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“In the depths of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.” —Albert Camus
As we close 2020, I feel both deep gratitude and deep grief. This tumultuous year has torn some people apart and brought others closer. We have witnessed and experienced more than we could have imagined had we cast our thoughts forward at this time last year.
I am deeply grateful for all of you and wish you health and well-being as we embark upon 2021.
Click here to view the newsletter and read on: https://mailchi.mp/whidbeyinstitute/volunteer-1122593
A Winter Wish for You
Our winter wish: that each and every one of you has abundant access to what is healing and hopeful for you. Perhaps this looks like fresh food, warm shelter, deep rest, and joyous companionship (yes, even if it must be through Zoom!). May you experience the space to rest, connect, and reflect in this quiet season.
We wish you the very happiest of holiday seasons, and on this Winter Solstice we offer our warmest welcome to the brighter days ahead.
Note: this Featured Program story was excerpted from our 2019-2020 Gratitude Report.
We asked program leader Victoria Santos how, with Debra Baker, she concieved and co-hosted the 2019 Nourishment Retreat. Here are her reflections:
The Nourishment retreat came out of my own realization that women of color, and black women in particular, needed a space to recharge, to be nourished, to heal, and to share their stories. I know the healing power of the Whidbey Institute—the intention with which the space was cultivated, the way the land is stewarded, and the way the food nourishes. I wanted to put all of that in the service of BIPOC women.
But then, this isn’t your typical year.
We usually publish a comprehensive Gratitude Report in late April, sharing stories of what you nurtured, supported, and inspired with your donations during the previous calendar year. This late winter and early spring, however, the world was just beginning to grapple with the profound impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. In March, our calendar—usually filled with transformational learning programs—was suddenly wiped clean. In late March through May, much of our team was furloughed and it didn’t feel like the right time to invest in producing a retrospective of 2019. Staffing is currently at about 35% of pre-COVID levels—including our furloughed kitchen team—and we couldn’t be here without you. We are so grateful to our community of donors, without whom our ongoing care of this vital place and our operational core would not be possible. Read More →
Our Outlook for Winter and Beyond
Effective November 16, we have paused hosting in response to new guidance from Washington State Governor Jay Inslee. All in-person programs, including garden tours and volunteer work parties, are cancelled through the end of 2020. Our team continues to tend the land, and we are grateful for the ongoing care that individuals and families are providing through our Adopt-A-Trail program. Read More →
By Marnie Jackson
A few months ago, I got an email from Daniel, a Duke University student, about a new nonprofit called You Change Earth. Its stated mission: “Millions of caring people could be making a difference for our environment, yet simply don’t know how. We are dedicated to helping every one of these people find their role in the climate solution.”Daniel wondered if I might be interested in learning more, or helping spread the word, about You Change Earth. Read More →