Our Programs

To fulfill our mission we offer a wide variety of programs for all phases of life – from mindfulness-based childbirth and parenting to mindfulness programs for seniors.

Mindful Awareness Program

• Mindful Awareness Program
• Clear Mind Caring Heart

Compassionate LEaders Program

• Compassionate Leaders Program

Flourish U

• Cultivating Emotional Balance
• Mindful Parenting
• Mindfulness-Based Childbirth & Parenting
• Understanding the Art and Science of End of Life

 

Learn more about our programs below
 

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Mindful Awareness
Program

Promoting Life Skills

 

The major emphasis of the K-5 educational programs is cultivating a holistic world-view and a non-injurious way of life.    Within this context the word “world-view” refers to how we see the world and understand our place within it.   

The major themes that are developed in support of a holistic world-view are interdependence, or shifting from “me” to “we” thinking, the happiness of being, which is the fulfillment we experience from our way of being in the world and not what we get from the world, and personal empowerment, or the recognition that we all matter and what we think, say and do impacts the world around us.  

The theme of interdependence is a potent antidote to the social injustice and environmental degradation that is perpetuated by self-centeredness and narcissism.  The exploration of the happiness of being provides an important balance to the societal pressure of unrestrained consumerism and the fixation of looking for wellbeing in what we get from the world in terms of wealth, prestige and power. The recognition of personal empowerment protects us from hopelessness and despair and imparts a sense of personal efficacy and self-mastery.   

To nurture a non-injurious way of life students explore a number of games and exercises that promote self-awareness of their body, speech and mind. With heightened self-awareness students learn to recognize destructive impulses and consider alternative responses.  Along with self-awareness students cultivate empathy and kindness and invigorate the inclination for altruism.

In addition to the cultivation of a holistic world-view and a non-injurious way of life, Flourish programming at the elementary level introduces a language of emotion and basic elements of meditation that support self-soothing, focused attention, and gratitude.

 

 

 

 

84% of students report using the skills and tools taught in Flourish educational programs on a daily basis

When students were asked why they  use these skills they responded:

• To manage stress and become calm

• Find peace

• When I'm angry, sad or afraid

• To strengthen kindness and build positive relationships

• To build focus and support academic success

Filmed over the course of a year, we highlight the core concepts of the Mindful Awareness Program through class excerpts, and interviews with students from Jennica Alexander's 5th grade class at Hailey Elementary.

 
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Clear Mind Caring Heart

Exploring Human Experience

 

"This program means a lot to me because it helped me get rid of my depression.  Thank you for that!" ~7th grade student

Adolescents growing up in the 21st century are faced with an unprecedented amount of global challenges involving environmental degradation, social injustice, economic distress, and political corruption. These challenges are further compounded by school, extracurricular, and social pressures that have created a society of stressed out teens, who are now susceptible to a wide array of mental disorders that hinder their human capacity to learn, thrive, and constructively engage with the world. It is now estimated by the National Institute of Mental Health that 20% of 13-18 year olds either currently or in the past have experienced a severe debilitating mental disorder. Unfortunately in an attempt to cope, young people often turn to drugs, alcohol, violence, and other destructive behaviors that exacerbate the experience of distress and dissatisfaction.

To address these issues and to promote a nurturing environment for learning, the Clear Mind and Caring Heart program aims to support students in an in-depth exploration of ethics and values, emotional awareness and meditation.  This exploration is guided by games, respectful dialogue, group activities, dyadic work, contemplative practice and the principles of subjective ecology.

Through this immersion students are encouraged to discover for themselves what qualities of the heart/mind are beneficial or antithetical to their own and others well-being.  In addition students can realize the world is not simply happening to them and have a choice for how they show up.  

Ultimately, through fostering positive relationships and deliberately cultivating the heart/mind, students are inspired to transform the world from the inside out through human values such as kindness, compassion, empathetic joy and impartial care. 

 

 

Compassionate Leaders Program

Engaging From the Inside Out

We believe that compassion and leadership can be nurtured at the deepest level when cultivated inwardly through contemplative practices and outwardly through community service, fundraising, and public advocacy. When these conditions come together they create an optimal environment for individual and collective flourishing. 

Compassionate Leaders engage in weekly meetings that impart skills in focused attention, empathy, kindness, and compassion, through discussions on ethics values, meditation practice and activities that strengthen emotional awareness. The Compassionate Leaders read several books throughout the year, including Beyond Religion: Ethics for a Whole World, by the Dalai Lama, Happiness by Matthieu Ricard, and a selection of articles that critically examine the impact and complications of “voluntourism.”

At the end of the school year, students engage in international “learning service trips” to collaborate with other communities. So far, we have worked with communities in India, Mexico, Mississippi, Morocco and the Philippines. On these trips students implement projects that promote sustainability, education, and well-being. These trips are funded through a collaborative effort.

Apply to the Compassionate Leaders Program

The Compassionate Leaders Program runs from October – June

If you have questions, please contact Noah Koski:
Compassionate Leader Program Coordinator
noah@flourishfoundation.org
208-720-1138


Enjoy a Visual Journal of our Compassionate Leaders trip to India in 2018.

Compassionate Leaders taught me how to be a responsible, active, and compassionate global citizen. It gave me humility, balance, and awareness of each person’s shared humanity. I am filled with gratitude that I am able to take these attributes and lessons out into the world, and inspire change among a global community.
— Darby David CLP '15
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While this program did not open my eyes to something I had not seen before, it allowed me to remove the sunglasses I had been wearing. Life did not change, but my perception of it did. By removing my shaded sun glasses, I could see the sun. Through the contemplative practices, community service work, and discussions we had at our Compassionate Leaders meetings, I began to see the connection between every living and non-living being in the world. There is a unity between everything in life. As a Compassionate Leader, I witnessed with my own eyes the similarities between children in the Wood River Valley, New Delhi, and Mexico. I learned that we share the same needs for love, care, growth, and community. We are all human; we all have strengths and weaknesses, and we are on this adventure together.
— Lena Roebuck, Alumni
 
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Cultivating Emotional Balance
Mindful Parenting
Mindfulness-Based Childbirth & Parenting
Understanding the Art and Science of End of Life

Rigorous scientific research by Neuroscientists and Geneticists have shown that the structure and function of our minds and bodies change in relationship to the quality of our lived experience.  These scientific insights parallel discoveries made by the world’s contemplative traditions that demonstrate the possibility of extraordinary human development throughout the course of our lives. The cultural myth, so prevalent in modern society, that there is little or no opportunity for us to grow as adults in positive ways, that we are “stuck,” or “hardwired” is simply not true. Profound positive change is possible at any age and there are well examined practices, both new and ancient, that aid us in this transformation.

With a deep reverence for our capacity to thrive and flourish throughout our lives Flourish U offers an educational platform focused on life long learning opportunities designed to cultivate inner resources that nurture individual, collective and environmental well-being and invigorate our passion as adults to be relentless in our resolve for personal growth.


Cultivating Emotional Balance

Restoring Meaning & Purpose

Cultivating Emotional Balance is an adult training which arose from a dialogue between biobehavioral scientists studying emotion and the Dalai Lama, Buddhist monks, and scholars at the Mind and Life Institute in Dharamsala, India in March of 2000. This meeting was one in a series sponsored by the Mind and Life Institute to foster an interchange between Contemplative traditions and Western science.

At this meeting, the Dalai Lama asked scientists if they could conduct research to determine whether or not secularized Buddhist practices would be helpful to Westerners dealing with “destructive” emotional experiences. In response to this request, Dr. Paul Ekman and Dr. B. Alan Wallace, developed a 42 hour evidence based training program that integrates contemplative practices with Western techniques for dealing with negative emotional experiences.

The goal of the CEB training program is to impart skills for reducing emotional responses that are destructive to self and others, while enhancing positive mental states of serenity, kindness, compassion, altruism and pro-social behavior.

I think it is the most beneficial class/material I have ever taken. This is so important for the welfare of all beings.
— CEB Participant, 2014
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Mindful Parenting

Fostering Caring Relationships

Becoming a parent is perhaps one of life’s greatest responsibilities. The Childbirth Preparation and Parenting programs are designed to support parents in creating essential life skills that can assist them as they embark on one of life’s most significant, joyous, and challenging journeys — giving birth to and nurturing the next generation. Through contemplative practices, participants will be supported during pregnancy, childbirth and beyond.

Mindful Parenting is designed to engage parents in formal Mindfulness practices, meaningful parenting topics and lively group discussions. In this 6 week course parents are provided tools and resources for developing positive relationships with their children through a relaxed, stable and clear way of being.

Mindfulness-Based Childbirth Classes

Inspiring Conscious Birthing & Living

Through the practice of mindfulness, expectant parents will develop tools for managing emotional and physical stress during pregnancy, childbirth, parenting, and daily life.

Participants will learn how to engage the mind to deal with pain and fear associated with childbirth and how to access deep physical and mental relaxation to greatly assist the natural process of childbirth and ease the way into parenthood. By practicing mindful awareness, expecting parents are able to adjust through this transition with greater confidence, wisdom and joy.


 

Understanding the Art and Science of End of Life

Embracing Life and Death

Given we all face the certainty of death in our lives, it is surprising how little attention is paid to this reality. This course offers us an opportunity to thoughtfully and heartfully explore death in relationship to ourselves and others by increasing our everyday understanding of end of life and exploring the art of developing ease, presence, empathy, and openness.

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