Because we do scary things, when we accomplish it, it makes us proud and helps me to have more confidence in myself in the world.

– Coming of Age Participant



Gaia Passages draws from a variety of evidence-based best practices for youth and adult learning, with a particular emphasis on growing a deeply personal relationship with nature as teacher, guide, and lifelong friend. Through deep nature connection and multi-generational mentorship, we empower participants with social and emotional skills and training in ancient earth arts, crafts and technologies that are generally not taught in academic learning environments. Through Gaia Passages programs, participants can cultivate high emotional and ecological literacy, which we believe are essential to community resilience.


All of our programs incorporate these four pillars that work together to support the growth of strong, confident, and resilient young people.


Social and Emotional Resilience

Using improvisational theatre, song, games and embodied practices of personal and interpersonal skill-sets, we help our participants communicate with confidence and respond to the challenges that they face with peers, at school and at home.


Deep Nature Connection

All programs are place based so that participants form a relationship with the plants, animals, waters, rocks and ecosystem of their regular outdoor meeting spot. Embodied nature games, wanders on the land, natural crafts and ancestral skills are all taught to strengthen participant’s connection and care for the earth and in turn, themselves, and each other.


Coming of Age

Our circles begin in early childhood and are completed in the teenage years. We recognize and honor the passages that happen as youth pass from one developmental stage to another. We offer multi-generational support in approaching and moving through physical and emotional changes as youth grow into young adults.


Village Building

We offer adult programs throughout the year to develop nature connection and parenting skills. We encourage and support individuals and the whole family to form connections with members of our wise and respectful intergenerational community. In our youth programs, parents and caregivers are encouraged to build community by participating on special days with their youth.

According to parent survey data from our 2017 Growing Oaks program (formerly our Wildflower Circles), 80-90% of participants grew in the following areas as a result of Gaia Passages:

  • Curiosity and awareness of the natural world
  • Concern and care for the environment
  • Ability to use outdoor time to self-regulate emotionally
  • Confidence and courage
  • Ability to be assertive with peers and parents rather than passive or aggressive
  • Ability to use feelings and needs to express hard emotional states