Institute International Study

Each year as we embark on a week of deep personal insight, group study/reflection centered upon birth, breath, and death, service, and remarkable exploration.

Join us!

June 1-10, 2024


Through the heartfelt collaboration of Be Humanitarian, the Fundación Elisabeth Kübler-Ross México Centro, and the Institute for the Study of Birth, Breath, and Death, the annual Institute International Study Trips came into being.

Our annual trips, held the first 10-days every June, are facilitated by Tobie Spears, Wilka Roig, and Amy Wright Glenn ~ all founding directors of the organizations listed above.

Tobie, Wilka, and Amy facilitate and nurture a one-of-a-kind learning and retreat experience wherein participants deepen their understanding and meaning of birth, breath, and death both personally and professionally.

Participants also directly engage with the unique cultural expressions found in each country around topics such as maternity/midwifery care, full spectrum doula care, birth rituals, death rituals, and the understanding of life’s sacred thresholds.



Participants will engage in self-care practice, group study, service work, and meaningful interactions with local birth and death workers in Jamaica.

Participants will have the opportunity to honor and deepen their awareness of birth and death practices within the context of contemporary Jamaican life through classes, personal journal writing, meditation, yoga, Qigong practice, and group discussion. Participants will have the opportunity to meet via Zoom prior to the trip for a group study of Jamaican culture and history.

Mornings in Jamaica will begin with meditation, Qigong and/or yoga practice. Evenings are dedicated to the independent and group study and significance of birth and death practices in Jamaica.

Day excursions to cultural sites, local markets, and natural wonders are central to our 10-day adventure. Participants will also engage with social justice work supporting the educational and nutritional initiatives.

Register today!

Early Bird July Pricing: November ($3499)
Holiday Pricing:  December- January ($3999)

Full Price: February – March ($4599)
Last Minute Pricing: April ($4999)

All Participants Must be Paid in Full by May 1, 2024
Private Room extra charge – $500

Tuition covers lodging, food, and the Birth, Breath, and Death curriculum/program. Airfare not included.



I am not the same, having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world.
~Mary Anne Radmacher



Be Humanitarian has been working to improve the lives of Guatemalans in need for the last 10 years. We have a thriving community with our own preschool, nutrition program and sewing center in a remote area of Guatemala. At Be Humanitarian we believe our duty is to improve the lives of those in need. This eye-opening experience was created to offer volunteers a hands-on experience exploring Guatemala and learning about life. While in Guatemala volunteers will be provided the tools to know exactly how to make a difference in the lives of others so that volunteers feel fulfilled and connected to the world around them. Our service vacations combine service learning and leadership, allowing volunteers to learn about global development issues, such as poverty or public health, as well as solutions being put forth within the communities we support.



Fundación Elisabeth Kübler-Ross México Centro

EKR Foundation México Centro currently spans four states of central México—Guanajuato, Querétaro, Michoacán and Mexico City—and is dedicated to creating platforms for didactic discussion and facilitating healthy relationships with loss, grief, aging, illness, dying, end-of-life care, death, and beyond. We stand for compassionate care for the grieving, the dying, and those who love them, fostering awareness of the power of unconditional love as the essential element of good living and good dying. Inspired by EKR’s work and teachings, we aim to actively contribute to the evolution our death culture and bring dignity and humanity back to our loss, grief, dying, and end-of-life processes.




Tobie Spears  holds a BA in Sociology and Political Science from the University of Utah and has completed a Certificate in Criminology from the University of Utah. Tobie is the Founder of the nonprofit Be Humanitarian where she leads humanitarian-minded expeditions to explore Guatemala while paying it forward. Since 2007, Tobie has been working as a birth and postpartum doula where she has volunteered with the Utah Doula Association as President, Vice-President, Mentoring Chair, and Retreat Chair in service to birth and postpartum doulas across the state of Utah. Tobie has assisted families through the excitement of birth, the sorrow of loss, and has a particular focus/expertise in supporting people through postpartum depression, anxiety, and psychosis. Tobie is honored to be able to offer private consultations for individuals as they travel through life’s journey as a Holding Space Consultant for The Institute. Learn more.




Wilka Roig, MTP, MFA, PLC is a transpersonal psychologist, death doula, grief counselor, dream worker, educator, ordained minister, facilitator, writer, Taoist Arts instructor, musician, photographer, performance artist, silversmith, baker, mythmaker. She is president of Fundación Elisabeth Kübler-Ross (EKR) México Centro, deputy director of education of EKR Foundation Global, end-of-life doula instructor and BIPOC and International Advisor for the International End of Life Doula Association (INELDA). Wilka is curriculum coordinator and faculty for the Institute International Studies with the Institute for the Study of Birth, Breath, and Death. Her interests include neurobiology of trauma, loss, grief, and relationships, conscious living & dying, birds, stars, confectionery arts, and wine culture.