Sustaining Compassion

We see compassion as the flora of renewal in the world. Compassion is a way of being that is oriented toward mutuality, care, tolerance, decency, a celebration of diversity and interdependence, personal confidence, a respect for otherness, and the ability to navigate difference with grace and humility.

The wilderness encounters that we guide are designed to cultivate the spirit of compassion where necessary, and to sustain it where cultures of compassion have already taken root.

That’s why we devote our efforts to finding ways to make our experiences of renewal accessible to the compassionate professionals that we know the best - care providers, justice workers, and faith leaders. 

Care Providers

Who ease others' aches, find resources for tangible needs, and insistently advocate for quality of life.

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Justice Workers

Who spark resistance to inequality, amplify marginalized voices, and craft solutions to social ills.

Faith Leaders

Who practice presence, embrace difficulties, explore questions, and prompt progress.

We are seeking groups and organizations of care providers, justice workers, and faith leaders to partner with in sustaining cultures of compassion. We want to support the longevity of your work by bringing renewal into the lives of your workers.

Our custom encounters are highly intentional and intentionally simple. We focus our expertise as wilderness guides on creating safe space for profound encounters to occur. As facilitators we prompt reflection and conversation, exploring intersections of spiritual and professional sustainability. We always create opportunities for rest and for building resilience; opportunities for solitude and for building solidarity.

Our base of operations is in Portland Maine, with lots of proximity to hiking, paddling and camping. The nature of Renewal in the Wilderness also travels well. Whether we rendezvous somewhere wild near us or somewhere west of our base - if we can find a place to go for a walk, to paddle a canoe, to set up camp - then we'll make space for renewal.

Spectrum of Renewal

The encounters we design span a spectrum of duration and degree of immersion into the wilderness. The Community Trips that we offer give a good sense of the sort of experiences we can customize for your group or organization, from Beauty Walks to backcountry immersions.

Our Beauty Walks

With some imagination wilderness will become apparent in parks, nature preserves, and even sidewalks with proximity to urban areas. These are less immersive, more brief explorations of the wilderness at hand. We practice wilderness by making the familiar strange.

Our Backcountry Trips

These are multi-day immersions into the elements and rhythms of life away from our usual distractions. They provide more time to get grounded and ample space for rest and challenge, for personal reflection and creative collaboration. We engage wilderness as spiritual practice.

Partners in Renewal

When we partner with you - way before we pack our packs and stretch our muscles - we will explore the particular needs and hopes of your group. Where necessary we’ll help temper your intentions to fit the pace of renewal, while also weaving your goals in with our simple and flexible intentions to: Show up. Pay attention. Make space. Listen. Be curious. Open up. Re-sensitize. Ponder. Discuss. Stay put. Break bread. Keep moving. Be honest. Wonder. And come back ready to impact the world with spirits of compassion.

As a nonprofit organization our development goals are strategically aligned with our mission, which hinges on making encounters with wilderness accessible to care providers, justice-workers, and faith leaders. Our success in achieving our mission is bolstered by the generosity of donors and sponsors. If you or an organization you represent have the capacity to help us help the helpers, please do.