[permaculture] Robina McCurdy Workshop

permed at nor.com.au permed at nor.com.au
Mon Jul 8 07:30:03 EDT 2002

Robina McCurdy will be coming to Australia for the Pc Designers Gathering 
at Djanbung Gardens in August. While here she will be conducting a 
special 1-day workshop to share the valuable experiences gained from the 
Planet Organic training programme. Details below.


A Workshop for Educators wanting to prepare people for the challange and 
fulfillment of a livelihood in permaculture.

A Workshop On:  Developing, establishing and running an advanced training 
course in permaculture, based on the tutor's experiences over the past 3 
This is an additional, complementary WORKSHOP at DJANBUNG GARDENS, 
following on from the designers/educators gathering: 'Edging into the 

TUTOR:  Robina McCurdy of the Institute of Earthcare Education Aotearoa 
(New Zealand). 
Mon Eve 26 AUG (introductory slideshow) & Tues 27 AUGUST (9am - 4.30pm) 

The workshop will include some or all of the following (participants 
interests will guide the aspects we go into in depth):
* developing ethics, vision and goals
* developing learning outcomes 
* developing course content from learning outcomes
* bioregional analysis, to select learning environments & field tutors
* shaping the course structure
* working the curriculum with the seasonal cycles
* learning styles, streamlined and individualised learning approaches
* teaching methodologies
* the role of mentors
* the role of guest tutors
* building the staff team
* building the participant 'learning community'
* assignments, assessment & accreditation 
* financial aspects - funding, course fees, budget, formal/informal 
* contracts - with staff, participants, providers of learning environments
* designing and establishing the campus
* selecting participants vocational placements
* promotion and networking
* replicability - adapting and applying this course (with consideration 
for its pilot year learnings!) to any bioregion.

Social sustainability is often inadequately understood or completely 
overlooked, when designing a formal learning experience. The needs of a 3 
- 6 month or one year course are very different from a two week course, 
which most of us have experience with. Important learnings have emerged 
for us during this pilot year of 'P.L.A.N.E.T. Organic', which have 
informed the course organisers of the need to restructure aspects of the 
course to offer an even more diversified approach to individual rhythms 
and learning needs.  Consequently, how to design a course based on the 
application of permaculture principles to human ecology and will feature 
strongly in this workshop.
WORKSHOP COST:  $65 - $95 (sliding scale - income based)  Note: $95 for 
participants funded by organisations; $10 for people only attending the 
slideshow; cost includes teas, lunch is an additional $7). 

by Mon 19 AUG,  send your name, contact details and brief description of 
your involvement in permaculture, plus a $30 deposit to:
'Swimming in the Slipstream' Workshop
PO BOX 379, NIMBIN NSW Australia 2480
(cheques made out to Earthcare Education Aotearoa)

(initially email only) to:  robina at win.co.nz.  
Website (in progress!):http://earthcare.nelson.org.nz

'P.L.A.N.E.T.  Organic':   background
This February, the Institute of Earthcare Education Aotearoa, began 
piloting  'P.L.A.N.E.T. (Permaculture, Low-impact Agriculture, Natural 
Ecology Training) Organic' - a comprehensive professional permaculture 
training, focusing on the application of permaculture in community 
development and bioregional sustainablility.  This practical year long 
course is based in Golden Bay, South Island of Aotearoa/New Zealand. Half 
of the 20 participants are kiwis and half from other parts of the world 
(8 different countries). The course took two years to develop and 
promote, including its curriculum development by a team of five people.

The course's main learning environment is our local Community Gardens, 
where we follow the seasonal cycle in practical activites, including 
participants working their own garden plots. Other venues are two 
intentional communities (semi-residential) and several diversified 
certified organic properties, which serve as living-learning examples, 
with practitioners as short-term'field tutors'. Towards the end of the 
year, participants are placed within an organisation in another part of 
NZ, learning with professionals working 'out in the world' applying 
permaculture and organics within community development, in the 
participant's vocational field of interest.

Robina McCurdy - background
Robina is a founder of Tui Land Trust and Institute of Earthcare 
Education Aotearoa, located in Golden Bay, New Zealand.  She holds a 
Diploma of Pemaculture Design and for the past seventeen years has been 
engaged in broader community development, permaculture design & teaching, 
eco-village design facilitation, transforming school grounds and 
curricula through permaculture, organic gardening and orchard management. 
Robina has developed many original participatory processes for community 
scale analysis and decision making, and published several environmental 
education resource guides. 

As well as working extensively in NZ, her skill as a sustainable land use 
and community development consultant and facilitator has taken her to 
Australia, South Africa, USA, Brazil, Ireland and Scotland.  Some of the 
organisations which have backed her work are: New Zealand High 
Commission, the British High Commission, NZ Natural Heritage Foundation, 
DANIDA (Denmark), PELUM (Zimbabwe), Context Institute (USA); in Brazil: 
Rio Grande du Sul & Santa Catarina Education Departments, Fundacio Gaia 
(environmental NGO), and in South Africa: Global Ecovillage Network, 
Village Development, Novalis Institute and Abalimi Bezekhaya.

In establishing P.L.A.N.E.T. Organic, her intention is to bring her 
international work back to her home bioregion of Golden Bay - a ripe, 
nurturing and stimulating learning ground for passing on the skills to 
others ready to go out and work at the 'edge' as change agents in 

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