Change of personnel
The last three months of this year the College team has been through a process of transition: Hugo Klip joined the College team to become Business Manager, which had been more or less Majk Chamrada's job. Majk changed role and became Educational Coordinator, which had been Mari Hollander's job. And Mari? She is moving out of the College, and stayed on till end of the season to hand over and help us through the transition process.
From left to right: Richard Reardon, Gilda Westermann, Hugo Klip, Majk Chamrada, Melissa Godbeer and Mari Hollander.
A big thank you Mari for all the work you've done for the College those past years. You have steered it well and helped it grow. We will miss the loving way you held the team, and your inspirational presence, wisdom and boldness.
Mari is going to continue to do some work for the College though. She just started co-managing the Origin project in the Park, which is about monitoring if people are going to change their energy usage patterns if they are given the technical devices to make the best use of their renewable energy. This project will last for three years.
Human Challenge of Sustainability
The Human Challenge of Sustainability semester course has brought a group of 10 young women from North American universities to Findhorn. We have just said goodbye to them, at the end of their 3-month learning journey, wishing them all the best in their future.
participants of Autumn'12 semester about the course:
"I have always thought about sustainability in the physical realm and had never realized the importance of personal, social, and spiritual sustainability. Findhorn has revolutionized my thoughts in that way."
'I can't totally explain how much I feel I've grown. I really have learned a lot of communication tools and just life tools to take with me to better my life. I feel I am way more in tune to myself and have the ability to release and flow with what's going on with me. Also obviously we stayed in an ecovillage so on that level of sustainability I have learned a lot and experienced how a community can focus on environmental issues. This community is completely unique and a very beautiful place to live, grow, and be supported in."
More info about The Human Challenge of Sustainability semester courses
English in Community
Learning English in Community is an English course like no other: four weeks spent in the nurturing environment of this world-famous community, four weeks of time in the classroom, four weeks of time spent learning about what the Findhorn Foundation is, and what it does.
For me as one of the course's teachers, one of the privileges of this course is watching people blossom and open up, as they take the first, sometimes tentative, steps in the English language. Through song, games and dance friendships are born, and particpants take in new words without even realising they've done so. Around each week's five classroom sessions those on the course get to spend time out in nature and the local area, and in service departments where even more connections are made.
They're deepening the connections with other members of the course during evenings spent together doing something creative and once a week sharing from the heart where and how each of us is in that moment. It is the heart that is important above all things during these four life-changing weeks where learning or improving English is only one part of what's on offer.
Find out more about the next IEC
Co Creative Healing module 3 (Nov)
Co-Creative Healing has just completed module 3 in which we explored the different voices and faces of our higher self, lower self and mask self.
We used our creativity to make a mask of the face of our lower self. Each group member then acted out their lower self in a five-minutes piece to a chosen piece of music in front of their own group, wearing the mask. This led us to reach into parts of ourselves we might never have shown to anyone else before. It was a very moving experience that made the group connect on a deep level.
We also learned new healing techniques and practiced healing exchanges. When the participants got themselves ready to leave on Saturday morning they felt tired and full, and thought that it had been an incredible week. After Christmas they are going to read their literature and do homework to prepare for module 4 before we return in February 2013.
More info about the training.
Design for Sustainability training (Oct.-Nov.)
The Design for Sustainability training was a great success, with a very creative and inspired group of relatively young people who easily bonded and connected into a whole in the first week.
We were delighted with this success, because it was the first time we hosted this training, after it had been part of the Findhorn Foundation course for many years.
The main trainers, May East, Jonathan Dawson, Michael Shaw and Daniel Wahl, who have been teachers for some or many years, were key to the success of the training.
During the four weeks the participants worked on four projects that they had brought in themselves: an Educational Project and Documentary in Brazilian slums, the development of a French Eco-village, City Gardening in Antwerp and a Malaysian Eco-tourism project.
Each week those projects were worked on from a different angle, in accordance with the theme of the week: social, economical, environmental and worldview.
Thanks to the high level of participation and solidarity of the group, the language problems of those who struggled with English were largely overcome.
Quotes from participants:
'I received a lot from this week. It was very rich and wisely placed as the first module in the program!' (Social Week)
'The content was excellent in this week. It really challenged me personally and I felt very satisfied with the depth of discussion & issues addressed'. (Economic Week)
'Great balance between practical learning and hard fact lectures.' (Ecological Week)
'Wonderful, inspiring, connecting, essential and meaningful week!' (Worldview Week)
Possibility of Grundtvig grant for Design for Sustainability training
Our 5-week long Design for Sustainability training starts on 5 October 2013. The course is validated for the Comenius - Grundtvig Training Database Please note that the deadline for applying for the Grundtvig grant is 16 January 2013
More info about the next training in 2013
Singing in Community (Oct.)
Singing in Community set out to train leaders of community choirs and those who chose to bravely step into this role. It offered its participants a rich repertoire of songs, warm ups, music theory and improvisation but foremost the experience of teaching songs and leading a choir.
For seven days this course held a safe space for its participants to step up, to gain confidence through positive experience and to become more and more skilled. The approach "everyone a teacher and everyone a student" resulted in a high quality learning experience where everybody got excellent feedback.
Two very experienced and passionate teachers explained, as they taught, how they taught, thus creating an exciting and deeply enjoyable learning space. The proof is in the pudding... Our participants returned home and started to lead singing groups with children, friends and retired people.
The participants brought the positive and healing power of singing in community home to places in the UK, Germany and Spain and each did this naturally like the flowing of as many rivers, each singing their very own melody.