2014 Permaculture Design Certificate – Earth Activist Training

2014 Permaculture Design Certificate – Earth Activist Training

Posted on: May 16, 2014
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Date(s) - 16/05/2014 - 01/06/2014
All Day


Combining O.U.R. Permaculture Design Certificate with Earth Activist Training!

(Value added PDC..)

– Arrival Time: Friday, May 16 for dinner at 6:00 PM
– Departure Time: by 3:00 PM June 1st
– Evening Sessions: Are part of the program

Taught by: Starhawk and Charles Williams.. and many other fantastic guest teachers!


O,U.R. Ecovillage is proud to host this two-week permaculture design certificate course with a focus on organizing and activism, and a grounding in earth based spirituality. Learn how to heal soil and cleanse water, how to design human systems that mimic natural systems, using a minimum of energy and resources and creating real abundance and social justice. Explore the strategies and organizing tools we need to make our visions real, and the daily practice, magic and rituals that can sustain our spirits. Participatory, hands-on teaching with lots of ritual, games, projects, songs, and laughs along with an intensive curriculum in ecological design. ( Find out more about the EAT.) Current class schedules (New Window).

About Starhawk:

Starhawk is an author, activist, permaculture designer, and one of the foremost voices in earth-based spirituality. Her twelve books include The Spiral Dance, The Fifth Sacred Thing, and The Earth Path, and her first picture book for children, The Last Wild Witch. She has lived and worked collectively for thirty years, and her book on group dynamics, The Empowerment Manual: A Guide for Collaborative Groups, is now out from New Society. She directs and teaches Earth Activist Trainings which combine a permaculture design certificate course with a grounding in spirit and a focus on organizing and activism. More about Starhawk.

About Charles Williams:

Charles is a wandering spirit who has come to this work by daring to follow his heart and listen to the yearning of his soul. With faith and curiosity he has spent the past 13 years roaming North America, with a brief foray to the Middle East (Palestine/Israel/Jordan). Charles is most at home and alive in the wilderness, though his dedication to creating a better world often draws him out to march in the streets or work in community. Most biographies focus on what the person has done as an indicator of who they are. In that realm, Charles has a long list of “dones.” learn more about Charles here.


About O.U.R. Permaculture Design Certificate:

72 hour PDC over 16 days & evenings packed with learning from various instructors who are specialists in their field.

“What permaculturists are doing is the most important activity that any group is doing on the planet. We don’t know what details of a truly sustainable future are going to be like, but we need options, we need people experimenting in all kinds of ways and permaculturists are one of the critical gangs that are doing that.” – David Suzuki, International Environmental Advocate

Course Description and Content:

The Permaculture Design Course is an information packed 72-hour intensive course combining theory with practical hands on learning. Completion of the course earns participants a Permaculture Design Certificate – the foundation for further permaculture work and study and a prerequisite for the Diploma in Permaculture Design, offered through The Permaculture Institute in Australia.. Participants will learn Permaculture design principles & techniques. The course includes lectures, discussions, hands-on, slide shows, field trips and design projects. We will examine the underlying assumptions of the current culture of consumerism and economic globalization, and encourage exploration of ways to contribute to the emergence of a culture of sustainability, compassion and equity. The Permaculture Design Certificate course covers a broad range of subjects to provide a holistic overview of Permaculture systems and sustainable living. Some of the topics / themes to be covered:

– Evidence for change & the ethics of sustainability
– Principles of Permaculture
– Observation & landscape analysis
– Ecological planning & design methods
– Organic food production and food security
– Climatic factors in design
– Soils: Natural soil improvement
– Integrated animal systems
– Water: harvesting, conservation,and management
– Agroforestry & forest gardening
– Appropriate technologies & renewable energy systems
– Mapping & design exercises
– Techniques and design strategies for both urban & rural applications
– Ecovillages & sustainable human settlements

What is the Permaculture Design Certificate?

“Permaculture” is a copyrighted word. Only upon satisfactory completion of this course is an internationally recognized “Certificate of Permaculture Design” issued. Graduates are then eligible to use Permaculture in the promotion of designs, teaching and landscaping. Following at least two years of applied work, you are eligible to apply for a Diploma of Permaculture Design through the International Permaculture Institute.

Students who complete this course will be able to assess human landscapes and dwellings and then provide design solutions towards living sustainably. With practice and mentorship students will develop design skills that may lead to a meaningful livelihood. All students who complete this certification course leave with a much deeper understanding of their impact on the planet and each other, and with the critical thinking skills to lessen or improve that impact.
Participants from over 60 countries in all regions of the world and from all walks of life have called the Permaculture Design Course “ life-changing , transformative, and enormously affirming”. In the lively company of a diverse group of engaged and motivated women and men with a common interest in the future of humanity, learning is rapid, multidimensional, and long lasting.

Where can I go after this course?

– Embarked on new farming practices
– Found ways of dramatically reducing energy consumption
– Begun land-based ventures & small businesses such as: Nurseries, landscape design consultancies, etc.
– Realized goals towards self-sufficiency

City dwellers have found that even with little or no land, Permaculture shows them how to work with their home to produce food, reduce energy needs, live more ecologically and in closer connection with their communities. Educators, farm adviser’s, international development workers, garden directors, builders, master gardeners, and landscape architects have all reported that what they’ve learned in this course has become a foundation for their work. Farmers, nursery owners, foresters and livestock farmers have all found that Permaculture design has multiplied their incomes, reduced their work, and improved the health of their stock.

Teaching Assistants  on this course: TBA!

Some of O.U.R. Guest Presenters in no particular order: Brandy, Estal, Anthony, Gord, Ann, Jess, Brandon, Ian, Keelin(sp) Pat Hennebery:

Gord Baird: was raised the youngest of five children, where he spent many hours playing in a semi-rural area of Victoria. As a teenager he was introduced to canoeing and kayaking and became hooked on exploring his spectacular West coast surroundings. Originally drawn to a business degree, Gord corrected his course and instead graduated Simon Fraser University with a Bachelor’s degree in experimental psychology. Rather than continue with a Master’s degree Gord fell into the family auto body repair business. It was here that he practiced valuing and balancing ethics and the environment with profit.

Today Gord uses his hands creatively in building everything from homes, gardens, and jewelry. He maintains that his greatest challenge is to live and lead by example, to teach his children that it is OK to step away from a culture marketing self-importance and consumerism.

Brandon Bauer: has been studying Permaculture for 16 years and is actively applying Permaculture on various sites on Salt Spring Island and abroad. Over the last 8 years he has participated in teaching Permaculture Design courses at O.U.R. Ecovillage, The Bullock Brother’s Permaculture Homestead, UBC and at The Blue Raven Farm. He is a naturalist, organic farmer, biodiversity specialist, seed saver, herbalist, and soil scientist. He is the co-creator of The Blue Raven Permaculture Farm on Salt Spring Island. He is currently working with Salt Spring Seeds and Anderson Greenplan. Like Bill Mollison Brandon believes “we are only limited by information and our imagination”. Brandon sees permaculture as one of the most inspiring and action focused ways to live. He continues to practice what he teaches farming on Salt Spring Island, supporting local food and enjoying many lakes of the island with his family.

Brandy Gallagher: With a deep compassion for people and place, Brandy is naturally drawn and adept to working with and within communities. She is dedicated to furthering the regulatory and legal development of legitimate models of land use, alternative building, socially responsible financing, food security practices, ownership, and governance, while aiding others in finding their way through such challenging areas. As one of the main proponents behind the Canadian precedent setting rezoning and with her work in sustainable land management planning and ecological design, Brandy has helped manifest multi-use allowances for ecovillages and shared land projects that encompass a framework of legal, political, and community integration.

Brandy is O.U.R. Ecovillage Co-founder and Developer, O.U.R. Community Association Executive Director, O.U.R. Ecovillage Cooperative Founding Member, Sustainable Communities Teacher and Consultant, Mother, Resident, TOPIA: The Sustainable Learning Community Institute Developer.

Geoff Johnson: is a permaculture pioneer in the Victoria area. Educated through the Bullocks Brother’s Homestead on Orcas Island and Linnea Farm’s intensive agricultural program Geoff has built upon his education through experience. Interning at the Bullock Brothers provided a foundation for Geoff to organize and spearhead Victoria’s premier food forest – Spring Ridge Commons. He operates Cornacopia Nursery providing hard to find perennial plants, consults on food focused designs and farms the 1560 Urban Homestead. He teaches Urban Homesteading and helps infant food forests reach maturity in the lower Vancouver Island area. Called “the Victoria godfather of permaculture” Geoff humbly declines all “offers he can’t refuse”

About O.U.R. Ecovillage:

O.U.R. Ecovillage is a great place to stay: OUR land offers plenty of space to camp. There are diverse natural buildings to see and we have spaces for gatherings of different flavors: a large Yurt (great for circles and dancing), a large Community Classroom (for presentations), the Healing Sanctuary (for quiet conversation and meditation) and the Chillage
(casual covered outdoor space). There are solar showers and composting toilets, and we do have a few guest rooms as well. For some quiet time you can walk the labyrinth, sit by the pond or take a walk in the woods.


I completed a two week permaculture course at O.U.R. Ecovillage in August, 2009, and I found it to be both an enlightening and a grounding experience. I am currently studying to become a doctor of naturopathic medicine, and it struck me how the principles of permaculture could equally well me applied to our bodies as to our Earth. Taking the course helped me to expand my understanding of that “health” actually means by widening my horizons outside of just the health of the individual or the household to encompass all the living aspects of the land on which we live. It struck me that we are so willing to spend thousands of dollars on our health, but what about our environment? We can only be as healthy as the land on which we live and the food which builds our cells, so we need to tread tenderly. This course helped me to form a concrete understanding of how to do that. I came away feeling both inspired and empowered to change the world, one plot of land at a time!

The immersed learning environment of the Ecovillage had a profound effect on the success of this course, whereby all the students ate, drank, showered, slept, rested, played, studied and worked on-site in a community setting. The Ecovillage is such a serene and delicious place to spend your time, and it illustrates a living example of the principles of permaculture from composting toilets, to expansive gardens, to solar showers to cob structures. My experience at O.U.R. Ecovillage this summer enriched and expanded my horizons and I would take another course or just spend some time at the Ecovillage again in a heartbeat. I highly recommend this course and this site to any person of any age or race without hesitation or conditions. – Sarah Berrett, BSc, ND (Cand) 2009

Sounds great! How do I register?

The cost of the course including meals and accommodations is $1970. Register early online by filling out the and clicking the big green button below as this course fills up quickly.

If you are working with a Transition Town planning team, part of a ‘do good’ community project, or are a staff/major volunteer at an educational or environmental Non-Profit – then talk to us about a partial skills-trade.

If you have already completed this or a comparable training, consider OUR Advanced Permaculture Course in Teaching.

Registration Options:

– Dorm Space: This includes indoor shared dorm space with bed linens and bed and your meals are provided.
– Indoor Camping: This includes an indoor shared dorm space that you would need to bring your own bed roll, towels and bedding and your meals are provided.
– Offsite: Provides excellent course instruction and an amazing immersed learning environment, no meals or accommodations are provided.
– Regular: Includes outdoor camping, (bring your own tent, bed roll, towels & bedding) and all meals.

Contact: Form On-site  Phone Us:  +1 (250) 743-3067   Send Email to: info@ourecovillage.org

If you have any questions about the booking process or wish to confirm your booking, please call us at 250.743.3067.

OUR Refund and Cancellation Policy