Young people deserve our best attention and the greatest support we can offer, especially when it comes to teaching them the tools and resources they need to nurture their minds, spirit, and bodies.
Mindfulness is our passion. Inward Bound Mindfulness formed from the foundation of a 30-year lineage of teen mindfulness which began with retreats offered in Barre, Massachusetts in 1989. It is from this foundation that co-founder Jessica Morey, who attended her first retreat at age 14, was inspired to launch a nonprofit dedicated to teaching mindfulness to young people. Since its founding in 2010, Inward Bound has grown from a nonprofit based in Washington, DC to an international organization that holds retreats across the US, Canada, the United Kingdom, and online — all offered with no teen ever turned away for lack of funds.
Our mission is to provide in-depth mindfulness programming for youth and the parents and professionals who support them. Inward Bound’s programs guide participants in developing self-awareness, compassion, and ethical decision making, and empowers them to apply these skills in improving their lives and communities.
With its core mission of teen mindfulness, Inward Bound also practices Equity & Interdependence within and without the organization, specifically fostering a Collaborative Leadership model for shared decision-making and strategy-building across diverse staff, teachers, mindfulness practitioners, youth and young adults, and a myriad of committees. We invite you to learn more about our talented Collaborative Leadership Team and Teachers and Mentors.
The Inward Bound Mindfulness Model
Mindfulness, simply defined, is observing what’s happening in the present moment, with kindness and curiosity. We introduce young people to the practice of mindfulness by leading them through guided meditations, mindful movement, small group discussions and engaging group activities.
Using innovative formats and teaching frameworks, we impart lessons in self-awareness, empathy, and employ techniques to calm and focus the mind. A deep sense of calm can be felt just hours into many of our retreats as mindfulness practices help deep listening skills and communication, essential competencies for success in all areas of life. Our retreats also teach how to apply mindfulness skills to daily life, along with ways to connect with nature and practice creative expression. The uniqueness of the Inward Bound retreat model is that it allows participants to gain a level of insight into their own experience and achieve authentic connection with peers that is often challenging to achieve in their daily lives.
Steeped in Science
Research on the impact of Inward Bound retreats has demonstrated that, following their retreat, teens experienced increased self-compassion and life satisfaction, along with decreased rumination and reactivity. Young adults and parents regularly share that Inward Bound programs are transformative. More than 50% of participants return for future retreats and demand for our programs continue to grow across the US and internationally.
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Learn about the beautiful resilience of Inward Bound youth.
ABC Newsman Dan Harris interviewed Jessica Morey about her journey to meditation and Inward Bound.
A journalist describes the experience of an Inward Bound retreat, plus an interview with Jessica Morey.
University of Pittsburgh researchers explore the benefits and spectrum of experiences by teens during Inward Bound retreats.
A spotlight on two programs offering different approaches to mindfulness training amid a soaring mental health crisis