Momenta has been leading by and teaching to the same five values since 2006. This year, with the help of Housefires Design & Illustration, our entire staff and student team spent an hour doodling and drawing images of what we thought the values looked like…not long after that, we were sent over the most wonderful representations of our values with our team’s spirits tied right in.
We are so proud to be a part of this incredible team that has embraced these values in everything they do at Momenta. The values have brought us together, grounded us and allowed for us to have a way to communicate with one another and all of our participants in an authentic and meaningful way.
We’re hitting it off with our first value of #havefun which for us means that….
- we are engaging
- we are adventurous
- we are passionate
Our local, small, 100% female owned business is value-driven. This value may seem really simple, it is a really important value to keep at the forefront of everything we do. Having fun is important, play is important, laughter is important, and we appreciate every staff, student, infant, child, adult and Elder who has joined in on some fun over the past years with us.
Take care of each other
Our second value image reveal….#takecareofeachother which for us means that…
- we are approachable
- we are mentors
- we are community
Where do we even begin with this value…we could tell you countless stories of feeling taken care of, or taking care of others while working at Momenta. Our goal with this value is for staff to role model caring professional relationships and for the participants to feel taken care of and to do their best to practice caring relationships, maybe for the first time. When our team is together, it often feels like we are a family and we witness community care, where individuals are aware and are caring for the collective, often without being asked. Taking care of each other also means being allies for each other and our participants and creating space for everyone.
“community care is focused on the collective: taking care of people together, for everything from basic physical needs to psychological and even spiritual ones. Community care is a recognition of the undeniable cooperative and social nature of human beings and involves a commitment to reduce harm simply through being together.” (Valerio, N., 2019)
Our third value is to #berespectful which for us means that…
- we are inclusive
- we lead with humility
- we are strengths-focused
This is a huge value and encompasses many things, acknowledging first that it is one of the Seven Grandfather Teachings which reminds us that we have been taught through reciprocal relationships to respect each other and the land.
Momenta exists because we challenge some of the master narratives [story lines] that we have encountered in society as part of the outdoor adventure industry:
- “the outdoor adventure industry does not adequately acknowledge [and protect] ancestral lands”
- “the outdoor adventure industry is led primarily by white males”
- “the outdoor adventure industry is high performance, competitive and requires expensive gear”
As part of our work in the outdoor industry as guides, adventure therapists and outdoor educators, we have witnessed and experienced a need for an increase in respect within this field. We notice that what is often missing is inclusion, diversity, feminism, safe spaces, climate action, land defence, accessibility, truth & reconciliation, living wages and social justice. We are trying really hard to do this work at Momenta, to create respectful programs and a workplace that allows for the outdoor industry to look and feel different, for participants to engage with the land through adventure activities in a way that feels right.
Our fourth value is to #joinin which for us means that…
- we are purposeful
- we are authentic
- we are accountable
Our fourth value is our only value that has had some language shifts over the years. This value encompasses commitment and participation, which is now named #joinin. What does this really mean? For us this means that we create space where all people can authentically join in to conversations, therapy, activities, games, camps and outdoor sports.
This expectation is two-fold because we ask that staff and participants #joinin to what we are doing, but it also means that we have to create opportunities where people feel like they CAN join in.
This means that we have to be open to different ways that people join in. This means that we have to listen when someone feels like they can’t join in.
This means that we have a responsibility to be accountable to our staff and participants so that joining in feels good.
This means that sometimes it’s really difficult to join in, and that’s ok.
This means that joining in, is a choice.
This means that joining in will look, sound, feel, be different for each individual we are with.
This means that we will continuously celebrate every level of joining in that we witness as authentically as possible.
Our fifth value is to #besafe which for us means that…
- we are professional
- we are guided by best practice
- we have good judgment
To truly offer safe, professional programming, and for participants to authentically feel safe, a leader has a lot to think about for their own and the participants’ physical, emotional and spiritual safety. We have and will continue to meet and/or exceed best practice standards for adventure therapy and outdoor education.
Risk management, creating safer spaces, getting certified or trained in wilderness first aid, CPR, non-violent crisis intervention, trauma-informed practice, canoeing, kayaking, cycling, lifeguarding, etc…it’s serious business and we are committed to it.
Over the years, we created a series of hashtags that promote some of our #besafe policies, we are sharing them here today in hopes that you use them in future posts you are making while you are safely wearing your helmets, PFD’s and snow pants.
#besafe on the land and with your friends.