What is an EPP Guide?
EPP Guides are constantly growing, conscious individuals who have journeyed their own inner terrain with enough depth and skill to offer their wisdom, experience, and steady presence to others who are navigating their own journeys.
EPP remains unwavering in our vision to free people – all over the world – from the prisons of our own making. EPP was inspired by serving imprisoned people. We have since expanded our guide role to include virtual offerings for the public, in education, and organizations.
We are compassionate and especially sensitive to those who have been charged and convicted of crimes against society. Many of our students – inside and outside of actual prisons – have endured childhood trauma, emotional, sexual, and physical abuse, violence and addiction, often repetitively and over many generations. Because of this, we seek mature, confident, compassionate individuals with a sincere desire to bring forth their self-mastery in the classroom. Guides balance life and work, and are supported by regular inner practice and self-care.
At EPP we use the Enneagram system as a map of personality structures that helps us find our core self when we lose our way. We consider our teachers to be trustworthy guides. Knowing how to orient to this roadmap of personality allows us to navigate the complex inner terrain of ego, and remember where and who we actually are. Even a very good map is only as useful as our ability to stop and look at it, the knowledge to read it, and the presence of mind to recognize where we are to begin.
“EPP Guides are like having a trail leader on the journey with you who has been walking the path for years and is not only holding the map, but can provide to the group through the curriculum tools and their experience, a compass, and a satellite phone with GPS to assist the journey.”
–Dr. Heather Greenwald
Chief of Mental Health, RJ Donovan State Prison
What is the Guide Training Program (GTP)?
One of EPP’s core values is that “We do the work together.” The Guide Training Program is about developing and bringing out your particular skills and gifts, as well as finding and working the edges where you are still developing. We want to both support you, and be assured of your capacity to effectively and compassionately guide our students with a co-guide, while simultaneously staying present to yourself.
The necessary pause of programming in prisons and jails during the global pandemic gave us the opportunity to reimagine our Guide Training Program (GTP). In order to grow future EPP Guides in a way that is sustainable, affordable, and accessible, we have envisioned a training that will develop a diverse and highly skilled team of people who are steeped in the ongoing work of self development, and committed to the vision of Enneagram Prison Project – freeing people all over the world from the prisons of our own making.
We believe that some of the best guides of the Enneagram system may very well be those who have yet-to-have-access to this tool. We have intentionally removed as many barriers to participating in our training program as possible, and continue to take steps to create a safe and inclusive space where everyone is invited to step in knowing that they belong.
EPP lives from our core values of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Access, and Belonging. Our new Guide Training Program invites people from all over the world to bring their unique life experience, skills and talents to support EPP’s mission and vision. We are normalizing diversity and intentionally creating spaces where people are invited to grow in their own self-understanding and to operate outside the binary. One way we do this is by removing all known and perceived barriers to promote stepping into the EPP Community with a deep sense of knowing that you have always belonged here.
We cannot overstate the importance of growing and being in community when it comes to this work. EPP Guides are part of an ever-growing community of like-hearted people who strive to live into our core values both in and out of the EPP classroom. We meet weekly to “do the work together,” processing and bearing witness to what is alive in the students we are guiding by practicing staying present to ourselves.
See calendar on this page.
Our vision is to free people – all over the world – from the prisons of our own making. EPP is a nonprofit organization committed to our mission and providing the financial resources required to fulfill it. Inspired by this, our shared values, and a deep commitment to creating access to diverse, equitable, and inclusive spaces, our resolve is to make this course available to all. Equal to this is our goal of inviting each recipient of the course to determine their individual contribution with our ultimate goal of reaching 100 percent participation.
In 2020, we chose to offer 9P1K using a voluntary donation-based tuition model that is paid at the end of the course. The application invites participants to share self-identifying information to support EPP in building psychologically safe and affirming spaces for people from all backgrounds to unfold together on their own self-discovery journeys. The donation-based tuition model is designed to remove financial barriers to participation, and allow each person to invest in the course by giving an amount that reflects the value they received, and is aligned with the integrity of their financial means.
At the completion of each course of the GTP training, participants are invited to financially invest in the course, selecting an amount that reflects the value they received from it, with integrity and respect to their financial means. We are piloting this series for the first time and cost is dependent on participation. We estimate that a donation of $5,000 will support the cost of one participant for each one of our GTP courses and both virtual and in-custody apprenticeships