Affinity Groups and Demographics

We believe every human being has the right to experience empathy and compassion and to live in a world that is safe and just for themselves, their families, and communities. We define diversity as a group of people who embody a wide range of identities, voices, experiences, and beliefs, who come together through a shared sense of humanity to form a community. We believe holding retreats for specific identity groups is a powerful way to build out our multi-identity beloved mindful community. We believe that at times racial caucusing can make mindfulness more accessible to groups that have been historically underserved. Join us as we examine the demographic makeup of our community as a first step to identifying a strategy to not only welcome diverse groups, but also retain them in our community year after year.

The racial demographics of a given space contribute to its ‘racial character,’ especially for those in the minority. In workplaces, communities, campuses, and even countries in which the demographics are skewed so that one or more social identity groups’ members feel more ‘at home’ than others, the views of the more populous group(s) will shape the sense of what is true or acceptable there.” – Rhonda Magee, The Inner Work of Racial Justice

Communities of Color Retreats and Courses

White Anti-Racist Caucus

Below is an excerpt from our 2022 Annual report displaying our most recent residential retreat demographics.

With the pandemic mostly behind us, our impact increased in breadth and depth, while the need for tuition support hit an all-time high.

In addition to the infographic below, here’s a look at the diversity of our teen retreat participants last year:

  • 45% of participants identified as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual+ (LGBTQIA+).
  • 43% of participants identified as Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color (BIPOC).
  • 19% of participants identified as neurodiverse.
  • 68% of participants accessed therapy in the past year.
  • 72% of participants were attending their first retreat.
  • 17 was the participants’ average age.
  • $66,936 was the average household income reported.

“Before I attended the TOC Retreat, I had never experienced such a profound and life changing connection to the people and space around me. I am now devoted to my mindfulness practice. Through practice, I’ve manifested inner love, healing, and stability through expressing my gratitude for what supports me. I am patiently releasing toxic patterns and attachments that aren’t in alignment with dreams I never knew I had until I met my Inward Bound family. Once I returned from retreat I came to the realization that Portland is seriously lacking in diversity and inclusion. I plan to one day cultivate a colorful community of spiritual support here in Portland. I’m so grateful for the beautiful humans at Inward Bound who’ve inspired me to inspire, spread love, and heal for rest of my existence. ️I am looking forward to volunteering as a mentor in the future.”

– Teens of Color Retreat Participant