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Washington State University Extension


 In Their Own Words…

“I felt…like the earth told me a secret that she was trying to hide.  I had waited patiently for her to tell me.  When she saw I was genuinely interested in what she had to say, she opened up to me like I was her best friend.  That feeling has persisted somewhat, it’s always with me in some degree, and it makes every day easier to get through.” C.S., Female age 18

“What stuck with me the most was how in just 10 days I felt like the people I had been there with I had known all my life.  I still think about everything about my experience almost everyday.  The thing that has really stayed with me was the feeling of me letting myself really go, and becoming the man I always knew inside I could be.” K.A., Male age 17

“I wish the truth of the Talking Stick would speak for me always. Now I can hear with new ears—listen outward and inward. Like other fasters I shall pack everything away with me when I leave. I feel so very grateful. It’s so hard to imagine my hometown as dull and dry now. Now there are lots of miracles everywhere.” Ben T., Librarian

“It is always my intent to take time to stop and assess my life’s path and goals, but in my busy life it just doesn’t happen. ROP is an experience that far exceeded the need to take stock of my life. This unique and mind opening experience has changed my life. A year after my ROP trip I am truly in a space that I have tried for a long time to get to. This experience has brought peace and purpose to my life in a way I never imagined and that I can’t really even explain now. ROP pushed me to my edge and I came back a more whole person, not a different person, but truer to my real self. I encourage people to take on the challenge, the personal growth you achieve is worth it.” Candace C., Youth Counselor

Hafiz says: “What is that glorious sound of loving and laughter? It is the sound of the soul waking up. Such a beautiful sound!” As quoted by Selina S., Therapist and Teacher

“I love this kind of  barrio!” Jose G., Minister

“It is difficult to describe The Rite of Passage journey with words. I can say that it has had a profound effect on me, which is always with me. It enabled me to connect with the unity that I find by dwelling in nature that can get lost in the human-made world. The memories of the lessons and relationships are deep, and I draw upon them each day.” Jackie C., Educator


Alex sitting group posing together

Karen sitting with back back