I heard about Transitions Global from a friend who recently took a position with the organization as the Country Director. I am so impressed with all I have been hearing- it sounds as if Transitions Global is truly touching and changing the lives of so many wonderful women. It is an inspiration just to know someone who is so closely connected to the work they are doing.
Since my mom's cousin, Athena, and her husband, James, founded Transitions in 2007, I've had it in the back of my mind that I wanted to help out in some way. When I decided to take a gap year between high school and college to travel, I knew Transitions would be a perfect place to spend some time. This past fall, my best friend and I travelled to Cambodia to volunteer for TG for three months, and it was an AMAZING experience. I fell in love with Southeast Asia, Phnom Penh, the organization, and all the people I met. I had so much fun teaching knitting, baking, and tutoring English in my time there. I think about and miss the girls, the other volunteers, and people I met working for TG every day. I hope that the girls learned just as much from me as I learned from them! Someday I hope I will be able to return to Phnom Penh and work with Transitions again!
I have been doing work with non-profits for the past 20 years now - from stuffing bags at a food bank to serving as the board chair during a huge capital campaign. In 2009, I started down the path of stopping sexual exploitation. I met with many non-profits and NGOs and have to say that Transitions Global was one of the best run organizations I have experienced. I spent time with the founders, toured one of their locations, met with staff and clients, and was very impressed. They have created a very effective organization that I plan to use as a model for our newly formed Foundation. I am looking forward to identifying more opportunities to partner with them once we are established in Cambodia.
Thank you to the founders, the board, and their team of amazing talent - your program works and is an inspiration to us all.
I was fortunate enough to travel to Cambodia in January/February of 2013, to visit Transitions Global and the girls they serve. As a mental health therapist in the US, I have worked with various organizations/foster care facilities/ transitional schools- and was beyond impressed with all of the work Transitions does and in the way the organization itself is run. In my opinion, the work they do in rehabilitating the girls in terms of therapy, education, socialization, recognizing their dreams and setting goals, and in simply teaching them how to just be teen girls again meets if not exceeds the quality of organizations in the US. The love and dedication poured into this organization is obvious when visiting, and I am so thankful to have learned and experienced so much of what they do while there.
I found out about Transitions Global last summer and almost immediately signed up to participate in the Every Girl Project.
I was lucky enough to travel to Cambodia on Transition Global's Engagement Trip this past January and was able to see the work they are doing first-hand, meet their clients, and discuss the issue of sex and human trafficking with their partners. They are an extremely effective organization and are doing amazing work!
I was lucky enough to be able to volunteer with Transitions for 3 months in 2013. It was such a life changing experience to work with a team of people who are so passionate about the cause and changing girls lives. Everyone who works at Transitions are dedicated, hard working and inspiring.
The level of care exceeds anything I could have ever imagined and the love that each of the girls receive is incredible. They are so much more than rehabilitation they are about allowing these girls to dream again and believe in themselves. It was something that I got to witness first hand and it is truly amazing.
I could not speak more highly of Transitions and believe they are an astounding non-profit.
I have worked with Transitions in Cambodia for the past 3 years. The level of professionalism and excellence with which they serve their clients is inspiring and setting the bar for anti-trafficking work around the world. I cannot say strongly enough how highly I recommend this organization.
I have had the honor of serving Transitions and our clients at the board level for the last 3 and half years. Transitions is at the leading edge of not only quality after care services, but defining metrics for success. Lives are changed on the daily basis as a result of the passion of the Transitons staff and founders. It is the passion and systemic approach to the issues that our organization takes, that allow is to have such a massive positive impact on survivors and their communities.
In the summer of 2008 I began to research the issue of sex trafficking. That led me to many, well-known organizations doing high-profile work in the field. When I first visited Cambodia in December of 2008, though, I was surprised to learn first-hand that many of these organizations did not deserve the recognition, media attention, celebrity endorsements and funding that they manage to attract. Transitions' progressive philosophy and its holistic, highly individualized aftercare program set it apart from these other organizations. Our survivors are encouraged to dream of a career beyond sewing and crafts, to continue their education, to learn computer skills, and to, ultimately, become happy, empowered, self-sufficient members of society. Everything at Transitions is built around restoring each girl's dignity and dreams. I have traveled to Cambodia four times since that first trip in 2008 to visit Transitions and our girls. I also visit other NGOs while I'm there. I am more confident each visit that I made the right choice in choosing to support Transitions above all others. My first experience with Transitions and our amazing girls, and every experience since, has been an inspiring, life-changing event.
The summer between my second and third year of law school, I went to Cambodia to do volunteer legal work for the organization. My life has forever been changed. Transitions Global provides aftercare services to rescued female sex trafficking survivors. Unfortunately, many organizations that claim to make a difference in this field do not actually do any good. Human trafficking is such a hot topic right now, and many organizations just want to be involved while it is trendy. Transitions Global is not one of those organizations. The people that work for Transitions Global treat these girls the way they would their own daughters. The girls are loved, provided for, and protected. The joy on each girls' face is the true testament of the impact Transitions Global has. I would have never thought that a girl so sexually used and destroyed could have such joy and peace--but that is what Transitions Global does. The organization restores what was once broken. I will never forget watching the youngest girl play a game on my laptop. She laughed so long and so loud while playing--I cried watching her. The girls actually can laugh again...they can have a life...have joy...have love...have peace. The work Transitions Global does is truly incredible. I will never forget that summer. My life was changed.
I first met James and Athena in early-2009 when they were consulting on an aftercare project in India with our church. I was immediately touched by their story of moving their family to Cambodia to help girls rescued from sex trafficking after seeing a Dateline NBC special. I was so impressed by their knowledge of the issues related to trafficking and aftercare, how much they care for each of the girls, and their success, that I began contributing monthly. They ensure that each girl receives the care she needs AND has the ability to dream again. It's been touching to hear success stories from the girls through the years. I've had the opportunity to begin volunteering for them a few months ago, which has made me feel even more positive about the organization, and will be traveling to Cambodia in late-January. I can't say enough about James and Athena, what they do, and HOW they do it. Transitions Global is definitely a GREAT non-profit!
Transitions Global is a wonderful organization focusing on the whole health of the girls they serve. James & Athena have developed an organization that focuses on the girls and their individual needs, seeking to bring healing and wholeness to their lives thru education, health care and most importantly providing hope for a bright future. TG is truly an amazing, live giving organization and I am proud to know James and Athena and their team.
I had the pleasure of meeting James and Athena Pond in 2009. In early 2012, I went to Cambodia to observe the work of Transitions first hand. It was one of the best trips I’ve ever taken. I thought I knew a lot about Transitions and was so impressed with their programs before. I didn’t think I would leave even more impressed and inspired. To see them in action, meet the girls they are serving, talk to the very impressive and dedicated staff and meet with other NGOs who collaborate with Transitions was just amazing. Going on this trip, you might be worried that it will be difficult and emotionally taxing. But it isn’t hard and the emotions are all of hope and joy. I think we all left with such a positive feeling, knowing that these young women had a bright future ahead of them thanks to Transitions. The difference in Transitions’ program is attention to mental and physical health, life skills, and encouraging the girls to dream big about their future. No career is off limits and the staff will go to great lengths to find the education or training needed. To think about what these girls have been through, and then know that they emerge from Transitions’ programs empowered and confident is so thrilling.
Transitions learned early on that providing a safe and loving environment for these girls is a good start, but it is far from enough. Thanks to their approach, graduates of Transitions' programs are now working as restaurant chefs, yoga instructors, bakery managers and social workers.
The privacy and needs of each girl are respected and no one is ever expected to speak publicly about their past unless they volunteer to do so. I can’t say enough about how great this organization is and I am running out of complimentary adjectives to describe them!
After living in southern Africa and witnessing the atrocities of sex trafficking occurring around me, I returned to the U.S., making a new home in Cincinnati, Ohio. There I met Transitions Global. A nonprofit organization that was combating what I had witnessed in Africa – sex trafficking of young girls. Traveling with a team in January of 2012, I had the opportunity to engage in Transitions’ work in Cambodia.
During a True Body Project activity, a program developed to empower the girls, I sat next to Molika as she drew a beautiful picture of a tree. A tree with stretching roots and many branches indicating how she felt – feeling strong but with room to grow. Another girl drew 2 trees – one big, one small – and expressed how before she came to Transitions she felt like the small tree – minimally noticed as if forgotten – but now she was the big tree – strong and loved.
Without a doubt, the trip to Cambodia reminded me of the disturbing and ongoing struggle with modern day slavery. Yet seeing the nature of Transition’s work gives me hope. But the girls I met on the trip have given me the most hope. They have in many ways seen the darkest side of human nature, yet they have not given up; they continue to push on and persevere. They are truly survivors – and it is through Transitions that have found their hope, their voice, and that reason to keep moving forward.
In speaking with passionate people who want to invest (either time or money) into a nonprofit organization, I always recommend Transitions. They are game-changers not only in the world of sex trafficking, but also in nonprofit development. They get it and they do it.
After volunteering for transitions for more than 3 years (6 months of which was full-time in Cambodia) I am proud to say that I continue to be impressed by the organization's effectiveness and integrity. This organization is something special - real people who have made something happen that is truly extraordinary. Transitions is undoubtedly a leader in their field , and the organization's work in Cambodia is profound. Having personally seen the lives they have been able to touch, I would encourage anyone to get involved and learn more about this incredible organization.
In a time when everyone seemingly wanted to jump on the anti-trafficking bandwagon, I was searching for the world's leading experts in this field…and I believe I found them! The Ponds (founders of TG) are not only incredibly dedicated to the aftercare of children rescued from trafficking, they are also extraordinarily committed to adhering to the most honoring, educated and informed guidelines for the rehabilitation of these kids. Just look at their board of directors and advisors: https://transitionsglobal.org/about/board/
It was such an incredible honor to be chosen as a Transitions intern. I spent the summer of 2011 in Cambodia photographing these precious children who otherwise would have been experiencing atrocities unimaginable. As I got to know the organization, I was so incredibly impressed with the excellence by which every little detail is carried out. I appreciated the fact that Transitions had empowered Cambodian nationals to fill many of the leadership positions throughout. I also appreciated how highly the girls and their dreams were honored and esteemed. The healing process incorporates a multi-faceted plan of rehabilitation specifically designed for these children. Transitions provides two or more hours per week of one-on-one counseling with a professional counselor, and a curriculum containing goal-setting, positive reinforcement, dreaming big and level achievements—all bundled into a family-style environment. The relationships these kids have with the staff, founders, counselors and especially the house mothers—seriously touched my heart! It is certainly the most holistic approach to aftercare I have seen in the worldwide anti-trafficking movement.
In America, I currently work with a similar population and they are often seen as criminals...The American residential facilities could benefit tremendously from the Transitions’ model. Oh if Americans cared for children impacted by sexual trauma in such a profound way!
Overall, I believe Transitions stands out as a global leader in the anti-trafficking campaign because they are so intentional about seeking out the best practices, preserving the dignity of those rescued, constantly educating themselves and others, incorporating the most innovative approaches to healing and restoration, and underneath it all is a family with an incredible heart who have sacrificed everything for the cause. The longer I know James and Athena Pond, the more impressed I am by their commitment to excellence in everything they do. Support this organization in any way you possibly can!
I had the benefit of touring with Transitions global in Cambodia this past January. We toured not only their agency, but related social service offices that they work with and directly impact the anti-trafficking community in that part of the world. I have never been on anything like it. Impressed does not even begin to explain that experience. Transitions global is doing amazing work that is empowering, strength-based, self-reflective and intellectual. They know what they're doing and they are dedicated to improving themselves and serving their client based as much as physically possible. I love this organization! Touring with them changed my life and I cannot wait to go back to Cambodia largely because of the experience I had learning about their fabulous agency and the kind of work they do to improve their clients lives. Athena and James are hero's in my book. I am just astonished at what they have been able to accomplish - especially not coming from social service backgrounds. They get it, the understand it and what they don't understand, they research, investigate, debate and struggle to master until they succeed. I would encourage anyone to learn more about Transitions Global and recommend to anyone that has the time to go on one of their tours of their facility in Cambodia - it will change your life.
I and 7 of my graduate art therapy students from Naropa University are fortunate to have formed a partnership with Transitions to bring art therapy training to the clinical staff. In considering a partnership we looked long and hard to find an organization we felt was not only offering quality care, with good end results, but also had an impressive financial report. Athena and James, and the staff work diligently to uphold their principles and values, and their success is unprecedented. Transitions is doing cutting edge work in their aftercare program, integrating evidenced based models of therapy to address the complex trauma histories with which the girls present. As a professor in a counseling and art therapy program and having a good understanding of trauma, and sexual abuse, I was quite impressed with the solid and high quality program they have at Transitions that is not only holistic in it's approach, but it works too! Art therapy has been welcomed and incorporated into the girls treatment as well as for self care for the staff in dealing with their own vicarious trauma. Transitions offers a model of care that other aftercare programs in Southeast Asia and the West should aspire to be like.
I had the opportunity to go with my husband after our wedding to Cambodia, and I can honestly say this was one of the most educational experiences I have had traveling overseas. There are many organizations out there that educate on the importance of education in sex trafficking, which is great, and it is vital to our communities, but not only does Transitions bring awareness to this issue, but when I was there it was so refreshing to see them handling this issue hands on, actually working with these girls, and giving them all the therapy they need. My experience in Cambodia was AMAZING! I got to learn about this unfortunate issue through James and Athena, as well as being able to see the work they do. They took me to the houses for the girls. I was just blown away by the resources that are being used to work with these girls, honestly I did not even know this was possible.. The conditions of these places are amazing, and these Girls are so Fortunate to have James and Athena as well as the amazing staff by their sides, although Transitions would probably say that they are fortunate to have these girls by their side.... the love for organization and the Girls is just heart warming and unbelievable to me. I look forward to going there again soon, and getting our families involved as well as much as we can.
In a time when sex trafficking has become such a buzz topic that seems to be just about everywhere, you can find new non-profits popping up literally daily. It can sometimes make it feel confusing when deciding who to suppport, but feel assured that when supporting Transitions you are supporting an organization with a well educated wholistic approach to the after care of girls that have been victims of sex trafficking. They didn't just pop up yesterday, they have an amazing track record of success. As someone who has actually had the opportunity to travel to Cambodia and witness their operations first hand, this organization has my heart. Not to mention that they offer vocational training and college preperation for girls to realize their dreams and live succesful lives beyond the dream home.
We have had the honor of working in tandem with James and Athena Pond for the past four years and I can honestly say our partnership with them and their great organization Transitions Global has been a highlight to a very dark epidemic. Educating and bringing awareness to Human Trafficking in America is not an easy task, but having the Pond family and their organization lead the way makes even a hard task seem easy. Transitions Global is an organization whose mission has had major impacts on combating human trafficking and exploitation domestically and globally – these impacts not only have saved lives but have restored the self-esteem to so many victims. Transitions Global’s efforts on education, prevention and awareness need to be commended without a doubt but it’s the ongoing restoration and aftercare to many victims that should be applauded; what they have done for these kids is remarkable! We are honored to call them not only our partners but our friends! Michelle A. Bart, President NWCAVE
“With little expectations going into the trip, I did not anticipate the profound impression the Cambodian people, the team at Transitions Global and the girls they serve would have on me. A small glimpse into the world of young women trapped in sex trafficking and compared to those in the aftercare of Transitions Global provided a paradigm shift of realization for me. The girls are all essentially the same; those in sex trafficking have little or no hope, and those experiencing the transformative care of the Transitions Global team are full of hope and dreams. While the darkness and evil of sex trafficking is bigger than I realized, the people, work and methods of Transitions Global are a tangible and profound offensive shown in the transformation of each girls they serve. The experience has sent an echo into my heart that will continue into eternity.”
- Bill Chiaravalle
I had the fantastic opportunity to spend time with Transitions Global during a trip to Cambodia this past summer, and I cannot even begin to describe the love and respect I have for James and Athena Pond and everyone else at TG. I have personally met with a handful of anti-trafficking organizations and researched many, many more, and TG is simply the best out there when it comes to rehabilitation/restoration of sex trafficking victims.
Although learning about TG's success rate and innovative methodology and meeting with TG's amazing staff certainly impressed me, the true test came when I met the girls, and I was absolutely blown away. Coming into the trip, my team and I knew that we would have the opportunity to spend some time with the sex trafficking survivors at TG, and we had prepared ourselves to meet sad, broken little girls. I cannot even describe how wrong we were. The girls at TG were completely filled with joy and excitement. They were welcoming, friendly, extremely smart, and all smiles. They looked nothing like victims. For example, one night my group hosted a game night, and we had talked extensively how we needed to make sure that all of the girls were involved and that some of the more shy girls didn't get left out. Well, there was one girl there who, rather than being shy and timid, actually was worried about me and whether I was involved; she came up to me when I was taking a break from a very active game to make sure I wasn't feeling left out and that I felt comfortable and happy. I was awestruck by her maturity and compassion, and that's just one of many examples I can think of about the amazing restoration going on at TG.
In the midst of all of the horrors I would see and hear about in Cambodia, the TG girls provided me with new hope for survivors of sex trafficking. I know now that survivors CAN be fully restored and equipped, not just for a menial, mediocre existence, but for awesome fulfilling lives. Transitions Global has developed a formula to make this happen. Every sex trafficking victim safehome in the world NEEDS to experience the Transitions Global Model!
Review from Guidestar
Transitions Global is an organization made up of people who show genuine love for Cambodian people! In my experience of working with James and Athena, I can see that they whole-heartedly love and care for Cambodians. They continue to do loads of amazing projects for young girls who just feel hopeless, giving them fresh opportunities and hope for the future. They provide them with essential life skills so that they can experience success, allowing their dreams to be fulfilled. As a Cambodian young man, I am thrilled to see the positive impact Transitions Global is having on my country. Transitions Global inspires me to do the same.
Review from Guidestar
I am so impressed with Transitions Global and their mission of rescuing and helping girls who's lives have been stolen by sex trafficing. This organization offers hope when none seem present and gives girls a start at a new life. I only wish there was more funding that could assist in enhancing their services and reaching out to even more girls.
Review from Guidestar
Transitions Global is a dedicated and progressive organization. It provides an incredibly high level of aftercare services for girls rescued from sex trafficking in Cambodia. There very low rates of recidivism are a direct reflection of the individualized care and high quality of services that are provided through the organization.
Review from Guidestar
Transitions Global is serving as a well established facility in Cambodia to reach out to sex trafficked women to rehabilitate and restore them to productive lives within their cultural context. I direct a program that integrates a student ministry component that often involves students working with non-profits. I also have done a significant amount of non-profit work, both involved with sex trafficking within an academic context of organizing serve trip for University to go to Thailand as well as village development in El Salvador serving the rural poor. These activities caused me to have great interest in Transitions Global, as well as recognizing the local community problem of sex trafficking within Portland. My husband and I travelled to Cambodia to visit the Transitions Global facility. We were highly impressed with the organization that has been established and wish to recommend James and Athena Pond in their efforts of establishing and continuing Transitions Global. We met the staff and girls, learned of the trauma they go through and the process of their rehabilitation. We are also fully aware and involved in Transitions efforts to raise support within the United States. Our son and his wife have served on staff with this organization in Cambodia and are highly supportive of this activity here and abroad. I highly recommend this organization for award. It is well run, has a well trained, strong staff, is cognizant of working within cultural contexts, works with other NGOs to make the most of what is available to them so as not to waste resources, and provide a safe work environment with training for those that support their facility overseas. They look to establish more facilities based on this model, so are moving forward with this goal in an appropriate manner. We have done work with other non-profits and find this to be one of the better and more efficient operations we have come in contact with. KUDOS to Transitions Global, we give our votes to you and hope you do too!!
Review from Guidestar
Transitions Global is emerging as the "go to" source on how to provide effective aftercare for girls that have been exploited and traumatized as a result of sexual exploitation. The success rate of Transitions Global is over 5 times that of other aftercare homes. Why? I believe it is a direct result of the involvement of the founders, James and Athena Pond, and the way they truly love the girls under their care.
Transitions Global cares passionately about restoring the dreams of these girls. They care passionately about providing a place of healing with a variety of methods to so from therapy to yoga.
I once was speaking to a volunteer who had returned from Cambodia and saw first hand the transformation of the girls. She was able to see girls that were new to the home as well as the beautiful women that had blossomed after being in the home for some time. She could not stop crying as she explained the experience to me and admitted that for the first few months from returning she could not even speak about it. Why? Because it was so sad? No, she said. Because it was so beautiful. It is so beautiful what Transitions Global is doing for these girls. She expressed that it was nothing short of a miracle.
True beauty is found in the hearts of those that operate Transitions Global and as a result hope is being restored and lives are being changed. I can think of nothing more miraculous or beautiful than that.
Review from Guidestar
I visited Cambodia two years ago in an attempt to look for different organizations that were working on the issue of human trafficking and then choose the best ones to support. While there are many great organizations, one stood out above all the rest and has since stolen my heart! This was Transitions Global.
While I was in Cambodia, I had a chance to learn about the culture, the issue of human trafficking, and specifically sex trafficking. I also got to meet the girls that Transitions Global serves, and I had the privilege of interviewing three of the girls for a documentary I was working on.
I have been over seas several times for mission and humanitarian work, and each time there is always a moment that I remember forever. On this trip, this moment was in the middle of one of these interviews. While we were filming and listening to the horrific stories that these girls had experienced, we kept getting a lot of background noise that was interfering with the recording. The background noise, while ruining the current recording, was the most beautiful sound I have ever heard. It was the sound of laughter and singing.
The other girls, that had been cared for by Transitions Global, were downstairs with one of the board members. She had brought an iPod from the US and she and the girls were laughing, dancing, singing, and just being teenage girls.
The sounds of laughter, singing, health, hope, and a future, while contrasted with the horror stories that I was listening to, was amazing and it led to a moment that I will never forget!
Review from Guidestar
I had a chance to personally visit the aftercare facilities in Cambodia provided by Transitions Global.... amazing! They are top notch -- from the forward-thinking founders to the professionals who work with the young women rescued and now in recovery. Understanding the personal passions and needs of the girls helps to get them pointed in a career direction where they can prosper, heal and function as adults. I would guess many new leaders in the field will come out of the T.G. organization to help educate others... just as leaders have already emerged and are speaking out from their own experiences.
I know James and Athena Pond sacrificed much to uproot their entire family and move to Cambodia to study the human trafficking situation personally. Their absolute devotion and love for the girls is second to none. Their professional approach in treating each with respect is second to none. Transitions Global uses advanced learning techniques second to none. Their graduates do not just sew or become beauty consultants.... they become yoga teachers, accountants, involved in personnel administration -- whatever their interest is, is what they get training on. I so admire EVERYTHING T.G. is trying to accomplish.
I would rate them far above 5 stars .... whatever is TOP, that is where I would place them.
Review from Guidestar
I am fortunate to work with many organizations that are working hard to make create change and make our world a better place.
Of all these organizations, Transitions Global stands as the absolute best in the field of restoration work for girls who have been rescued from sex slavery
James and Athena Pond are two of the most inspiring people I have had the privilege to work with in the human rights field. Their bold courage and determination, along with innovative and cutting-edge restorative techniques, create a positive and lasting difference in the lives of young girls rescued from sexual exploration. This family's passion and dedication to the human trafficking issue is truly amazing.
Not one aspect of the girls' recovery is overlooked or is too challenging for Transitions Global. Their leadership team has developed a philosophy of building self-esteem and confidence in the girls with reintegration back into society as the central purpose of each girl's care and program. James and Athena’s vision of hope, restoration and education turns a dark subject to a whole new level of HOPE!
I just spent a week with the Transitions Global team and the girls in Phnom Penh doing a workshop on mind/body connectedness via the True Body Project, a program I founded to work with girls who need help returning to a safe connection with their bodies.
It was one of the most meaningful experiences of my life. The girls are remarkable and open and caring, in large part because the Transitions Global staff is a unique blend of caring and professionalism, marrying best practices and evidence based clinical work with culturally sensitive decisions.
Really, one of the finest organizations I have ever had the pleasure to work with.
Review from Guidestar
I've worked with several organizations in Southeast Asia, and when it comes to aftercare facilities for sex trafficking survivors, the people at Transitions Global are the leaders in their field. James and Athena have dedicated their lives to the girls they help, giving them a chance to dream again after extreme cases of abuse. The staff they employ are top notch and are dedicated to the cause. The work Transitions Global does is truly inspiring.
Review from Guidestar
I visited Transitions Global during a media trip to Cambodia with my organization. I did not know of them thought they came highly recommended. I was impressed by:
- the scope of knowledge of their founders, James and Athena Pond
- the systematic and structured professionalism of the program
- the strength and capacity of the women in the program
- the counseling services and level and systemization of clinical support provided
- the peer endorsements I heard during and since
- the quality of education and communication provided to donors
I wholeheartidly endorse Transitions Global
Review from Guidestar