billion to address some of the nation’s most pressing health issues, including stem cell research, spinal cord issues and brain injuries.

But while he’s a man who’s donated richly, Marcus didn’t come from a background of wealth. In this show he also shares how he grew up poor in Newark, New Jersey and worked until his 50s before he reached his big breakthrough. He also offers insight into his personal ethical code—the one that made sure that, when he did find success, he was going to share it with others, especially the people who’d helped him succeed.

Nov 7, 2017

Some people are strong. Some are tough. Some seem unstoppable. And then there’s Travis Mills of the Travis Mills Foundation, who will redefine all of those words for you.

He’ll tell you that he’s like anyone else. He just had a bad day at work.

But Mills’s job at the time was Staff Sergeant for the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne Division. And that bad day—April 10, 2012—took away both his arms and his legs.

Today Mills is a quadruple amputee—one of five U.S. servicemen to lose all of his limbs to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. But ask and he’ll tell you that he doesn’t consider himself a wounded warrior. Why?

“I’m not wounded,” Mills says.

Instead, Mills considers himself a “recalibrated warrior” — one who’s defied all odds and surpassed every expectation on his road to recovery. He taught himself how to walk, then run, then do an incredible number of other things you might not expect: swim, fish, and do CrossFit. He completed his rehabilitation at Walter Reed Medical Center in about half the time doctors thought it would take. Along the way, he made lifting the spirits of other injured veterans  his new mission.

“I met everybody there. I was one of the first people they got to talk to when they got to the hospital,” Mills says.  “I think that was impactful because, at Walter Reed, the worst amputation you're going to see is me.

"So here’s a guy with no arms and legs who either rolls or walks into your room and is like, ‘Hey, man. What's up? How's life treating you? You're in a great spot, you're going to get better, and I can't wait to see you down there. We'll work out together one day.’ It really is uplifting.Aa lot of the guys were really thankful for that.”

Today Mills is a speaker, an author, an actor, and the head of a foundation that’s helping other critically injured vets recalibrate their own lives, the Travis Mills Foundation. This year the foundation opened a beautiful wooded retreat in Central Maine where soldiers who’ve lost limbs can spend a week with their families free of charge.

“And I can tell you right now, I'm the president [of the foundation] and I have six other wonderful board members -- we're never going to pay ourselves,” Mills says. “We don't take a dime for this, and all the money raised goes towards the project, it goes towards the Travis Mills Foundation, and the retreat, and bringing the families up so the families don't have any cost when they get up here.”

The retreat is already earning incredible praise from the servicemen and women that it’s served. And it’s going the extra mile to help even more. Initially scheduled to stay open only through the end of October, the retreat extended its inaugural season in order to help military families displaced by the Hurricanes in Texas and Florida.

In this episode, you’ll find out how Travis survived his terrible injuries, who inspired him to take on an excruciating recovery, and how he learned to walk again with some help from his young daughter, Chloe. You’ll also learn how a past guest on Crazy Good Turns, The Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation, helped Travis, his wife, Kelsey, and Chloe, get back to a more normal life. And you’ll hear one inspiring, incredible quote after another from a man who is truly unstoppable.

 

 

Oct 22, 2017

On paper it doesn’t make any sense. One out of every six people in the United States lack access to sufficient food, yet 40 percent of the food produced in this country goes to waste.

These statistics may be staggering, but they aren’t unique to the U.S. According to the new documentary WASTED: The Story of Food Waste, more than 1.3 billion pounds of food gets thrown away across the globe each year, while 800 million people worldwide go hungry.

But Rick Nahmias wasn’t thinking about these stunning figures while walking through his neighborhood in Valley Glen, California in January 2009. He was a photographer who’d worked extensively with the state’s migrant workers, but on that day he was just trying to get some exercise for his dog, Scout. Glancing at the citrus trees in the yards around him, he realized that most of the fruit — food that could feed otherwise hungry people — would fall to the ground and go to waste unless someone did something. So he did.

With the help of just one other person, Nahmias set to work picking tangerines from a single backyard. By the end of the day, they’d harvested more than 100 pounds of fruit. And Nahmias knew he’d stumbled onto an idea with enormous potential.

Nahmias used that idea to launch Food Forward. During the past 8 years, Food Forward has rescued more than 42 million pounds (over 140 million servings) of produce. The organization has moved beyond just harvesting backyard fruit trees and today works with public orchards and farmers markets to take food that would otherwise be wasted and use it to help hunger relief agencies across eight Southern California counties.

Each month, food recovered by Food Forward feeds more than 100,000 people. And Nahmias says it’s just the beginning. Tune in and learn more about his two-birds-one-stone solution for fighting hunger and food waste.

 

Oct 9, 2017

The numbers are staggering. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma inflicted between 150 and 200 million dollars in damage to Texas and Florida alone. That’s to say nothing of the human cost — thousands of lives disrupted, people displaced and homes destroyed.

The situation is even worse in U.S. territories in the Caribbean. Hurricane Maria essentially destroyed all of Puerto Rico’s infrastructure. Recovery from all three hurricanes will take years — which is exactly why the Disaster Services Corporation of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul USA is there to help.

While the Society of St. Vincent De Paul is a Catholic Charity focused on the needy and suffering that has been around for more than 150 years, the group’s Disaster Services Corporation was born just 12 years ago out of the crisis created by Hurricane Katrina. In this episode, you’ll hear how an unexpected announcement during that disaster caused the organization to take unprecedented steps to help evacuees in an entirely new way. You’ll also learn how a program created back then will bring comfort to the tens of thousands of people impacted by this year’s torrent of hurricanes.

Along the way, you’ll meet the leader of SVDP Disaster Services, Elizabeth Disco-Shearer. She was a successful businesswoman, but changed everything in her life after she made a deal with God — and God held up his end of the bargain.

Find out what her promise was, how it ultimately led her to lead an organization that’s helped thousands of traumatized people put their lives back together. Tune in now.

 

 

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