Here are a few of the people that you will find as part of the Wildcraft Forest community.
Cindy Cameron –Wellness Program Director
Cindy is a health and wellness practitioner, advocate, researcher and award winning program development specialist with over 20 years’ experience bringing forth research and development efforts which realizes system wide, scalable solutions to human conditions.
Born and raised in the beautiful interior regions of super natural British Columbia, Cindy has been blessed with a deep and ongoing love affair with the elements and the life forms that grace these mountains and valleys. Carefully cultivating an ongoing wonderment for the seen and unseen world around her, she was naturally drawn to the writings and works of the Wildcraft Forest School and its participants.
Cindy’s goal as a Wildcrafter is to create opportunities for others to experience and benefit from the kinship and wisdom of the other sentient beings and elements that surround them. As the Wildcraft Forest Wellness Program Director she brings together world-class healers so that they may deliver programs in this magical forest. She also coordinates the Wildcraft Forest Mystery School.
Maria (Solay) Beveridge – Catalyst Coach
Solay is that person who keeps all the small things going so that the big things can happen at the Wildcraft Forest. To her, “small is beautiful” as she helps to seed the intentions from others by cultivating, nourishing, and nurturing new ideas which she calls “seed sparks”.
At the Wildcraft Forest, Solay is an onsite wellness practitioner and produces “Sparklighter Events”. She is often the person who will take your phone and email inquiries. Solay insures that plans and actions stay on track with regards to forest, farm and school operations. She helps to maintain day-to-day land-based and accommodation demands that include wildcrafting, the CSA farm and the wild plant nurseries.
Solay brings a diversity in skills, she has been a buffalo ranch hand; a crane operator and a log home builder, she has a background in psychology and currently has a massage and therapeutic touch practice in BC, Alberta and Saskatchewan. She lives with her four children at the Wildcraft Forest where she raises and homeschools them and shares with them what it means to live from the heart and with the Earth.
Stephan Morin – Mother Tree Botanicals Consultant
From the youngest age, Stephan has been fascinated by the intelligence at work in nature and the connectedness of all life. Memories of wandering in the woods as a child; of unforgettable sensory experiences, the scent of trees, soil and resins blending; of the countless hours of quietude, often reflecting on the wild beauty; all remain as alive and vibrant today as they were then.
A desire to understand the world, the relationship between humans and nature in particular, led to studies in philosophy and natural medicine, with a special inclination for classical Chinese medicine and Yangsheng practices learned along the way. Citing a passage from The Book of Songs (Shijing): “If you grasp the wisdom that is contained in the workings of the universe and expressed in the realm of philosophy, you will be able to safeguard your physical health.”
For the past 20 years Stephan has been working in the field of natural foods and medicines in various capacities - from global trade of raw materials, to consulting and disseminating information on natural medicinals to wider audiences, primarily through naturopathic and health retailer channels. One of his key contributions was to introduce Rhodiola rosea (Artic root), a botanical known and researched for its adaptogenic properties, to the Canadian market. When he discovered the Wildcraft Forest School he made a natural connection with the people and teachings, which brought a new dimension to his love for the land. As the Wildcraft Forest Mother Tree Botanicals Director, Stephan overseas research, education and special projects linked to the growing, harvesting and distribution of medicinal botanicals to health care professionals as well as directing the Mother Tree Certification and Dispensary Program.
Leila Bee – Wild Dynamic Forest and Farm Consultant
Leila Bee is a horticulturalist specializing in plants for food and medicine, Pacific Northwest native plants, ethnobotanicals and permaculture techniques. Growing up in the rainy mountains of the Fraser Valley, she continues a lifelong romance with the flora and fauna of the region with ongoing investigation and utilization of the bounty of the coastal rainforest and surrounding watersheds.
She has been an herbalist and wildcrafter for over a decade, and enjoys being outside knee deep in damp moss and smelling like cedar, photographing unusual mushrooms, gathering, and teaching others how to use wild plant products while being an ethical collector.
With twenty years + experience in the nursery trade she is familiar with all methods of commercial growing, from strictly hydroponic systems steeped in modern tech to certified organic farming and market gardening. Her passion is growing great food and medicine with the accent on connecting with others through teaching, sharing, outreach, meticulous research and continuous discovery.
Trent Schumann, B.Sc.
Corporate and Government Relations
Trent believes that better business makes for a better world – and he is tasked with creating opportunities for the Wildcraft Forest to bridge new ideas and solutions into company and government cultures. He is a sought-after facilitator, trainer, coach, and consultant. Since 1988 he has been helping organizations achieve transformative results by helping them capitalize on change, engage their stakeholders and unlock the untapped potential of their teams and leaders. His strength lies in his curious mind, broad interests and ability to quickly develop a holistic systems view of a situation. He helps organizations create innovative, non-obvious and elegant solutions and then build the momentum to make them happen. This is grounded by his deep experience with a wide variety of organizations in North/South America, Europe, Russia, SE Asia and the Middle East.
With a degree in Computer Science, Trent’s first assignment was with Shell’s business intelligence unit. He soon realized that he wanted to do more than the corporate path would allow, so he moved to a small, growing change management software company and became VP of Business Development. This allowed him to work closely with and advise Fortune 500 companies in North America and Europe. As a result of this work, Trent learned what enhanced and impeded the success of leaders and their teams and discovered that he had a unique ability to help them past their blocks to unlock their latent potential.
Using this knowledge, he formed Experienca and struck out on his own in 1992 to provide progressive organizations with consulting, coaching and experiential learning programs to help them make quantum leaps in team commitment, satisfaction, and productivity. Since then, he has had the honour to help countless leading organizations, brilliant leaders and dedicated stakeholders around the world. These range from Fortune 50 companies that define the global business environment to small non-governmental organizations that are doing their part to change the world.
Don Elzer – Founder of the Wildcraft Forest
and Yasei Shinrin Yoku Therapy
Don Elzer is the founder of the Wildcraft Forest School and has been a long time environmental activist and a pioneer in “regenerative stewardship”. He is also recognized as being a leader in explaining how “sentience” is found in nature and that our greatest challenge is to capture meaningful methods of making “First Contact” with species and ideas. Don Elzer is a Master Wildcrafter and Yasei Shinrin Yoku therapist; he is a field biosemiotician and a Rewilding Coach; a trained Biofield Therapist and practices different forms of Shamanic healing.
Don Elzer is also a community economic development specialist and is best known for his investigative research and ongoing work with rural communities, habitat protection, permaculture and First Nations. With over 20 years of field experience working with small and medium sized enterprises and communities he has acquired key knowledge about current development and stewardship issues impacting our changing planet. As a consultant with the Canadian Tourism Commission he developed one of the first eco-tourism strategies in British Columbia, as well as the first creative sector development strategy in the Okanagan Valley. His role has been assessing, problem-solving and identifying emerging opportunities and leadership methods within such scenarios as industry closures, First Nations self-government, eroding community infrastructure and impacts due to climate change, so that a more creative and diverse economy and culture can be realized and sustained based on regenerative stewardship.