2017 Ecovillage Design Education Course (April 28th to June 2nd)

2017 Ecovillage Design Education Course (April 28th to June 2nd)

Posted on: April 28, 2017
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Date(s) - 28/04/2017 - 02/06/2017
All Day


5 weeks: April 28th – June 2nd, 2017

Ecovillage Design Education (EDE) Course:

Inspiration and Training for Being a

Response-Able Catalyst for Regeneration


Special Offer:

The Only Place in the World to Get

PDC/EAT and EDE Certifications in one course!


Ecovillage Design Education (EDE) Certificate Course: Leadership Training for Being a Response-Able Catalyst for Regenerative Community


Designing Ecovillages as ‘living community centres’ and as adaptation models for Climate Change and Social Justice in a new global paradigm.

Dates and Times:

April 28th – June 2nd, 2017 (both EDE and PDC/EAT Certification)

  1. April 28 – June 2: Advanced Ecovillage Design Education Certificate (see description below)
  2. April 28 – May 14: Permaculture Design Course and Earth Activist Training Certificate (PDC/EAT) (click here)
  3. May 15-16: Personal integration time, connecting with community, individual meditation and spiritual work


OUR Ecovillage, 1565 Baldy Mountain Road, Shawnigan Lake, BC


The Ecovillage Design Education (EDE) Course

(which includes the PDC/EAT trainings)

This special offering will run over five weeks from the end of April to the start of June.  The full EDE course includes the entire contents of the Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) and the Earth Activist Training (EAT) in the first 16 days with Starhawk, which will be followed by 18 days of curriculum to complete the EDE with international Permaculture & Ecovillage Designer and Facilitator, Jillian Hovey.


Bring your kids and families! We have a parallel little permies course to make this program inclusive!


About the EDE:

The Ecovillage Design Education curriculum was an official contribution to the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development 2005-2014, and is ratified as part of the Global Ecovillage Network and is given full Certification through GAIA Education International.

Course Description and Content:

The EDE syllabus encompasses the “three legs of the stool” of Environment, Economy, and Social, and adds the “Fourth Dimension” of “Worldview” which allows us to explore the more ‘invisible structures’ of how we personally and culturally create the landscape of our human ecologies, and brings forth the New Story that is trying to emerge at this time.

The framework for the curriculum is the sustainability wheel developed by GAIA Education, which represents the four primary dimensions of human experience – Worldview, Ecological, Social and Economic aspects:

EVEduWheel7_600It is a curriculum that is designed for the place where it is offered.  We have a programme for this course that was custom made for OUR Ecovillage by world-class curriculum designers, who will be with you in person to facilitate the course.

Teaching Methods, Schedule, and Intention:

This course is designed and facilitated as a wholistic experience.  We will be creating space to meet ourselves and each other in lectures, discussions, exercises, games, videos, slide shows, field trips, hands-on activities, design exercises and a final design project.

The programme will run all day, with evening sessions about two thirds of the time. There will be time for movement throughout the day, as well as free time to be by yourself and to socialise, including a daily siesta time after lunch; to research in the library and online; days off for rest and integration, and a late start on Sundays.

This innovative EDE is holistic, fractal and holographic: designed to see the whole, partly through specific examples and practices. The intention is to support you in deepening your understanding and practice of the art of regenerative design throughout the course, becoming a pro-active Steward of what is possible.

Online registration will be available shortly.
Call us or email info@ourecovillage.org to register now!

Bring your kids and families! We have a parallel little permies course to make this program inclusive!

Some of the topics / themes to be covered:

  • Innovative tools and models to transform existing social paradigms, including movement towards a more regenerative worldview & practice
  • Social tools for personal transformation, empowerment and leadership & Ecological Activism
  • Nature connection & literacy
  • Restorative Health: personal, planetary & their inter-connections
  • Group and process facilitation, participatory decision making
  • Community building, Non-Violent Communication and conflict resolution
  • Permaculture Ethics, Principles, Tools, & Strategies
  • Green building, renewable energy, and alternative wastewater treatment
  • Alternative economic models and social enterprise
  • Dragon Dreaming and other project management tools
  • An artistic approach to life incorporating inclusive spirituality
  • Climate change and regenerative bioregional responses
  • Applying design and implementation skills to real life 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 and the Earth Activist Training (PDC/EAT)
Weeks 1 and 2 (April 28 – May 14)

Course Description and Content

The Permaculture Design Certificate and Earth Activist Training (PDC/EAT) is the first half of the EDE course.  The PDC covers a broad range of subjects to provide a holistic overview of permaculture systems and sustainable living. Through the Earth Activist Training (EAT), participants will extend the principles and insights of permaculture into progressive political organizing, and explore strategies for change; and will weave in threads of Earth-based spirituality (inclusive and non-dogmatic), to connect heart and soul to the work.

PDC Overview Points:

  • 72 hour Permaculture Design Certificate and Earth Activist Training (PDC/EAT) over 16 days & evenings (this is the first half of the EDE course)
  • packed with learning combining theory with practical hands on activities & design exercises
  • Participants will learn permaculture design principles & techniques
  • Led by Starhawk and various other instructors who are specialists in their field
  • Completion of the course earns participants a Permaculture Design Certificate

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

Summary of the Full, Integrated EDE Programme:

Get a solid grounding in the biophysical (soils, growing, buildings, energy) and the Design Process in the PDC.  That will be enriched by the Earth Activist Training being woven through the PDC, which will bring more of the social aspects to the curriculum.  That will be further rounded out and contextualized by the EDE, so that after completion of the full 5-week programme, you have a solid frame of awareness and possibility to guide and inspire your path forward as a response-able community member.


  • a change agent / facilitator of cultural capacity building for resilient and regenerative living
  • looking for University transfer level of credits to your home university
  • a professional working in the fields of climate change, transition town/city planning, sustainability metrics analysis, etc.
  • a community stakeholder who is invested in bringing together your rural or urban bio-regional project
  • someone who believes in designing solutions for transformational learning/living as the possibility to lead the world into the future we all hope for.
  • Wanting certificates for the EDE and PDC/EAT

EDE + PDC /EAT   =  Fantastic Framework for Inspired Being & Action !!


*If you have taken OUR PDC/EAT previously, you can contact us to negotiate only taking the second half of the EDE!

Bring your kids and families! We have a parallel little permies course to make this program inclusive!


Meet the programme teachers and facilitators:

STARHAWK (main PDC/EAT instructor)

Starhawk is one of the most respected voices in modern earth-based spirituality.She is a founder of Earth Activist Trainings (EAT), teaching permaculture design grounded in spirit and with a focus on organizing and activism. She is developing a model of carbon-sequestering ranching, incorporating holistic management rotational grazing with sheep and goats, restorative forestry, food forests and perennial systems. Read more about Starhawk.

JILLIAN HOVEY (main EDE instructor)

Jillian is an experienced practitioner of regenerative systems living, who co-creates transformative learning experiences in Permaculture and Ecovillage design.  The founder and Executive Director of the Sustainable Living Network in Toronto, she has facilitated whole systems design in over 25 countries internationally. Jillian brings a strong grounding in the conventional biophysical aspects of design, and supports people in developing literacy in human ecology. Read more about Jillian.


Brandy Gallagher, one of the original founders and developers of O.U.R. ECOVILLAGE, and current executive director, is dedicated to outreach projects and the development of O.U.R. ECOVILLAGE as a demonstration/model sustainable village.  She works with other communities/projects to find their way through regulatory and legal processes which challenge the development of legitimate models of land use, alternative building, ownership and governance.


Bryce is a consultant in the fields of sustainable communities, construction and energy, and a lecturer in the University of East London and the Graduate School of the Environment. He is currently finishing a PhD to develop a method of applying Ecological Footprinting to building construction and operations.


Mark Lakeman is the co-founder of the non-profit placemaking organization The City Repair Project, and principal of the community architecture and planning firm Communitecture. He is an urban place-maker, permaculture designer and community design facilitator. In 2003 he was awarded the National Lewis Mumford Award by Architects & Planners for Social Responsibility for his work with Dignity Village.



About O.U.R. Ecovillage:

OUR ECOVILLAGE is recognized around the world as a leader in residential educational programming and has been teaching Permaculture and ecological design courses since 2001.

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 flavours: 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 Eco- B&B guest rooms as well. For some quiet time you can walk the labyrinth, sit by the pond or take a walk in the woods.


We currently have scholarships available to reduce the cost by over $1,000 for selected applicants! Please contact us at info@ourecovillage.org for more information!

  • April 28 – June 2: PDC/EAT + EDE = $3900.00!


  • Meals: 35 days, 3x per-day buffet of delicious meals at the “Zero Mile Eatery”
  • Accommodations: 35 days of indoor or outdoor camping at OUR Ecovillage, use of outdoor and indoor showers, all common spaces!

Accommodation Upgrades Available:   

Upgrade to 35 days of accommodations in our beautiful dorm space, with all linens!

Upgrade to 35 days of accommodations in our farmhouse bunkbed room with linens and lots of extra space


*If you have taken PDC previously, you can contact us to negotiate only taking the second half of the EDE!

Bring your kids and families! We have a parallel little permies course to make this program inclusive!

If you would like to take the PDC/EAT as a stand-alone, check out our Permaculture Design Certificate and Earth Activist Training webpage!


“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 2009