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About Us

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Who We Are

The Guided Passages story

We have seen the power of connecting teens and young adults to themselves, to others, and to the Earth through intentional practice and mentorship. Guided Passages seeks to do just that through all of its offerings. Whether it be one-on-one Life Coaching, our Youth Connect Program, or our Wilderness trips, each program helps to remind participants of their own unique gifts, potential, and purpose, so that they can step fully into meaningful and authentic lives.

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Kerrick Gooden

Guide

Kerrick was raised in the Hill Country of Austin, Texas where he studied at the University of Texas. After some travel, he moved to the Rogue Valley of Oregon with a vision to farm and support youth. He completed his Bachelor’s of Science in Applied Cultural Anthropology with Honors in 2004 at Southern Oregon University, and devoted over a decade supporting youth and their families navigate  local and state social service programs. During this time, he and his partner cultivated a food forest at their home and founded Verdant Phoenix as an educational mini-farm in 2016.

Verdant Phoenix Farm became an expression of a way of life for Kerrick. He is interested in the relationships between humans, soil, microbes, plants/trees/shrubs, food, culture, time, and the web of life. As these elements inform his horticultural practice, Kerrick enjoys supporting landscapes, gardens, farms, and their people who are interested in belonging to the land.