Community Circle


TUESDAY, AUGUST 9: Educator Change Maker Circle
Co-Creating Liberated Education

A Full Day in Nature for Education Empowerment, Co-Creation & Liberation

We live in a world where an entire generation of kids are experiencing chronic stress, trauma, and emotional health disabilities. Children are showing up to school with completely different sets of worries and fears than in any previous generation. The current mainstream educational system is completely inept at being able to handle the social and emotional needs of kids and the challenges they face. Additionally academics are preparing kids with skills for a previous type of existence that is shifting faster than mainstream education can address.

The Educator Change Maker Circle is an opportunity to empower and connect educators to build skills, stamina, and coalition to be the change we want to see in education. There is so much in education that operates in silos, including many different attempts at alternative programs, schools, and initiatives. Let’s bring many hearts and minds together and discover what we can weave with intention for collective impact!

We are calling in teachers and professionals in the current education system who are trying to disrupt/advocating for change, educators who work in alternative teaching environments, professionals working in education-focused nonprofits, entrepreneurs who are starting alternative schools and education programs, nature and land-based education providers, and youth interested in proactively shaping the future of education.

The Educator Change Maker Circle is an attempt to bring together people who are envisioning and working towards building educational opportunities that can co-create liberated education for the future.

Educator Change Maker Circle
  • Cultivate ideas and next steps for continuing the conversations generated in circle and empowering coalition.
  • Share resources, experiences, and visions for building connection, collaboration, and co-creation together.
  • Demystify self-actualization and how we approach transformation through personal reflection, building trust in relationships, and cultivating courage to advocate for change.
  • Build relationships with education visionaries, trauma responsive teachers, whole child advocates, equity and belonging disruptors, and people working in education who are dreaming and weaving how to co-create liberated education.

Grandmother Cherry Sanctuary
Plainfield, Vermont


Tuesday, August 9, 2022


8:30 am – 4:30 pm EST


Flow of the Day
A full day in spacious circle, outside and in nature. There will be a mix of full group, small groups, reflection time, and activities to support skills, stamina, relationship and coalition building.

Ornella Matta-Figueroa is a trauma informed wellness practitioner, education disruptor, and co-director of SafeArt, Inc. who brings dynamic vision, expertise, and co-creation actualization. Rae Carter is a dialogue facilitator, communication navigator, and culture builder who brings experience in collective impact and movement building. Mitch Pauley is a special education teacher, equity advocate, and youth trauma specialist who brings lived experience in education disruption and a whole child lens to education.

Please bring your own lunch. You are welcome to bring food to share on the communal offering table. If this feels stressful for you, please just bring what you need. Snacks will also be provided throughout the day and you are invited to share snacks if you feel called.

Mineral rich mountain water and herbal tea brewed from plants stewarded at the sanctuary will be available throughout the day.

We will gather outside, on the Earth, under the trees at the beautiful Grandmother Cherry Sanctuary in Plainfield, Vermont. Chairs and rain coverings will be provided. Please bring what you need to be comfortable (mat, blanket, pillow, clothing). This is a nature-based event and we will be outside all day. There is a friendly dog and cats on the premise who may participate at times.

Children are welcome who can enjoy the sanctuary with independence and/or who wish to join the circle as they feel called. Nursing babies are also welcome to attend. At this time we are not able to provide childcare for younger children although we are actively looking for people who would like to support EmpowR events in this way.

Directions and more details of how to prepare will be provided upon registration.


Payment is on a Sliding Fee Scale
$50-$250 per adult
No Cost for Youth

Please Note the Actual Cost of Program, per person is $175

If you can pay more, please help cover the cost for those with less. Your generosity is much appreciated.

If the sliding fee scale cost is still prohibitive, please contact us to discuss a different arrangement.

If your organization would like to sponsor this kind of program to help us expand accessibility and reach, please get in touch.


You will be asked to fill out some questions when you register to help us prepare for the event.

Please register by August 6.

EmpowR Sunburst


Life happens! If you are unable to attend, you can pay the cost forward to help someone else attend. You can also request a refund up to 24 hours in advance. Cancellation refunds include a small fee to cover credit card costs. No refunds for cancellations within 24 hours of a program.