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Are you interested in applying sustainable design concepts to your life and building nourishing relationships between the land, yourself, and your community?


We are excited to share that we are currently working hard on a digital, self-paced, accessible and engaging Introduction to Permaculture workshop that will be launching in the late Spring of 2024!


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Permaculture design takes a holistic approach and is rooted in an ethic of care towards people and the planet. It can be used to design all kinds of spaces, events, organizations, and even life plans.

The term “permaculture” usually conjures up visions of a garden oasis, or a farm planted out with diverse fruits, veggies, shrubs, and trees. But you don’t need access to a backyard or farm to use Ecological Design principles in your daily life, and we aim to teach you how!

This project is funded by the Government of Canada's Community Services Recovery Fund. The Community Services Recovery Fund is a $400 million investment from the Government of Canada to support community service organizations, including charities, non-profits and Indigenous governing bodies, as they adapt and modernize their organizations.

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Ecological Design in Action!

Below are two of our favourite examples of ecological design in action, showing which design principles were used in their creation. You are welcome to peruse and get inspired!

ecological design in action: Sunnyside Piazza!

In a residential Portland neighbourhood, neighbours were complaining of noise, speeding, and abandoned cars. After meetings and workshops facilitated by the organisation City Repair, the community decided to paint a giant sunflower in the intersection. The painting involved residents of all ages and backgrounds, with street performers playing music and a general air of celebration in honour of reclaiming a historic neighbourhood! Over 700 interviews with residents suggest that the community experiences more happiness, health and safety because of the repair! Learn More Here.


This project shows the following ecological design principles in action:

  • Use Edges and Value the Marginal: This community project transforme a marginal space into one bursting with life and colour!

  • Integrate rather than segregate: This project brought together a diverse group of community members, working in collaboration with City Repair and performing artists to create a celebratory “intersection repair” event that would have been too big for a single person or household to complete.

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ecological design in action:Pathways to Resilience!

The Pathways to Resilience program used a “permaculture-infused values curriculum” to help formerly incarcerated people rejoin society in a way that gives them support and personal tools to build a positive future for themselves and their community. Participants received culturally appropriate training in social entrepreneurship, gardening, leadership, peer mentorship, and life skills. They received a permaculture design certificate, a stipend in exchange for participation in the program, and participated in projects that gave back to the community through planting trees for a community orchard. The program was directed by permaculture designer and co-founder of the Black Permaculture Network and Earthseed Permaculture Center, Pandora Thomas. Learn more here.


This project shows the following ecological design principles in action:

  • Creatively Use and Respond to Change: This program intersected with a moment of big change in the participants’ lives. In a community where re-incarceration rates are high and community support for people reentering society are low, the program provided targeted support that would positively influence a pivotal life stage for participants.


  • Obtain a Yield: It’s always important to receive energy back when you put in the work!! In exchange for their time, participants received financial compensation, support, and mentorship.

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Why Digital workshops?


To-date, most of our programming has been offered as in-person community workshops. We understand that some people face financial, mental, or physical barriers to attending workshops in person, and we understand that these barriers were further exacerbated during the pandemic. We have therefore started the process of creating a series of prerecorded digital workshops that will allow our programming to be within reach for more people. 


We are currently at the stage of consulting the community to understand what kinds of topics within the field of ecological design/permaculture are most interesting for people. We are also looking for insights into ways that we can design the workshops themselves to make them relevant to folks who may face barriers that have made attending in-person workshops (offered by RESES or other providers) difficult in the past. This can include things like financial barriers, not owning property, experiencing mobility, physical or mental health challenges, and more.

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