The Mountain Seed Foundation’s
Hub & Spoke Model
The Mountain Seed Foundation’s Hub & Spoke Model

As a team of families living abroad, we find ourselves breaking away from the conventional mold, therefore it’s only natural that MSF’s model is intentionally unconventional. Survivors of war are welcomed into our camps where they are exposed to physical and mental challenges that help them recognize their strengths, grow, and find hope. Our team provides access to mental health support in a nontraditional setting – the mountains – where our experienced psychologists enable families with a resiliency toolkit rooted in the principles of positive psychology and PERMA+. Our professional mountaineers guide participants into fearful situations with the certainty of safety, allowing for significant emotional growth in a short period of time.


“On the edge of discomfort is where you grow the most.” – unknown

OUR HUB - Healing Base Camp (located in Austria):

Here we employ the train-the-trainer model during an active camp in a central location – the “Hub,” also known as “Healing Base Camp.” This enables our core team to provide consultation and support to future mountain guides and therapists that go out to deploy key components of our program in “Spoke” locations, or as we affectionately call them, “Mini Base Camps” (but there’s nothing mini about them!).  

It is in the Hub that we extend a warm embrace to families who have faced the trials of war and survived. This week-long program not only challenges participants physically and mentally, but also complements these challenges with therapeutic sessions led by our experienced psychologists who nurture the development of effective coping strategies.

To learn more about why our Hub is in Kaprun, Austria, we invite you to read our blog post here. In a nutshell, it’s a place built by climbers for climbers of all levels.

OUR SPOKE - Mini Base Camps:

Our strategically positioned “Mini Base Camps,” our Spokes, are thoughtfully designed to extend our program to more families in need, with a special focus on those who are most vulnerable within Ukraine. Here we offer military families access to climbing in an indoor climbing gym. An onsite psychologist integrates key components of our larger program and facilitates meaningful connections among the parents while the children work with guides to challenge their limits and confront their fears.  

At the Mountain Seed Foundation, we recognize that therapy is not one-size-fits-all. We embrace a unique approach by integrating mountaineering and climbing into our therapeutic process. We encourage parents and children to embrace vulnerability as a path to personal growth and healing. Our programs are tailored to the skill levels of each child, providing them with opportunities to conquer challenges, enhance their courage, and strengthen their spirits. Simultaneously, we empower mothers to focus on their personal growth, understanding that a healthy family unit starts with parents in a sound mental state.

“We gain strength, courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

Program Goals

  • Improve mental health and well-being: Families of war are often exposed to traumatic experiences, which can lead to a variety of mental health problems, such as anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
  • Build resilience by teaching families how to cope with stress, manage emotions, and build a strong support network.
  • Promote social-emotional learning: Social-emotional learning is the process of developing the self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision-making skills needed to succeed in school, work, and life. We promote social-emotional learning by providing families with opportunities to develop and practice these skills.
  • Strengthen family relationships: War can have a significant impact on family relationships. We believe that families are strengthened through opportunities to communicate, connect, and support each other.
  • Reduce stigma around therapy by providing a low-pressure environment among others with shared experiences, in combination with an active challenge to place focus on the body rather than the mind.  
  • Promote hope and optimism: Families of war may experience feelings of hopelessness and despair. Our healing programs promote hope and optimism by showing families that they are not alone and that there is a better future ahead, together.

Program Offers

  • Group therapy sessions with a psychologist; guided “awe” walks in nature.  
  • Rock climbing instruction, with experienced guides and psychologists to endure challenges in a safe space.
  • Opportunity to build lasting social connections and a network of support.

Unlocking Hope, One family At A Time

Subscribe to our newsletter


Donate Today

Donate Today

Healing Base Camp: Planting Seeds Of Hope To Restore What War Has Stolen
As the fight inside Ukraine continues, many families continue to endure the physical and psychological burdens of war. The cost of this war will be realized for generations to come, but WE CAN HELP.