Monday, 1 December 2014

PA NDG - Sensational, Awe-inspiring, Design-filled, Interlacing, Moments, Everyone, Together

Together sums up my first National Diploma Gathering organised by the Permaculture Association (see what I did there - using a Permaculture design framework acronym to explain how the weekend went!!!).

I am just back from an awesome weekend at Casleton YHA attending the Permaculture Association's annual National Diploma Gathering 2014. It was my first time at this event and although I have always had in the back of my mind that I might try to achieve my Permaculture Diploma I haven't really properly considered it. Also as part of my role as a Trustee for the Association I have been exploring (with other Trustees) how best to explain what Permaculture is to the masses. As part of my thought processes over the last few months I revisited what permaculture means to me including re-reading my Transition Town competition winning entry about my PDC (Permaculture Design Course). I wanted to galvanise those thoughts with real connections to other people who are implementing permaculture in their lives whilst also attending workshops and generally being nosey about what happens at these weekends. As a Trustee I get to be nosey with impunity and I am so glad I did!!!

All the workshops were interesting, helpful, thought-provoking, inspiring and a great reminder that Permaculture Design principles can be applied to ALL areas of everyone's lives. The three accreditations which happened during the weekend were awe-inspiring, motivating and fantastic examples of permaculture design having fundamental effects on people's lives. Visit the individual sites here for more information -> Nicole VosperNiamhue Robin and I will add Cathrine Dolleris' site when it becomes available.

In true Permaculture style there were also magical moments at the edges of the event. For example,
  1. I had fortunately flung a few extra crochet hooks into my crochet bag with my latest crochet project and I offered to teach others if they wanted. I got two takers who valiantly battled the crochet handhold and both took home their first pieces of crochet.  
  2. I (and others) were given instruction into how to barefoot run safely and it was such fun to have our running recorded and analysed; be shown exercises to stretch and strengthen calf muscles and various other tips. 
  3. A fab guy called Kev was recording during the weekend to capture the essence of "what is permaculture" from as many people that he could and I did my part by sharing my thoughts (see below *)  
  4. All the conversations with fellow attendees on a whole range of topics from home educating to the benefits of linux over Windows as an operating systems.  
  5. Being visible as a Trustee to the members and touching base with 3 fellow trustees who were also attending. I had wondered whether being a Trustee would mean people would take an opportunity to talk to me in that role and it was a wonderful example of stacking that I could be there as a Trustee and as a potential diploma student.
As someone who has struggled with insecurities in the past it was fab that these types of interactions occurred and that I was also approached for my expertise in shamanism, home education and crochet. I even had someone commenting that they had found my blog posts about home educating useful. I know I write this blog for my own benefit but it always satisfying to know that it is being found, read and been useful to someone.

With regards to my short time with Kev (mentioned above*) it was great for me to realise how much "permaculturing my life" is what I want to do because it is a versatile system which can be used in all areas of life. This has really helped me re-evaluate my ideas around my permaculture projects and some changes will be happening to my website over the next 6 months because of the weekend. I will also be adding content to this blog and getting back to documenting "permaculturing my life!" in an attempt to streamline and effective-y (I so wish that were a real word) my life by using permaculture design.

So here's to a great weekend jam-packed with inspiring workshops and accreditations; useful discussions about all areas of life; crocheting, making new friends, joining networks; being an effective trustee; re-engaging with permaculture design, doing yoga at 7am in the morning (if you know me you will realise what an achievement that is); re-classifying permaculture as a verb and generally having a fun time. Roll on next year as I will definitely be attending another Permaculture Association National Diploma Gathering and I now have a vested interest because I am new member on the Diploma Working Group!!!!

1 comment:

  1. Twas a great event - thanks to all the people that made it happen