Office Hours: Mon-Fri 9am-3pm

Empowerment Retreat

June 9-11, 2023 at Camp White Pine near Haliburton

Open for Teen Girls 16+ and Women of all Ages

Empowerment Sessions and Workshops

This weekend is loaded with a variety of workshops designed to build confidence and bring out a braver, stronger new you! You will walk away with skills that will last you a lifetime.

4 Part Self Defense Training & Personal Protection Course

      – Verbal Skills (de-escalation)

     – Situational Awareness Training

      – Strikes & Escapes

      – Ground Work

      – Attacks

Confidence Building & Empowerment Workshops

– You are Enough – Keynote Speaker Presentation

– Be your own Hero (listening to your gut)

– The Art of Letting it Go (Board Breaking)

– High Ropes Course

Conflict Management & Resolution

– Taking Control of Stress before it takes Control of You

– 4 Steps to Resolving Conflict – From Prevention to Resolution

– Communication and Dealing with Difficult People

Strength & Wellness Workshops

 – Suspension Fitness Strength Training

– Pound Fitness Release

– Intuitive Eating & Healthy Nutrition

 – Befriend your Body (battling body image issues)

– Stretch & Mindful Meditation

Financial Wellness & Budgeting Workshops

– Money Management & Budgeting

– Building Credit, Borrowing & Investing

– Creating Financial Safety Nets

Counsellors will be on-site and available all weekend for anyone who may wish to talk to them. 

Registration Costs

We want this retreat to be as affordable as possible because we know so many teens and women will benefit from gaining this knowledge! 

Empowerment Retreat registration cost is $350 + HST (Adults Aged 20+)

Teens Aged 16-19 can attend for $225 +HST

(parental waiver must be signed for each teen under age 18 and groups of teens must be accompanied by 1 paying adult)

Here’s the breakdown and what’s Included:

*  2 nights shared accommodations in gorgeous, rustic cabins (think bunk beds, friends old and new)

* 6 delicious chef-prepared meals and a variety of snacks throughout the day. You definitely won’t go hungry!

* empowering workshops and sessions of your choosing on a variety of topics. All materials are included

* 4 levels of self-defense training and education, including a simulation attack and defense scenerio if you choose

* key-note speeches & evening entertainment from incredibly knowledgeable guests speakers

Meet your Instructors

Darren Vernon

Self Defense Training & Personal Protection Course Instructor

Darren graduated from the “Harvard of Bodyguard Schools”, Executive Security International, as a Certified Protection Specialist (CPS). Darren spent several years providing close protection for celebrities in the music industry, working as an executive protection driver for high profile attorneys traveling in the US, and providing protective services for female victims of criminal harassment. In addition to being a former bodyguard, he has extensive experience as a nightclub doorman (bouncer),
and as a uniformed security guard. 

Darren’s last professional teaching endeavour had him travelling to numerous high schools throughout Ontario, from Tillsonburg to Toronto, to Peterborough and many points in  between. As a Safe International Student Self Defense instructor, Darren has had the rare opportunity to impart life saving self-defense skills and knowledge to thousands of  students. Darren has been studying the fighting arts for over 30 years. His greatest passions in life include fitness, personal protection and teaching, and he has committed his life to teaching others how to be their own bodyguard. Darren believes and promotes the understanding that, everyone should have the skills necessary to protect them from violent encounters.

Cheryl Easton

Keynote Speaker – You Are Enough

From the time Cheryl began her dynamic real estate career in 2014, she credits her success to her unmatched dedication to her clients, as well as building her expansive referral network, with purpose and integrity.  Cheryl is well known for her insatiable passion, drive, and energy, which she focuses equally on her career, community service and her two grown children.  She appreciates a challenge and has a reputation for thinking outside of the box in order to bring otherwise difficult situations to favorable conclusions.  Following a life time of abuses, culminating in a vicious physical and sexual assault by her then partner in 2015, and the resulting physical, emotional and psychological recovery from it, in 2018 she added Motivational Speaking to her repertoire, and is now a requested speaker at events across Canada and the Eastern U.S., focusing on guiding her audiences to translate their personal and professional life experiences into victories.

Diane Wolf

Certified Counsellor on Site

 Communication Styles & Controlling Stress Workshops

Diane Wolf is a Registered Psychotherapist and Certified Clinical Trauma Professional whose specialty is helping people manage stress,  overwhelm, and PTSD. Before becoming a therapist, Diane taught in the Business Administration department at Trent University for many years, where her signature course was in Communication. Diane holds both an MBA in Learning and Knowledge Management, and a Master’s degree in Clinical Counselling.

Diane is a brain science nerd, who is passionate about teaching people how to manage stress and overwhelm long before they reach a crisis point. Diane also loves to teach people the secrets of how to communicate effectively with those people we just don’t ‘get’. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, speaking, hiking, swimming, and travelling. This past year she was the President of the Peterborough Women’s Business Network and is on the Board of Directors for the Chamber of Commerce.

Married for 44 years to her Austrian husband, Andreas, and the mother of three grown children, her very favourite thing to do is spend time with her grandchildren, who are the sunshine in her life.

Chantal McDougall 

Be Your Own Hero Workshop

From constantly doubting herself and never feeling good enough, Chantal overcame her own traumatic past and discovered the path to becoming the confident, compassionate, and enthusiastic young woman she is today. Her passion is leading others to experience that same transformation from feeling stuck to feeling limitless and overcoming people pleasing. Chantal holds an honour-roll degree in Psychology and is also a certified life coach. She has experience leading team meetings and trainings in different professional environments as well. Her education combined with her life experience have ideally equipped her to share the lessons she learned to help others achieve their goals and increase their confidence.

Christine Teixeira

Manage your Money with Confidence & Budgeting for Beginners Workshops

Christine Teixeira is the owner of Accountability Financial, where she provides bookkeeping and income tax preparation services for small businesses and individuals in Peterborough and the Kawartha region.  After a busy career as an environmental engineer, she made the decision to become an entrepreneur instead so she would have more control of her time and to be more available for her family.  Always passionate about finance as a hobby, she completed the Small Business Accounting Certificate in 2014 and launched Accountability Financial in 2015.  

Christine is Past President of the Women’s Business Network of Peterborough and is passionate about empowering women and helping them succeed. Christine has delivered numerous workshops to various groups on topics such as small business bookkeeping, HST, and income
tax. Christine is a wife and mother of two adorable girls. In her spare time, Christine enjoys knitting and riding on her Peloton bike.

Jen Vanclief

Pound Fit Pro & Suspension Fitness Instructor

After 30 years working as a full-time Reserve Force Senior Office with the Canadian Cadet Program, Jennifer retired and was looking for an exciting new experience when she joined the Rustic Mama Retreats team in 2019. Mother to 1, and Grandma to 2, Jennifer is passionate about fitness and the great outdoors. She is a certified Personal Training Specialist, Healthy Eating and Weight Loss Coach, Balance Habits Virtual Life Coach and has training in Active Aging, Think Yourself Confident, Strength Training for Weight Loss, Nordic Pole Walking and most recently became a certified Pound Fitness Pro Instructor. 

Kim Hagle

Intuitive Eating & Befriend Your Body Workshops

Kim Hagle is Certified Personal Trainer, Registered Holistic Nutritionist, Body Image Coach and founder of Radiant Vitality Wellness.  Kim hosts The Joyful Movement Show podcast, where she inspires women to disconnect movement from weight loss and re-engage with movement as a form of self care. Through her various movement and coaching programs, she helps women heal their relationship with food and exercise while disconnecting their worth from their weight, so they can feel great in AND about their body.  

Kim’s personal journey to self acceptance has led her to do this work.  Radiant Vitality was born as a result of Kim’s personal experiences and observations of how the fitness industry fails women by idealizing the thin body.  Kim believes that movement is an innate human need  and is passionate about helping women care for their physical, mental, emotional and spiritual body through movement that feels amazing.

Lindsey Abrams

Money Management Advisor – Building Credit, Borrowing & Investing Workshop

Lindsey Abrams was born and raised in Belleville, Ontario.  She has worked with RBC Group Advantage | Royal Bank of Canada for 23 years in various positions at the branch level as a Financial Advisor and Branch manager.  Lindsey is currently a Relationship Manager with RBC Group Advantage | Royal Bank of Canada.  In this position she focuses on business owners wanting to provide retirement benefits to their team.  She provides organizations with comprehensive ongoing Relationship Management and Advice, relating to their Group Retirement benefits program providing financial education and improving the financial literacy of employees – from savings and investments to everyday banking. This includes onsite and individually tailored advice to employers & their employees with expert advisors to promote Financial Wellness and guided retirement planning.  Lindsey enjoys offering assistance to individuals and groups to find their way to financial independence and security.  She is a mother to Tasha her adult daughter.  Lindsey spends her free time walking her dog Charlie, and participating in dance, outdoor fitness and Pound Fit classes.

Rebecca Normington

Student Counsellor on Site

Rebecca Normington is currently a second-year master’s student of counselling psychology at Yorkville University. She is a wife and mother to three young children, ages 7, 5 and 3. After years of volunteering in the mental health field, she knew that paths to purpose and self fulfillment can be complicated and challenging. Because of this, she decided to fulfill her urge to help alleviate human pain and suffering through education. Her future goal is to meet clients where they are at, and offer them non-judgmental listening, rooted in warmth, empathy, compassion, and respect. The strength of her relationships with future clients is vital to achieving meaningful, lasting change. Her goal is that each individual feels heard, supported, and respected throughout their therapeutic journey. Additionally, Rebecca has a special interest in working with individuals who have been affected by infertility, relationship issues, anxiety, chronic stress, depression, interpersonal struggles, life transitions and parenting. She believes that therapy is not a one-size fits all solution, so molding my approach to future clients
and providing a welcoming space to speak candidly is crucially important to her.

Fantastic Location

Camp White Pines Camp located just outside Haliburton, Ontario. Nestled on Hurricane Lake and divided into sections, this camp boasts spacious cabins and a plethora of program buildings. Private and Semi-Private rooms can be accommodated by request but they also have cabins that can accommodate groups up to 14 if you want to come with friends! Newly built washrooms and showers are located in a central washroom building just outside the cabin areas.

Mouth-Watering Food 

All of our locations have their very own chefs that will provide amazing, nutritious and delicious meals throughout the weekend with both healthy and indulgent options! Meals will include incredible homemade baked goods, vegetarian options and a delicious salad bar. 

Please be sure to inform us of any food allergies/intolerances or health issues you feel we should be aware of well before arriving at camp. Our incredible chef and his staff can satisfy all special dietary needs, as long as we know in advance. 

What To Pack 

A suggested packing list will be emailed out to all participants a few weeks before the event.

How To Get There

Camp White Pine is located in Haliburton, Ontario. It is roughly 3 hrs NE of Toronto , or 1 hr N of Peterborough in the beautiful Haliburton Highlands.

Click here for directions