Running a business in a capitalist society
while working to grow alternative economic structures that regenerate life
is a tricky… business!
The core work of the Wildwood Path is to support large-scale social change by evolving our human belief systems and practices through direct experience with the more-than-human world around us. From our relationships with our ecosystems, we aim to reflect & learn about how we can contribute to the larger Wholes within which we are uniquely nested as individuals, organizations, and a species. Since one way in which we all interact with one another and the ecosystems around us is through the system we call “economics”, the Wildwood Path takes seriously the impacts of our economic choices, and we aspire to serve all Life through the ways in which we manage multiple forms of capital through our organization’s work. We invite you to join us in the experiment of investing in a regenerative economic system that uplifts the potential for exchange to change the world.
Gratitude and Acknowledgement
We feel a deep sense of gratitude to the many leaders from communities around the world who have been keeping these skills, practices, and ideas alive in the face of great threat and oppression for generations—often from the very same systems that benefit some of us at The Wildwood Path. It is our honor and joy to leverage some of the privileges within our organization in order to uplift these valuable folks in support of the evolution of our shared work for liberation. Therefore, if you are a Native person and/or a Person of Color, we hope you will take advantage of our Indigenous Tuition Waivers and our Reparations Awards. We know that we are in your debt and that your presence and engagement with our programs is a gift in and of itself! Regardless of whether you accept a waiver or award, if you would like to contribute other forms of capital towards our shared work through our sliding scale or barter/trade options, we joyfully commit to putting those investments towards uplifting the BIPOC leaders in our organization and to co-creating meaningful multi-cultural and multi-racial pathways forward for justice, healing, and hope. Let’s discuss how to make it all work!
For all who are part of The Wildwood Path, engaging with our pricing and financial structures is a shared learning process that reflects a commitment to engaging with reciprocity through many forms of capital while generating abundance. We are learning from our diverse and thriving ecosystems, where species of many varieties all live and work together in relationships that enable the ecosystem as a whole to respond to challenges with multiple emerging tactics. Therefore, there are several aspects to our economic system that we hope all work together to support a regenerative whole. Please join us in some or all of the following ways of “paying” for our programs and services!
Sliding Scale Payment System
Most of our programs and services are offered on a sliding scale basis. We assume that anyone interested in participating in our school would like to see our work succeed and is interested in contributing in a way that grows our capacity and their own. To that end, we offer a variety of ways for you to contribute in support of your unique abilities, the health of our community, and the potential for transformation in our world.
Whenever possible, we will name a rough “break even point” for a program or offering—this being the minimum amount of financial capital we would need to bring in per participant and/or program in order for the organization to continue meeting our financial obligations and therefore existing in our current economic context. Anyone who pays above this break even point is contributing to the abundance of the community and supporting the ability of our system to welcome all motivated people to work with us regardless of their level of access to financial capital. In some circumstances, when staff is able or willing to volunteer to some extent, we name two points: The minimum financial break even cost of the event AND the higher break even cost if we also pay staff a living wage. For these programs, if you pay less than the higher cost, you are asking staff to volunteer their time and skill for your sake.
In addition to naming break even costs for the sake of transparency, we also invite prospective clients to evaluate their own access to financial capital when determining their financial offerings. We assume that people and groups with more access to financial capital will contribute more financial capital for the sake of investing in the wellbeing of the whole while keeping financial contributions somewhat more proportional to financial access levels of clients. For long term engagements, we can suggest a rough scale relative to income level, organizational annual revenues, or other factors if you need help thinking about this.
Barter/Trade and Other Forms of Capital
In addition to financial transparency and flexibility, we are also thrilled to offer creative options for work trade, bartering, and other payments in non-financial capital—in fact, we encourage everyone to offer more than one form of capital for the sake of investing in the evolution of our exchange systems. If you would like to offer non-financial capital in addition to financial, we request that you consider what skills and services you can give that might support the organization to improve our offerings & systems and to increase our capacity to do our work, and then make a proposal for what you can commit to giving. For large-scale offerings, a staff member will be happy to talk this over with you to ensure a good fit! If it works for everyone, we will sign a contract with you and enter into the relationship, and you will be responsible for ensuring that you complete your offering.
Indigenous Tuition Waivers
Indigenous people are welcome to attend all Wildwood Path programs free of charge if they would like. As a predominantly non-Native-led organization operating on unceded Indigenous (Penobscot/Wabanaki) territory and teaching skills kept alive and shared by Native people around the globe who were under threat by many of our ancestors and continue to face threat by our current culture and actions, we know that we can never repay the debts we owe to you. Thank you for all you are doing to keep culture, ecosystems, and community thriving in these difficult times. Thank you for supporting our work in service of that same goal. There is no way to express our gratitude, and we are honored by your presence at our programs and your contributions to our school. Kci woliwoni.
These funds will be awarded to individuals who apply to participate in the Wildwood Path’s programs who offer significant diversifying and strengthening elements to our community.
If you have experienced marginalization in the environmental field or otherwise consider yourself to be fit for this fund, please reach out! Applicants or nominees can be awarded partial or full tuition breaks as well as stipends support them to attend programs, depending on availability of funds. We appreciate your trust and the hard work that you do by attending a program in a field that continues to be exclusive and marginalizing of so many valuable people, and we want to work together to improve these conditions in the world AND support your learning in the now. Thank you!
Royalties to Lineage Keepers
Many of the skills and practices that we employ at The Wildwood Path are not directly traceable to one teacher or school, or were appropriated with or without consent from other cultures. We are doing our best to research this, make amends, cease using skills or practices that were inappropriately taken and should not be shared, and to learn and teach from our own lineages and experience. In addition, we are investing in a relational world where generosity and acknowledgment flow, so we are honored to be able to offer a percentage of profits to the following initiatives and to support their fierce and generous ways of protecting and sharing teachings with us and many others:
The Wabanaki people via Nibezun
The Dagara people via Aviela
The Haudenosaunee people via the Akwesasne Freedom School
The Bolad’s Kitchen Library Fund
Yoruba Traditions via Kindred of Sangoma
Decolonizing The Work that Reconnects via Rachel Marco-Havens
Please inquire if you or someone you know might be a good fit, or if you would like to donate to any of these funds or programs. Thank you for your support for justice and strength in our changing world.