Season Goodpasture

Mom and daughter who receive services with acorns

Breaking Barriers For Tribal Communities


Season Goodpasture is the founder and CEO of Acorns to Oak Trees, a service provider of the San Diego Regional Center (SDRC). She launched her non-profit in 2022 to increase awareness in tribal communities about intellectual and developmental disabilities and to cultivate relationships between regional centers and Tribal families.


Through her journey in understanding the regional center system for her daughter, Harley, Season saw a need to help other Native American families navigate the regional center and school district systems to ensure their loved ones have access to resources and quality services.


Season’s organization started by providing occupational and speech therapy. Their speech and language therapist (SLP) is bilingual in Spanish and English which has helped to fill a need in their region. On and near the reservation are many Hispanic families who have appreciated having a bilingual SLP.


Today, Acorns to Oak Trees has expanded with a Native American Community Navigator Program, a Tribal Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program (Tribal MIECHV), and more recently, an Infant Education Program. They are the first Tribal organization in California and the United States to be vendored by a regional center to provide infant education services. “We are very proud, but also very grateful to SDRC for helping us reach this monumental milestone,” Season shared with GB Magazine.


Her organization was awarded two home-visiting grants through the MIECHV Program to develop a home-visiting program for Pala, Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabel, Ione Band of Miwok Indians, and Wilton Rancheria. The goals of the programs are to support healthy, happy, successful American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) children and families through coordinated, high-quality, culturally tailored, evidence-based strategies.



The infant and toddler development program is designed for young children 0-36 months of age with a known or suspected developmental delay in one or more of the five areas of development: fine motor, gross motor, adaptive skills, speech and language, cognition, and social-emotional skills. Sessions have a strong emphasis on family support and training, and a child’s development of their imitation skills, sustained and joint attention, and play skills.



A unique quality that sets Acorns to Oak Trees apart is that many of the staff have a social work or mental health background which has been incredibly helpful in working with some of the Tribal Social Services programs and Native families where the child is placed outside of the home or other complex issues exist.


The team can easily empathize with the families and add another layer of support beyond just the vendored service. “Thanks to our Native American Community Navigator Program combined with our ACF Tribal MIECHV grants and newly awarded SAMHSA Circles of Care grant, we can take a holistic approach to working with the child and their entire family which is really what leads to better outcomes for the child, family, and community as a whole,” added Season.


Acorns to Oak Trees offers many forms of sensory integration options which provides a rich eco-therapeutic opportunity for the child to integrate therapy with nature aligning with native customs and traditions. “It is just good medicine for anybody,” says Season.


To learn more about Acorns to Oak Trees, visit

For information about the San Diego Regional Center, visit


author avatar
Esteban Villanueva