Guiding Principles

As a non-profit organization, as fellow team members and as individuals, we are committed to deepening our embodiment of the principles and practices of the Roots to Thrive program. Like program participants, team members review, refine and re-affirm our commitment to collective Intentions and Agreements each cohort; we also use “check-ins,” “pause practices” and “compassionate witnessing” during our meetings, and engage in relational processes that support mutual healing, learning, and integrity.The core principles that have been guiding the development of the Roots program are:


Trauma-informed practice:

  • Upholding safety, trustworthiness, choice, collaboration and empowerment
  • Responding to: the commonness of multiple forms of trauma (e.g. intergenerational, racial, cumulative) in people’s lives; the far-reaching impact of trauma on whole-person health; the relational nature of trauma; and the many ways people survive and cope with trauma


Anti-racism, anti-oppression, and cultural humility for cultural safety

  • Deepening awareness of personal and systemic biases, discrimination and power dynamics, and resulting inequities, injustices and harms, and working to transform these
  • Engaging with humility as respectful and curious partners in care, rather than as figures of higher knowledge and authority; supporting self-determination, identity and strengths
  • Upholding cultural ways of knowing and being, including connection with land and language, and the role of Elders, Knowledge Keepers and Medicine People
  • Responding to the impacts of racism, oppression, colonialism and genocide on health and wellbeing


Health promotion and harm reduction 

  • Collaboratively addressing root causes of illness, including ways of coping that can lead to illness or harm
  • Reducing stigma, shame, and harms related to coping behaviours, and promoting acceptance and compassion
  • Sharing information that supports informed choices about health, health services and medicines/substances


Spiritual health and holistic approach 

  • Recognizing the inherent wholeness and sacredness of all people, including their interconnectedness with circles of family, community, nations, land and all her inhabitants
  • Focusing on wellness rather than illness, and supporting our innate capacities for healing in body, mind, heart and spirit
  • Integrating interdisciplinary approaches to care, and including clients’ own support people as desired
  • Respecting and including clients’ spiritual, cultural and community practices



  • Recognizing inequities related to systemic oppression and discrimination (e.g. based on race/ethnicity, gender expression, sexual orientation, religion, age, ability), and planning for scholarship funding to support participants with the greatest need
  • Seeking to develop community partnerships, to consult and collaborate on program development in alignment with our guiding principles
  • Growing team diversity and capacity to meet communities’ needs
  • Engaging in reciprocity with Indigenous Peoples, recognizing that psychedelic medicine assisted therapies have and continue to learn much from traditional healthcare and ceremonial practices with plant medicines, and rely on the protection of natural plant medicine habitats, stewarded by communities