Along with people, families, businesses, and organizations everywhere, the Whidbey Institute has been profoundly impacted by COVID-19. As a result, 2020 fundraising efforts are focused on our ability to care for the land and each other. When you give, you help steward 106 acres of conservation forest, you help bring our staff team back to work as soon as possible, and you provide support for the transformative programs that support us in building pathways to our collective future.
In this moment of collective uncertainty, we have an opportunity:
- To care for one another through disruption and instability.
- To hold space for hope and bold vision as well as for the very real fear, stress, and grief we are experiencing.
- To sense and tend to what wants to emerge.
- To nurture and be nurtured by nature.
- To have the deep, heart-led conversations that build our pathways to the future.
“I think a big part of the heartbreak of our time is that as a society we’re not good at dialogue right now. We talk about polarization. We talk at or talk over, but we don’t really know how to talk through, together, the things that are most essential to us. Part of what we practice here is dialogue—conversations that matter.”
—Sharon Daloz Parks
The Whidbey Institute has five decades’ experience stewarding place, nurturing community, and co-creating experiences that support our personal and collective transformation. With its long history as a place to discover and care for what is emerging in our hearts, our communities, and our larger society, the Whidbey Institute is needed more than ever in this moment of re-understanding our ways of being human on Earth. Thank you for your gift in support of this work.
What’s the status of Whidbey Institute 2020?
COVID-19 and the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” Order have impacted the timing but not the importance of our WI2020 Capacity-Building Initiative. Next steps include completion of the Caretaker Cabin, still on track and scheduled for Autumn this year. A small but dedicated crew has continued construction, with strict attention to public health and social distancing recommendations.
Completion of the Cabin will provide a safe, warm home for current and future caretakers and will create space for the future construction of ADA-accessible lodging in our heartland.
In light of our need to direct 2020 fundraising to operational support, the Cabin Village Commons design is being adjusted in order to ensure that we can cover the full cost of construction—including design, construction, furnishings, and technology—with funds and pledges already received. The redesigned building will still meet all of our objectives, providing a warm and welcoming space for programmatic gathering and social connection, a kitchen, and bathrooms. With this prudent approach, we hope to host work in a beautiful, green-built Commons as early as 2021.
We have continued to work with our partners, Young Women Empowered and Partners for Youth Empowerment, on the Legacy Forest Youth Campus vision. We are pausing for a collective deep breath during the disruptions caused by COVID-19. We’ll meet with our partners again in the fall to determine next steps.
We thank everyone who’s given to WI2020 thus far—because of your generosity, we have dedicated funding to complete the Caretaker Cabin and the Cabin Village Commons despite the interruption of COVID-19.