Sustainable Development Goals

We are no longer taking registration for the course this year.

If you are interested in taking the SDGs training later, please contact us at 

The Sustainable Development Goals

April 27th – April 28th, 2019

Cost: 120GBP

(CAD price depends on exchange rate. Registration being taken through Findhorn Ecovillage)

Interested in more?

This SDG training is part of an extensive Gaia Education Training of Trainers Course (TOT).

If you are a teacher, academic, civil servant or consultant taking part in the training will almost certainly contribute positively to your professional practice.

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The United Nations has helped call a global transformation path for our planet to move forward with – this framework is embedded in the ‘Sustainable Development Goals” and targeted for 2030 and now part of an international training. OUR Ecovillage has been chosen as the North American first training site for the Global Ecovillage Network (GEN) to facilitate this training and we are proud to offer this for 2018.

After completing training you will:

  • be able to take a multi-dimensional perspective on all 17 SDGs and be aware of the the 169 targets for implementation
  • have participated in a series of small group conversations to brainstorm and prioritise possible multi-stakeholder community projects aimed at implementation of priority SDGs in your local community
  • have identified already existing as well as much-needed policies, projects and resources that might be drawn on, or required, for effective implementation
  • have explored with others how the different SDGs interrelate and how systemic projects can be created that aim to implement progress on various SDGs at the same time
  • have reviewed the wider context of the United Nations’ sustainable development process and its history leading up to the creation of the SDGs
  • have experienced an effective structure for training others so you could potentially use the workshop script along with the SDGs Flashcards to replicate such culturally-creative conversations where and when needed
  • have had an opportunity to work with like-minded people in your community who are also willing to collaborate on local SDGs implementation projects and have identified projects that might be considered ‘low hanging fruit’
  • have brainstormed ideas and strategies for how to mobilise support, how to demonstrate feasibility by implementing successful projects, and how to best spread initiatives that work throughout your community and beyond
  • have taken the first step to becoming an active initiator of conversations that matter to your community and to humanity by helping others to ask important questions about how to implement the SDGs in locally meaningful and relevant ways

Design strategies

of how to mobilize local stakeholders around a feasible project to demonstrate implementation of those goals in their locality and identify effective ways to spread successful projects throughout their community and beyond.

Work in groups

to identify policies, projects and resources that could support this implementation and categorise them into those already existing and those to be created.

Begin to define

how multi-stakeholder partnerships might be established in their community to support project-centred implementation of specific SDGs ensure that SDGs are implemented in ways that are sensitive to the biocultural uniqueness of place.

Prioritise goals

that are particularly important for their community.

In addition to the above, we will have many guest teachers who will bring varied skills, experiences and perspectives to the course!

The UN states that as “we are faced with the challenge of collectively re-designing the human presence on Earth. NOW is the time for transforming humanity’s planetary impact from predominantly degenerative to by and large regenerative! It is our generations, those alive today, who face the task of regenerating the healthy, life-supporting functions of marine and terrestrial economic systems everywhere. In doing so we will create the basis for thriving local communities and vibrant circular bio-economies. We can create a fairer distribution of resources through widespread global-local collaboration while learning to live within planetary boundaries. This is the promise ahead, if we come together across sectorial, national and ideological divides to collaborate in implementing the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at the local, regional and global scale. It is time to get to work – one community at a time!”

Facilitated By:

May is a sustainability practitioner, educator and designer. Based at the UN Habitat Best Practice Designation, Findhorn Ecovillage, since 1992, May has been leading a whole generation of sustainability educators delivering capacity building activities in 48 countries in both urban and rural contexts, and in different stages of development.

Awarded one of the 100 Global SustainAbility Leaders three years in a row, she currently serves as Gaia Education Chief Executive and UNITAR Fellow. An accomplished facilitator of international think-tanks, roundtables and training programmes, May is an inspirational teacher for many. With cross-cultural experience in both Global North and South she has specialised in working with intergovernmental agencies, educational institutions and the United Nations in the creation of policy guidelines for sustainable development.

She has a diploma in Climate Change Diplomacy and an MSc in Spatial Planning.

Giovanni is a sustainability consultant, musician and change agent for peace and social justice. He served on the faculty of the Sustainable Businesses and Communities MA programme at Goddard College, where he completed his MA degree.

He presently works in the management team of Gaia Education and is Coordinator of the online course Gaia Education Design for Sustainability(GEDS). Gio is a past president of the Board of the Global Ecovillage Network(GEN), and co-founder of the Ecoaldea Huehuecoyotl in Tepoztlan, Mexico, an ecovillage based on principles of sustainable living through the arts and ecology.

Gio is passionate about building community, organisational development, facilitation and mindful living. His work emphasises artistic creativity, team building, deep democracy, nonviolent communication, social justice, and environmental responsibility. He is committed to fomenting a restorative culture.

We will have many guest teachers who will bring varied skills, experiences and perspectives to the course! 

Who should take this course?

This training is an opportunity to become an active participant in your community’s future, whether you work in the private or public sector or for a civil society organisation, as a community organiser, teacher, social entrepreneur, concerned parent, pensioner, recent school leaver or university graduate. You can take part simply to engage with others in your community to explore the best opportunities to make a positive difference in collaboration with others. 

group learning

The highly interactive process invites participants to engage in constructive conversations about the local relevance of the 17 SDGs based on a set of flashcards designed to help structure small group dialogues. 

Achieving the Global Goals by 2030 requires initiating these kinds of processes in communities everywhere, and we are all called to become initiators of conversations about the sustainable future of our community.

The SDGs Flashcards in combination with the workshop script and the experience of having taken part in the training, will turn most participants into potential initiators of such community conversations. Participants will be given a brief introduction on how to use the script and the flashcards to replicate the training with their team at work, with local community groups and civil servants, and for students and staff at their local university or schools. Participants will leave the training equipped with the tools and the experience to help others to reflect on why and how the global goals are relevant to their community or business, and what first steps can be taken locally to contribute to achieving humanity’s global goals by

What makes OUR Ecovillage so special?

OUR courses are unique from almost all others as you are stepping into OUR ECOVILLAGE – a 25 acre “Sustainable Living Demonstration Site and Education Centre” and one of the most built out permaculture projects in North America.

For 19 years Our Ecovillage has been working towards “Lawful Permaculture”; having every innovative design and building project that we have created also be fully zoned, permitted & approved by regulatory officials. 

Through partnering with all 3 levels of government, business & corporate sponsors, academia, and the grassroots of the wider community and it’s organizations; at OUR we bring together a range of professionals, permaculture teachers, regulatory folks, and technical stakeholders ready to train others in the next stages of how permaculture projects can become fully legal – like OURS!

More Questions?

Email us at  

Call us during our business hours, Monday to Friday, 9:00am – 5:00pm PST at 1-250-743-3067