Contemplative Climate Leadership for Youth Online Course

Contemplative Climate Leadership for Youth

Thursday nights 7:30-9pm EDT/4:30-6pm PDT
April 16, 23, 30, May 7 • Online via Zoom
Ages 14-25

Contemplative Climate Leadership for Youth Course

Roots of Resilience

A Contemplative 4-week Course for Climate Concerned Teens

  • Are you concerned about the climate crisis?
  • Are you an advocate for the environment — or do you want to be?
  • Do you feel a range of emotions about what’s happening to our planet?
  • Would you benefit from practices and people to support you in your efforts?

Through guided mindfulness practice and rituals based in environmental activist Joanna Macy’s Work that Reconnects, this course supports youth in building the inner resiliency, compassion, and embodied interconnection to thrive in the crucial work of advocating for a livable planet and defending the earth they are inheriting.

As a committed and inspired group, together we will explore the themes of:

  • Connection to nature, gratitude for the natural world, and recognition of our belonging on the earth
  • Cultivating compassion for ourselves and the world
  • Grief rituals to collectively mourn the trauma of ecological collapse and social injustice
  • Building resilience skills through contemplative and relational mindfulness practices
  • Collaborative and restorative action that grows from connection and care — transforming despair and rage

Specific practices in Contemplative Climate Leadership for Youth include:

  • Guided sitting and walking meditation
  • Somatic relaxation techniques
  • Kindness, Compassion, Appreciative Joy, and Equanimity meditations
  • Nature connection
  • Creative expression for healing and strength
  • Small group sharing grounded in Nonviolent Communication
  • Coaching skills for sustainable activism in the face of crisis

Join this special, first-ever iBme offering! Get real, dive deep, and create connections with yourself and others that can make a critical difference in how we navigate this time of planetary change.

Teachers: Jessica Morey and Shea Riester

Jessica is a lead teacher and supports program strategy for iBme. She began practicing meditation at age 14 on teen retreats offered by the Insight Meditation Society (IMS). Before joining iBme, Jessica worked in clean energy and climate policy and finance at the World Bank, the Pew Center on Climate Change, and the Clean Energy States Alliance. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Engineering from Dartmouth and masters degrees in Sustainable Development and International Affairs. Her published works range from the chapter “Ordinary Awakening” in Blue Jean Buddha to Conflict Resolution of the Boruca Hydro-Energy Project: Renewable Energy Production in Costa Rica. In 2014, Jessica wrote about the potential of contemplative practice to heal our relationship with the natural world in a Shambhala Sun article.

Shea has been a climate activist for ten years, and worked as a trainer and youth organizer with and Better Future Project. Shea is also a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Teacher and Somatic Experiencing Practitioner (SEP) in training. He has a background in Zen and has been a student of Thich Nhat Hanh since 2009. At the same time Shea has been engaging with and facilitating Joanna Macy’s “Work that Reconnects” for the last decade, using it to build resiliency in himself and fellow activists. Shea is deeply passionate about nonviolent social movements and supporting youth climate activists to thrive and have a powerful impact. Shea currently organizes with Extinction Rebellion NYC and helps to staff iBme northeast retreats.

“How can we wrap our minds and hearts around something so vast as the destruction of the ecosystems on which humans and most species depend for life and — instead of going mad or numb — grow interested? How do we slow down enough to take effective action before it’s too late? I believe contemplative practice has a central role to play.

Our environmental crisis is the ultimate opportunity to realize our interdependence and act accordingly with compassion and wisdom. To confront the climate crisis, a critical mass of us must decide to trust and depend on each other. We must not only recognize but also act on our belonging to each other and the earth.” —Jessica Morey

Cost and Accessibility

The sliding scale for this 4-week Contemplative Climate Leadership for Youth course is $40 – $150.

If your family earns $75,000 or more per year then we request that you pay the full price. If your family earns less than $75,000/year, you may self-select an amount to pay. If you are in true economic hardship (e.g, recently lost job, health situation, etc.) we are offering the discounted rate of $40. If you cannot afford the discounted fee please email and we’ll make it work for you. No teen will be turned away for lack of funds.