Raven's Roots is a non-profit school located in NW Washington that teaches children and adults naturalist and self-reliance skills. We offer both long and short courses in the areas of permaculture, wildlife tracking and behavior, plant identification, wild foraging, natural medicine making, wilderness survival, primitive skills (bow making, flint knapping etc.) and practically any skill related to self reliance and homesteading.
We were founded in 2015 and served a total of 15 students in our first year. Since then we've grown exponentially year-over-year, with our 2019 enrollment surpassing 150 students. While interest in our class offerings continues to grow, we have reached our capacity with our existing resources and are seeking outside help to enable us to meet this growing demand.
Our current situation is as such: For the past five years we've been leasing our current seven-acre campus in Sedro-Woolley. Today, the space is not large enough to handle additional students. The maximum capacity of our school classroom is 12-15 students and is only a year or two away from needing substantial repairs. The campus parking lot itself can only handle approximately 12 total cars at one time. Additionally, the property is set on a north facing slope and lacks sufficient sun exposure for close to 5 months of the year, Not only does this make teaching on the property incredibly difficult during the winter months, particularly January and February resulting in many class cancellations, but creates a significant barrier to growing the abundance of plants needed to support the school and course offerings.
In late 2019, Raven's Roots became a non-profit organization in order to raise funds to relocate the school to a site where it can thrive and make the largest impact possible. Our vision moving forward is to expand our course offerings and become a full-time school for adults and host camps and extended classes for children. The school would host classes six days a week and accommodate a broader variety of work schedules. Additionally, our core curriculum would expand into sustainable energy and natural building and go deeper into the subject areas that we currently teach. For the first time, we would also be able to offer full scholarships to those who can’t afford to attend classes today.
What we are seeking is site with at least 15 acres to accommodate the projected traffic that we are anticipating. Through our research, we have found properties of this size in Skagit and Whatcom counties to start at $500,000 and run up to $650,000. While this expansion is being primarily funded by Raven's Roots instructors, we are seeking an $150,000 to aid in acquiring the land as well as support the materials and costs associated with building the infrastructure for the school.
Raven's Roots is supported by a staff who possess over 14 years experience running full time programs. With the proper funding, we expect the expanded Raven's Roots to be fully operational by the start of our third year at the new site. All we need is some financial assistance from the people and organizations that believe in our mission. Even a small donation will go a long way for us.