Forest Therapy Guide Training

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Ottawa, Ontario - Cohort 36 (Full)

Jouvence Lodge in Winter
The world's most experienced forest therapy guide trainers invite you join a growing global movement and an activist community that is making a difference--by rebuilding the relationships between people and the more-than-human-world of nature.

Full with Wait List

Weeklong Intensive: Apr 26 - May 3 2019 | Practicum Ends: 17 November 2019
Carp Ridge EcoWellness Centre
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Carp, Ontario, Canada

Find peace at this deep-woods sanctuary...

A Forest Therapy Guide facilitates safe gentle walks, providing instructions—referred to as “invitations”—for sensory opening activities along the way. These walks follow a standard sequence. Each walk begins with establishing embodied contact with the present moment and place. Next come a series of connective invitations, often improvised in the moment and adapted to the needs of participants. These may be followed by wander time and/or sit spot. The walks end with a ceremony of sharing tea made from foraged local plants.

Forest therapy walks are not hikes in the traditional sense. An entire walk is typically 2 to 4 hours in duration and often covers no more than a quarter mile distance. In that short distance most people experience contact with nature in a much deeper way than they ever have prior to the walk. On Forest Therapy walks, people have a wide range of experiences, some of which they feel are significant, even profound. Guides are trained in the skills and perspectives needed to be supportive witnesses of these experiences.

During these walks people experience the therapeutic power of the forest. The forest itself is the therapist. We don't train therapists; we train guides. By slowing people down and facilitating sensory experiencing, guides open the doorways through which the forest can accomplish its healing work.

Our trainers are among the most experienced guides in the world and each one undergoes a rigorous training process beyond their certification as guides.

In this training, you will learn:

  • The Standard Sequence of Guided Forest Therapy Walks
  • Professional standards and competencies: what a Forest Therapy Guide should know and be able to do
  • The pedagogy and fundamentals of nature connection
  • Nature and forest therapy research and effects on health care and well-being
  • Our framework for the Way of the Guide, wisdom on the inner aspects of the art gained through decades of experience
  • The leadership skills and style of the Guide archetype
  • Creating space for others to find their own authentic nature connection
  • Accelerating connection to deep mindfulness and bodyfulness through simple sensory invitations
  • What makes a good setting for forest therapy
  • How to facilitate restorative human connection through storytelling and witnessing
  • Our theoretical framework of deep nature connection through embodiment, liminality, reciprocity and relationship
  • Sequencing forest therapy invitations for maximum impact and benefit
  • Expressive arts activities for forest therapy
  • Somatic techniques for embodied awareness
  • Our aim is simple: to train competent guides. However, many participants report that this training profoundly affects many aspects of their lives.
Who should attend
Schedule Overview

Conveniently located just 45 minutes from Ottawa International Airport, Carp Ridge EcoWellness Centre exemplifies the vision of a forest wellness center. ​Directed by Dr. Katherine Willow, N.D.,the Centre is a hub for a vibrant community of health and wellness practitioners. In addition to our acclaimed Forest Therapy Guide Training Program, participants will have the option to book and participate in additional wellness services, such as massage, reiki, yoga, meditation, and more (note: these services available by private arrangement, not included in tuition or lodging).

Carp Ridge EcoWellness Center is set on 196 acres of land that includes forest, wetlands, the rocky Carp Ridge, a pond, and mowed lawns for leisure activities. Trails marked with blue and yellow triangles weave through the forest, offering you several kilometres of walks. Proximity of the woodland to the B&B means you can take regular dips into the natural world, which will suffuse you with the smells of earth, the sounds of birds and insects, and the serenity of this beautiful land. In the Spring, pick wild blueberries, catch frogs, or walk alongside the creek!

About the Venue:

Carp Ridge EcoWellness Centre

Conveniently located just 45 minutes from Ottawa International Airport, Carp Ridge EcoWellness Centre exemplifies the vision of a forest wellness center. ​Directed by Dr. Katherine Willow, N.D.,the Centre is a hub for a vibrant community of health and wellness practitioners. In addition to our acclaimed Forest Therapy Guide Training Program, participants will have the option to book and participate in additional wellness services, such as massage, reiki, yoga, meditation, and more (note: these services available by private arrangement, not included in tuition or lodging).

Carp Ridge EcoWellness Center is set on 196 acres of land that includes forest, wetlands, the rocky Carp Ridge, a pond, and mowed lawns for leisure activities. Trails marked with blue and yellow triangles weave through the forest, offering you several kilometres of walks. Proximity of the woodland to the B&B means you can take regular dips into the natural world, which will suffuse you with the smells of earth, the sounds of birds and insects, and the serenity of this beautiful land. In the Spring, pick wild blueberries, catch frogs, or walk alongside the creek!

Lodging

Lodging:

There are a limited number of rooms, cabins, and tents available for rent. Camping is also available for those who bring their own equipment. All prices listed below are in CAD and include breakfast.

B&B shared rooms cost $120/day + tax

Strawbale cabins: $65/day + tax

Painted cabins: $65/day + tax

Prospector Tents: $85/day + tax (these include composting toilets)

Camping with your own gear: $45/day + tax. Staff at the centre will direct you to a spot.

The closest alternative accommodations are around 20 minutes away by car in Kanata.  ​Off-site participants are urged to adhere to the daily schedule, and to take special care to show up promptly in the morning 15 minutes before the scheduled start. Please let us know in advance if you will be staying off-site.

The B&B policies are available for review at https://ecowellness.com/accommodation-policies/

Transportation

Transportation:

Drive time from Ottawa to Carp Ridge EcoWellness Centre ranges from 30-45 minutes. Offsite lodging and commuting options available. 

Meals

Food:

Our meals are carefully designed to be utterly delicious and super healthy, with seasonal, local and organic ingredients, including delicacies wild-crafted from our woods and meadows.  Guests may choose from vegan and lacto-ovo vegetarian dishes for breakfast, adding in healthy meat, fish and poultry for optional lunches and dinners. We are well versed in accommodating food sensitivities, please see the registration form.

If you are coming for a healing stay, your diet will be therapeutically designed to meet your needs along with you or your referring health practitioner if you have one.

We have been feeding people healthy meals for years with delighted feedback. Repeated comments are that people didn’t know how wonderful food could be without animal products and how good it makes them feel.

Breakfasts are included in the overnight cost; lunches and dinners are available if ordered ahead.

We look forward to nourishing you — body, mind and soul!

View a sample Forest Retreat Menu

  

Breakfasts:

CREWC provides breakfast to those who are lodging with them.

Beverages: filtered well water; lemon water; an array of local, organic herbal teas (often foraged or grown on the property) as well as black and green tea; organic free-trade coffee (breakfast only); natural sweeteners (maple syrup, sucanat, honey, xylitol); dairy (raw, organic, grass-fed Jersey milk) and non-dairy milks; locally made kombucha; locally tapped maple sap

Whole grains: wheat and gluten-free breads; hot and cold cereals (oatmeal, rice cream, quinoa); home-baked muffins; buckwheat pancakes

Proteins: organic nut butters; baked beans; dried nuts and seeds; vegan and whey protein smoothies; local organic goat and cow cheeses; yogurt (dairy and non-dairy); local, organic eggs

Fats: coconut oil; organic butter; organic cream

Vegetables: grilled organic tomatoes; home-made tomato ketchup; home-grown sprouts; home-grown greens; fried potatoes; whole vegetable juices

Fruit: local, organic fruit in season; organic apple sauce; organic dried fruit; fruit salad; whole fruit smoothies

Other: dried seaweed; Herbamare salt; nutritional yeast; cumin; turmeric; cinnamon

 

Lunches:

Lunches are simple: hearty vegan soups for here or to go with sandwiches, raw veggies or salad, fruit and a small healthy sweet.  Beverages as above.

Lunch is available for $15.00/day + tax. All prices are in CAD. Both meals must be booked in advance so that the venue’s staff know how many meals to prepare.

 

Dinners:

Dinners are composed of similar ingredients with the addition of wild fish, organic poultry and grass-fed beef on occasion.

Dinner is available for $25.00/day + tax. All prices are in CAD. Both meals must be booked in advance so that the venue’s staff know how many meals to prepare.

If you have any questions about the food, please contact us.

CREWC uses mostly organic and local foods and enjoy picking vegetables from their garden in the summer months and wildcrafting in the forest.  They are able to accommodate a variety of diets, but must be told about any food allergies or preferences when people make reservations to ensure that they have adequate time to accommodate any changes.


Tuition

Tuition for the six-month Guide Training and Certification Program is $3410 USD. This includes the week-long intensive training and six months of mentored practicum. It does not include travel, lodging, ground transportation, or meals. If you wish to book with the Carp Ridge EcoWellness Centre, you must make your own arrangements; the cost is not included in the tuition. Please check current exchange rates for conversion to CDN or other currencies.

About the Venue:

Carp Ridge EcoWellness Centre

Carolynne Crawley is a Mi'kmaw woman with mixed ancestry from the East Coast. She is dedicated to social and environmental justice and supporting Indigenous led community work related to food sovereignty and food security.  Carolynne has worked with one of Canada’s largest food security organizations for the past decade.  She was the Indigenous Food Access Manager.  During her time as the IFA Manager, she worked with remote communities along the James Bay to support the increase of access to affordable and healthy foods, developed a cross cultural youth program focusing upon the Indigenous way of being in relationship with land, and organized a province wide Indigenous Food Sovereignty Gathering that included ceremonies and networking opportunities.  In a previous role, she built school food gardens, created and facilitated curriculum -linked food literacy programs for both students and teachers.

Carolynne is passionate about connecting people with the land, themselves, and with each other.  She leads workshops in relationship building to develop and strengthen  healthy, reciprocal relationships based upon Indigenous teachings that decolonize existing interactions with the land.   She is also a Forest Therapy Trainer and Mentor.  She leads trainings world-wide.  She is also a Registered Holistic Nutritionist.  On occasion she offers workshops focusing upon healthy eating on a budget.  Previously, Carolynne has worked, as a Child & Youth Worker for two decades supporting people with developmental and mental health needs.


Carolynne is in the process of launching her new business, in early 2019, Msit Nokmaq which translates to All of My Relations in Mi’kmaw.  She has had the pleasure of working with universities and colleges to create opportunities for students to deepen their understanding of food security and food sovereignty, along with connecting with the land.  Currently, Carolynne works as an Independent Contractor, Consultant, and Public Speaker.

Stana Luxford Oddie

Forest Therapy Guide, Mentor and Trainer

Stana has been working for the Cataraqui Region Conservation Authority (CRCA) for over twenty years as the Senior Conservation Educator.  Inspired by Earth Education, the Coyote’s Guide to Nature Connection and Forest schools, Stana aims to connect people with their head, heart and hands to nature.  Through the CRCA, Stana brings Forest Therapy walk experiences to the community, private and public organizations and continues to pilot Forest Therapy to elementary and secondary school aged children and youth.  The CRCA was the first conservation authority in Ontario to offer Forest Therapy which is now rapidly spreading to other CAs.

Stana received her BA from the University of Waterloo in 1998, in the Applied Studies Co-op program with Honours History. She earned her Bachelor of Education at Queen’s in 1999 from the Specialized Outdoor and Experiential Education Program.

Her work related to Forest Therapy continues to open her heart and deepen her relationship with all beings.