Student Testimonials

Brett M:  "The instructors here are top notch. Regenerative Leadership Institute has brought together a wide variety of ideas dealing with not only the treatment of the land and the design of farms, but with the treatment of people and the planet. This course will be life changing for many and I see it rising to be one of the premier courses in the future.

For some the vegan diet is challenging, for me it was refreshing and enlivening. I found myself happy to be there everyday, constantly learning a slew of new information and ideas. One of my favorite parts of the course is the field trips. You get to see a wide variety of organic farms, from the traditional to the esoteric. The two facilitators Slav and H.W. are great souls. There to make sure you have what you need and to keep the peace amongst those of us who are not used to sharing space with a group.

This was an amazing two weeks that I will not forget for a long long time. I made friends that I will probably keep for my lifetime. Thank you Regenerative Leadership Institute! Much love and good luck!."


Deborah F:  "I was part of the first Permaculture Design Course that Regenerative Leadership Institute offered in Eugene, OR. We had an amazing group of people. I really appreciated the effort to create comfort and safety, as being in such close quarters with new folks can be challenging. Not only this did we receive, which in itself was such a blessing, cooking meals together, singing our names each morning, and acknowledging our interconnectedness, but we also learned how to survey sites, analyze their needs, develop plans for spaces, implement change, and evaluate efficiency and efficacy.

It was lovely to take field trips to experience what people have manifested, to be inspired to glean ideas and work toward the reestablishment of Earth/Human symbiosis, a vast task no doubt, however, each participant of this course leaves largely empowered though, amazingly, armed only with a single straw... but in that one straw...

I very much recommend this course to anyone experimenting with barnyard homesteading, people who just love nature and cultivation, or anyone hungry for some sincere human connection."


Marlee F:  "The experiences I have had and people I have met has been life changing. On these trips, a community is created and everyone's individuality is honored, welcomed and celebrated as you work together each day to prepare meals, confront issues large and small and discover how each and every one of us can be the change that we wish to see in the world.

The programs offered are exciting, intellectual and mind expanding! Be prepared to meet awesome people, eat lovingly prepared healthy food and connect truthfully and completely with yourself, your fellow travelers and the world around you"


Karen A:  "I participated in the first Regenerative Leadership Institute Permaculture Design Certification course held at the Berkeley site in early 2010. It was a course I had been wanting to take for several years, but the logistics for other courses didn't fit my carbon footprint ethic. This course was intense, well-rounded (in that we got plenty of hands-on experience in a local youth collective garden), required participation by the students in multiple venues, as well including top-notch teachers and guest speakers."


Jessica M:  "Regenerative Leadership Institute's Permaculture Design course was a genuine heart and mind opening experience. If you are interested in finding how you can be part of the life giving earth healing solution in today's global ecological and social crisis this course gives you an in depth and extensive overview of what it takes to make it happen.

A highly interactive curriculum enables students to work together building deep bonds and lasting friendships that enables learning not only from the teacher but from each other's unique experience.

The guest speakers were phenomenal as were the field trips and hands on experience essential in creating the connections to understand the design theory in action.

Since Regenerative Leadership Institute's course I have been empowered to continued my path as a permaculture designer studying natural and green building at Merritt College in Oakland.

Permaculture design should be an essential course for anyone who is serious about ecological and social justice and wants to learn how to be empowered and make changes that aren't dependent on waiting for bureaucratic government systems to change their abusive ways.

If you're ready for that paradigm shift of consciousness take the next Permaculture Design course with Regenerative Leadership Institute as soon as you can."


Doug D:  "The permaculture class offered by Regenerative Leadership Institute was a wonderful (if trying) experience. The class makes the student confront basic issues/contradictions that we face--and offers uplifting answers/possibilities so that the student can move forward. I enjoyed the intensity of it; others may not (the class/experience is MUCH more than a simple exploration of organic gardening and permaculture design.) Highly recommended."


Lauren D:  "My experience with the Permaculture course offered in Eugene, OR was ideal, and I do, and will continue to recommend it to my friends. I impulsively signed up at their website without reading all of their rules/polices (which was foolish, but I said it was impulsive, right?). I have no regrets as everything worked well for me, the travel, accommodations, food, group experience, faculty and guest presenters, curriculum, pace, the trips to farms and other experiences were exactly what I needed to get my 'head right' on the impact I would like to make in my communities. It provided a wonderful opportunity to broaden my idea of what is possible in a cooperative community.

Upon arrival, honestly, I did not know what to expect other than I was ripe and ready to learn a new way of approaching the same problems. (Being from a large mid-western city that is stuck into the "what's in it for me" attitude.) The course was a refreshing way to refocus on what is important to me and shift away from a stagnant mind-set.

I can recommend their course, sure, it was a wonderful program with wonderful people, meaningful interactions, awesome coursework, a very hands on experiential adventure. For that, I am grateful. Thank you."


Gene M:  "Completed the Urban Permaculture Design Certification Course. Came away with a way of perceiving our earth and a set of principles and practical tools for addressing the corporate profit-based mindset that has created our dependence on Petrochemicals. Our teachers, Jay and Sage, brought a wealth of experience, a perfect blend of science and spirit. Great guest teachers on a broad range of topics. Exposure to community-building experiences. Hands-on, in the field experience in Permaculture practices. Networking. Inspiring. By the end of our twelve Saturday twelve hour classes we had become a genuine community. I recommend the experience."


Nancy G:  "I enjoyed the Certification program very much. I feel I will probably stay in touch with my cohort for my lifetime. We came from various backgrounds - VERY different. Many different belief boxes and what I loved most was that in the end, we are a family. There was an opening of new ways to look at things, and some of remembering of old ways to look at things; all of which are very dear to my heart. Slav is not a PR person, What impresses me about him, is his passion to make a difference in the world, and his vision to see and move into the URBAN permaculture and Social permaculture part of the puzzle.

What I love best about our class was watching the interactions. I have a personal belief that if I wish my outer world to be more at Peace, I must first look inside myself to see what I am not at peace within me and find a way to become one with it. This happened in our class dynamics, and I was grateful to see it at work during our time together.

The Gardens were very fun! I had a Blast learning about mycelium, aquaponics, cob, rock walls, cardboard sheet mulching, ,mapping, swales, burms, and fishtails, sit spots, greywater, green building, fair trade, carbon foot prints, stacking functions and much more. But most of all was the coming together of the group and working through our difficulties, helping each other out, and finding common ground to build our relationships on.

This course was wonderful. I think the course will grow and evolve over time. The constant, will be the coming together of heart thinking.That for me is just such an great thing!"


Elsie G:  "I can only imagine the preparation involved in running a course like this. I think you did an excellent job, and it was certainly an educational (and social) experience for me. The instructors were great. I didn't agree with all perspectives, but it was nice to hear them. It was a lot of information to absorb, and I'm sure some of it is still seeping in. "


M'Lissa R:  "I like to eat healthy, fresh and organic produce so for me, it was not a stretch to eat the meals that were prepared and served during the course."


Katherine G:  "Larry Korn gets a 10 on a scale from one to five. He was absolutely amazing-- he GETS permaculture or permaculture GETS him. I am so glad we were able to spend a week with him and pick his brain. He has the EXPERIENCE that is necessary to teach such a subject and he is an incredible instructor. "


Nancy F:  "I enjoyed the community setting, the classrooms and the opportunity to see the splendor of the bay and Golden Gate Bridge on a daily basis. The highlight was the fascinating, friendly and well-educated group of people who attended. I feel very fortunate to have had contact with so many of these folks and continue to keep in touch with many. The experienced could have been greatly enhanced by offering evening discussions or activities in the area. "


Marsha G:  "First time to spend so many days in Fort Mason. A beautiful site. Historical buildings with high ceiling. Natural lights and air circulation created a pleasant learning location. Excellent instructors sharing their knowledge. Non traditional educational style, less on the lectures and more on the sharing and interactive exercises. I consider these 5 days well spent. Since I didn't have any expectation about the course, everything is a learning experience for me. Fellow classmates were all dynamic community proactivists. Great to spent the time learning and connecting with various instructors and participants. "


Andrew S:  "All materials and the teachers were fantastic. I loved our various day lecuturers - and was nice to hear from varied voices working in the field. Working at Hayes Valley Farm was great! I loved being at Fort Mason. The classroom facilities were outstanding to me. Really enjoyed my time there. Life changing. Very grateful. Thank you!"


Anne M:  "Thought it was all very interesting and raised by excitement level about the class. Loved the obvious passion and commitment of the teachers and the great wealth of information all of them were. I thought the group of students were on the whole very supportive of each other and that was a wonderful part of the experience. I thought Saundra was artful and thoughtful in her handling of the class, support of each student and knowledge she had to offer."


Evelyn B:  "In addition to what I learned from the instructors I also learned a lot from my classmates. It was really great to meet like-minded people and make some new friends. The instructors (primary and guests) were great."


Heather M:  "The classroom had no walls, it wasn't a single place or persons. I learned and shared with peers in an open community atmosphere. each and every person gave to me a special gift - and my life has changed! I miss everyone. The site visits were very thought provoking and a true treat. Each place different and special in its own right - it was an important factor in the journey to see so many examples of change. I think the site was a perfect location for our course - very beautiful! Steve and I really enjoyed camping under the pear tree. it was inspiring to be camping out in a transformed urban backyard - it made to content of the course a lived in reality. "


Reena S:  "I met some really great people and my approach to thinking has changed. My understanding about what is possible is broadened. Great variety of guest instructors who brought a lot of great material to the cost."


Rebecca E:  "It was particularly beneficial to hear from the voices of several instructors. This was the course's strength for me. "


Mariza Z:  "I was inspired and deeply appreciative of the level of quality in he instruction and the level of personal engagement with the instructors who were all clearly moved and motivated by the material at hand. The site visits were really interesting and informative. I especially enjoyed meeting Harry and visiting Sunbow farms. All of the sites were unique in there own way and it was inspiring to see how the ideal of permaculture could be implemented in such a variety of ways and scales. I do wish that the service projects could have been more intentionally instructive in teaching us skills related to creating permacultured environments (ie: caring for chickens, building natural structures, harvesting and planting edible landscapes). However, the inclusion of service projects are in and of themselves fantastic in showing gratitude to our hosts and getting a feel for their daily lives.

I loved the course site and our hosts. The strawbale classroom was welcoming and comfortable. The composting toilets were a life changing, perception altering experience, and the natural environment / native ecosystem was extraordinarily nurturing. The experience was definitely impactful. I am still processing all that I learned during the course and figuring out how it will manifest changes within my life and community. In future incarnations of this course, I would like to see even more emphasis placed on meditation and internal processes. "


Cindy N:  "I thought the instructors were very knowledgable, positive and very helpful. Thoroughly enjoyed them. Very diverse experience & views of permaculture. It was an amazing experience. It really opened up my mind on what true sustainable living looks like & how important all living things are to the quality & health of my life & the planet. I am forever changed. I made some amazing connections that I will keep forever. I couldn't have asked for a more perfect, peaceful place to reside. Amazing energy, very beautiful hosts, and an incredible example of sustainable living with the earth."


Amalia B:  "The people, instructors, course material: all these things made this course a most enjoyable experience for me! I am grateful! I really loved seeing the farms and meeting the farmers."


Erin C:  "The community was by far the best aspect of the course for me. I felt a lot of trust and compassion from each fellow participant and thoroughly enjoyed getting to know them and having interesting conversations. I also feel like I learned a lot from the instructors, site visits, and heart of now. Larry and Shaktari were both very knowledgeable and kind; I enjoyed their instruction very much. All of the sites were very interesting. I personally liked Lost Valley the best and getting to build the cob house."


Sarah G:  "All instructors were professional and demonstrated a passion for the earth and nature. AMAZING guest speakers really rounded out the experience."


Stephen K:  "I learned a lot and met some wonderful people."


Desmond C:  "Loved the sites. Having some hands-on experience is what made this class so great to me. Brigid house was great for it's location and nature as a home to many, and the community garden felt a little more open-ended. Core instructors were fantastic, and most of the guests were great as well."


Adelle B:  "I felt so grateful to be eating all organic, vegan and gluten free for two weeks! I learnt a lot from the people I came in contact with, and was grateful for the entire experience of it all. You provide such a great service to people, educating, inspiring and motivating them towards enhancing their lives through personal growth and awakening them to their own power to create a shift in the world."


Sarah T:  "Never in my life have I been able to interact with such a group of instructors who are not only passionate about what they are doing but also about sharing it with us and empowering us to act upon our values and visions. This is possible, in part, because this program recognizes that great teachers are born out of passion and authenticity, not necessarily from degrees. I want to thank all of the instructors and leaders for their contributions to a powerful experience. I am deeply grateful for this experience, and I do feel like it has changed my life for the better.

The site visits were all inspiring because they were part of a conversation that is happening right now. From a bio-diesel gas station to a neighborhood cob house construction, we got to be in the presence of real people acting on what they believe in to create a world they would like to live in. Existing in this type of creative tension is exciting and demands respect in my opinion.

The program was intense, and challenging, but also rewarding. I can't really say enough good things about it. This is not to say that it was perfect, but it was truly transformative. I will never be able to look at the world through the same lens again, and for that I am grateful. I also feel a great sense of responsibility that comes with awareness of what is and what can be and I have a clearer sense of purpose and direction for my life that was a living seed in me before the course that broke its shell afterwards. The breaking of that shell can be painful at times, but it's part of a greater process. The beauty of life comes from the diverse range of human experience, not just the pleasant ones. I repeat a note of gratitude once again. "


Adelle B:  "I think you have a fantastic initiative I and I will continue to fully support everything it is you are working towards. You provide such a great service to people, educating, inspiring and motivating them towards enhancing their lives through personal growth and awakening them to their own power to create a shift in the world. "


Rachel R:  "The site visits were well organized, interesting, entertaining, informative, educational, and often gorgeous; many boasted prime examples of working components of the ideals of permaculture in practical use, and if some of the guides were a little bit vague or less than enthused, that is no fault of Regenerative Leadership Institute's.

Overall, what can I say? The people, the surroundings, the good feelings... It all came together to create an extraordinary experience. The few small gripes I had don't hold a candle next to the warm, bright, and happy memories I now have from my time with Regenerative Leadership Institute."


Jillian P:  "I liked the variety of scale of site visits. It was nice to see people with small yards, the small farm and then the many acres as well. It was definitely fun to be working with the whole group. The very last day at Dharmalaya, while pulling some weeds, a few people commented that they had wanted to be doing that the whole time. Things sort of made more sense when we were actually outside doing."


Lynn F:  "I really appreciate the work you put into this program. Coming back home to reflect on my experience is really what put it together for me. I can really see now why this program would be the leading permaculture school in the nation. The additional teachers were just as important as what Larry taught. I would definitely recommend this program to others, especially if the same or similar teachers are included."


Christine Y:  "Thanks again for an awesome course!"


Christiane W:  "I learned so much at every level. The meals were out of this world. The teams did such a creative job of cooking something new each day and presenting it with such artistry. "


Lia R:  "I really felt it was a transformative experience. And I think the site (Hidden Villa) played a big part in making the time SING for me. "


Lana T:  "Every instructor was so knowledgeable and intelligent. I have worked teaching accounting at private state colleges, and the instructors at those institutions could not even compare to those who taught this course. It is two sides of a coin- glad to be on the side I am most aligned with. This is the beginning of really thinking , creating and learning outside the box. I have been many places in this long lifetime. There are many places I have been that I called Heaven on Earth. Hidden Villa is one of those places.

This course was the BEST time I have had in the past 6 years"


Jaye M:  "I really enjoyed the experience, I can feel my permaculture mind continuing to grow as things settle in from the course."


Lana T:  "A note of gratitude to you. Almost a year ago, I took your course at Hidden Villa. I was not certain why I had signed up, but having been a gardener most of my life, I wanted to know more about permaculture. One concern was the cost- would the course be worth the expense? Final answer- It was worth every penny and MORE! And currently it feels like it has regenerated. Second concern was the title, "Regenerative Leadership". Why leadership- not my agenda from the way I viewed it, but it was about leadership of the life I wanted to live and learning how to get along with others and accept them for their way of life.

During the course I learned the ethics and principles of permaculture and put them to use as my way of life. I sold my suburban home because a friend and I have purchased 51 Southern Exposure Permaculture Acres, a Sunny Delight where the Cedars are ringing. I will settle onto it at the beginning of the New Year.

You and Larry gave me the e-mail of a person you know in the town I live in. I contacted that person on my return and we become friends and I have met so many others through him. He helped me find a rental when my house sold which is a suburban permaculture communal area where I continue to learn more. I have met so many Wwoofers from all over the world, all of them have been wonderful acquaintances. New doors open daily. I may have entered the last trimester of my life, but my life is full of work and play that bring me Joy every day. Thank you. I love what you gave me and hope and intend to give it to others."


Jeanne L:  "Good group of instructors, very dynamic. Vladislav is an excellent coordinator! Nice choices of site visits for the time constraints. Maximum variety. Good group of people, good event flow, good information, good connections.
"


John C:  "One of the best life decisions I've ever made.

I really liked the instructors, the space, and the flow of the course. The timing of Samantha's workshop was really good, because it was enough time into the course so that we were all comfortable in the space and with each other, and we were able to get deep and true and honest with ourselves. So if possible, maybe keeping that style of workshop in the mid-point or just past midpoint of the course.

I loved all of the site visits, especially Harry MacCormack's paradise. Favorite by far was working with Heiko on the adjacent land to Dharmalaya. I had expected during the course to be doing a lot more hands on and maybe a little more community engagement but the level of activity we did do was good."


Mirra S:  "I was very inspired by the group of instructors who came through to teach our class. The course really feels like a jump off for more focused in depth study/practice with use of the permaculture principles. Sunbow was a very enriching experience. site #2 was a good realistic vision of a food farmer who employs some permaculture principals.

Dharmalaya is a great space to learn this material. Great instructors. Great experience. The more hands on learning the better!
"


Donna C:  "Instructors were very knowledgeable and passionate. Very friendly and helpful! Prepared well.

Heiko was well organized and that helped with learning varied skills. The first site with the posters etc with Jan was a good basic start and it was nice to see the permaculture in practice. The biofuel sight was a good insight and linked to the other issues in perm. Nice to actually have an expert talk rather than just read about fuel. Other sites rounded out the program. Would like more perma sites.

Well put together. I would have learned more with more sleep. Don't really know how to resolve that. I feel each of us had our exhausted days. A waste not to be sharp at all times."


Vanessa H:  "Excellent! Great to have instructors from their various backgrounds. Each one had so much to offer. They presented information in a clear fashion making it easy to learn.
It was really neat to see more then one kind of farming site. The farmers were all very nice and so willing to answer questions and share how they each ran their farms.

The first service project was more like a tour, so it was different then I had anticipated but still informational. I feel the second service project was a more fulfilling experience. We learned exactly why we were doing each activity, he shared so much knowledge with us, and he was very organized. There were several projects and we all rotated and had the opportunity to experience each one.

Great experience, I learned so much more then I had anticipated. I will definitely utilize the skills I have gained here in my personal life and I hope in a professional sense as well.
"


Golriz J:  "One of the most inspiring , grounding, loving, peaceful yet revolutionary group of people I have ever met in my entire life. The inspiration and information i learned and shared within the Regenerative Leadership Institute education is something i can revisit any time in my life and feel more confident about my own path anytime. Highly recommended!"


Christi B:  "LOVED THEM ALL!"


Nicole G:  "Samantha was by far my fave person instructing! She was just the right person {and only female..hmm} to bring it all together in a way that made sense to me.

Extraordinary as far as pace..whoa!

THANK YOU! Was a very, very, full 9 days that I am happily reflecting on...while sitting in my back yard, staring at the corner where a water tank will one day be ;)
"


Travis F:  "I thought each instructor did a great job presenting their material in an understandable manner. I came away with a rekindled sense of wanting to get back into making the world a better place. I'm finding, however, that this spark needs tending after leaving the inspirational high of the course. It's so easy to slip back into our old lives and habits.
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Matt F:  "The instructors were all amazing and each brought a unique perspective to permaculture.
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Ben M:  "I really appreciated the non-linear approach to education all of the instructors embodied. Max in particular was an incredible instructor with and easy going and funny personality that added to the already awesome concepts he was teaching. I really enjoyed having Samantha's energy around every day and her wise contribution to discussion.

The number of sites that we were able to visit in such a short period of time really allowed us to see an array of not only permaculture practices in action, but other farming techniques that provided contrast to permaculture.

Heiko's energy was contagious! He was also very organized and ready to put a large group to work on a number of different project. I really enjoyed meeting Jan and visiting his property, but I would have loved to work on a few more projects. Maybe one more service project would complete that aspect of the course.

I love to camp and the site was very conducive and comfortable for that. To live on a permaculture site while learning permaculture was invaluable. To walk around and see the principals in action certainly added to the experience.

I am extremely grateful to call myself a graduate of this permaculture course. I really had no expectations going into the course, but was pleasantly surprised by the dialog that took place in and out of the classroom. This course inherently seemed to attract very aware people and I think that in itself really distinguished it's path. For that I think Regenerative Leadership Institute did a a great job of marketing and organizing.
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Judy F:  "Though I enjoyed all of them I really liked Max. The course wasn't what I expected, but it was what I needed. Thank you for all that you did to put it together.
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Patty M:  "Just excellent. I really liked Sunbow Farm and thought that Frank did a great job with the tour, particularly regarding the composting and compost tea system.
The tour in the neighborhood was really a wonderful example of permaculture in action in so many ways!
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Shawn R:  "These instructors were top notch, dynamic, and engaging. I thoroughly enjoyed the group interaction, group circles, and especially the movement portion of this amazing experience!

It was extremely beneficial to see the permaculture principles being used at Jan's and Heiko's homes. They enabled me to generate my own ideas as to how I will begin to transform my home and my community!

I wish the course was longer, possibly 12 days, just a more even number. Otherwise, spectactular -- I plan to take more classes in the future with Regenerative Leadership Institute. Unfortunately, work gets in the way, but I am working to change that!"


Stacey M:  "You did an extraordinary job of finding wonderful people to share their unique perspectives. I truly loved them all! I loved the variety of people that we visited. Each of them had their own unique specialty.

The service project I was REALLY impressed with was with Heiko. He was truly a wealth of knowledge, and was awesome at explaining to us why we were doing each project, and how it worked.

Thank you so much Vladislav! The way you put together this course is just amazing! You have created an awesome balance of information, inspiration and community.
"


Sandra F:  "All dynamic people who know the material as it is their passion as well as vocation. A wealth of knowledge and they love to share the knowledge and their experience

Rewarding. Starting to implement some principles into my "landscape".
"


Gladys W:  "The instruction was clear and the instructors are great.
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Sarah T:  "The instructors offered energy, wisdom, experience, and grace and are leading examples of what real people can achieve with passion, determination, and humility.

We got to feel the transformative and even expedient power that a small group of people can have on a place.

I gained a sense of personal clarity that is unrivaled in my life.

"


Cyrus K:  "All the instructors were great esp. Max, Mark and Samantha. Got a good idea about permaculture - a big pictures with different areas that one can venture into - hope the resources are available as we progress and have to make choices.
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Rebecca N:  "They were good to extraordinary and got my interest in wanting to come to the course. Since I was living not too far away from Eugene, I jumped at the chance to apply for the scholarship to take the course. Thank you for selecting me!

I adored each and every one them that were our facilitators and instructors! Vladislav is a dear and loving, sensitive soul. How amazing Vladislov is to design this course training with so many exceptional people. This program would not be what it is without him! And Samantha, such a lovely, sweet lady, such a compassionate and inspiring spirit. Certainly without the two of them the course would have not been as cohesive, bringing together all the important emotional and spiritual parts of the training. Jay was wonderful with his beginning presentation for permaculture, great slideshow and videos, and the gardening project. Mark was wonderfully enthusiastic about spreading permaculture practices within the city - urban areas -- and the field trip following to Dharmalaya made it all a reality, and dream come true! Max was truly amazing, and his enthusiasm and genius was undeniable, and he was mentioned so many times as the favorite part of the training.

Before signing up for this training course, I was particularly interested in aquaponics, and Max's experience in designing several large Aquaponics systems was very encouraging for me. I also enjoyed Max's presentations and slideshow he had prepared, showing all the different permaculture systems he designs, including his own home. However, I still must get back to the emotional training presented by Vladislov and Samantha, with the Trudell video and audio recordings, and the open discussions that followed. By getting our focus back to the culture and ways of our ancestors is a major portion of the ideals for the permaculture movement. The other videos that were shown during the course, some of Mollison's, and the other leaders in the permaculture movement were great, too. I'm looking forward to the new book Vladislav will be writing soon.

I would do it again in a heartbeat. I fully appreciated all the effort that went into designing this course, and I loved meeting all the new people who became such good friends during the course. I now feel I have a good understanding of all the newest practices in permaculture, and what is needed to keep our planet alive. I have more faith that we may be able to save some of people on the planet, and turn around the destructive forces that are threatening our existence, and overcome the pollution that has been ruining our environment. I have some hopes in seeing permaculture systems replacing industrial farming, reconditioning our depleted soils, and increasing crop yields to feed our hungry planet. However, creating more food, and not establishing more birth control will not solve the overpopulation problems. I foresee some more collapse in overpopulated countries and those without enough fresh water sources. With climate change and global warming, even using permaculture practices will be a challenge, and many changes will come with the lack of fossil fuels as the supplies decline. I've come back to my home again to live with my family, daughter and grandkids as a result of taking this course. I want to continue to develop permaculture systems on our ranch home property to help sustain us in the years ahead. With 1.5 acres to farm, a fresh water well producing 100 gal/minute, and a solar (grid-tied) system to be changed over to off-grid, we may have a chance of survival. (If we can protect ourselves).

I am forever grateful to all of these amazing individuals who shared their visions and expertise with our class. And the class participants were exceptional, too. I loved them all! Keep on doing what you're doing! You're the best! You are so desperately needed...

Very inspiring to see first hand what these Oregonian Leaders in the permaculture movement have done. Seeing these permaculture practices and systems created and functioning was greatly encouraging and made it a reality for me with hands on experience. A must for all permaculture training courses."


Jonathan W:  " Everything was very thorough and easy to follow. My wife Gunjen and I were able to make the trip with all the information we needed. Even response of phone calls and emails were all very timely.

I'd like to individually speak about all the instructors, and I will say as a whole this was the most supreme education I've received in my whole life of 31 yrs on the planet.

Vladislav told me he's not one that needs a pat on the back, and still I feel he should be commended for bringing together such amazing human beings for the benefit of the course. I was highly impressed of the flow and the transparent communication over the entire course. I especially appreciated the meditation everyday, and of course from my background I wish they were longer, and possibly another at the end of the evening.

Samantha to me was one of the most important energies of the course. I truly felt the Divine Mother Aspect at work through her, and for me having that woman energy is very important in allowing others to feel comfortable to open up, and release their personhood or inhibitions. I heard from several people after Samantha's day with the group that they grew so much in that one day. One thing I would mention is that there was a bit of a void the last day without Sam there, and hopefully in the future she or someone like her (good luck finding someone:) should be present for the final presentations.

Jay Ma is a wonderful soul, and I'm so fortunate to have met him. Of course the highlight for me was the indigenous tale at the end of the night. Jay's passion for the story and those people shined out of his heart, and I could put myself right in the time and place it happened and connect deeply with the indigenous people through the wonderful story. It was lovely to be in the field with him working hands on. I felt Jay to be a true gentleman and a kind soul that cares for Mother Earth and all beings. I appreciate the diversity with having Jay Ma as a part of the instructors, not everyone has the same teaching style and for me it was wonderful to have a very personal touch with Jay.

Mark from City Repair was of course a great presenter and I enjoyed his humor and overall silliness that still in fact would drive home a very important point in an easy-to-understand way. His portion has inspired me to do the same thing for communities in Houston, starting with 3rd Ward which is the African American community that Gunjen and I actually lived in for 2 years.

Max Meyers: Oh boy this was the big highlight for me, just fast forward intense programming of knowledge. I appreciated that Max would give respect to others and still continue to be himself, even if that meant using a comment that not everyone will agree with or enjoy, at least he was clear about who he was and gave respect to everyone before carrying on. I personally had zero problems with anything he said just based on the fact that Max admitted that he just is who he is. And I love him that way. I felt like I was in super hero training school, being taught by the world's greatest super heroes. I personally would have enjoyed another FULL day with Max.

I also feel like this is not the end of something but the beginning. I have said before and I'll say it again. I have the month of November (and possibly several months after) dedicated to serving this thing we are calling permaculture and I would enjoy to share that time with ALL the divine beings we learned from as a volunteer service from the heart, in exchange to keep learning what I feel to be my place in the world, in a field that is absolutely the most necessary step we can take as a one world people. I WANT TO START INTERNING IMMEDIATELY if any or all of you need some physical support, I would stick my hand in a toilet, or pick up trash or do what ever I could to aid your lives and support you, because you support the Earth. You all are already doing what I desire most in my heart, so why not join up with you and aid the process. I'm offering you my life to this and will give everything I have!

Site visits were by far my favorite part of the course. Because I am like a sponge and I was literally soaking all the knowledge when we went to the site visits, I didn't even have to be told what was what. I could look and see the permaculture principals in living action. I began to have these illustrious visions and had to tame myself from just leaving my body altogether, I'm not exaggerating. My heart was very receptive to all I was witnessing and the people we met were some of the most quality people you can find on the planet, and you could sense it immediately. It was at this moment that my visions lead me to understand my complete purpose in life. Since then I have had this intense wash of calm all over me. I have been so impatient in wanting to get my music career moving and now all that weight is lifted. Now I am not in a hurry, these visions I had on this day told me I was in the exact right place and the exact right time, and now it is up to me to act, which is why I say again and again, my only desire now is to intern and help and further along the amazing progress that has already been made so that all our dreams see their manifestation. I simply could not stop myself from gushing with tears of joy at having this experience. There is so much more I could say about this portion and I think you get the idea.

Again this is a very big highlight for me, actually getting into the soil and working and sweating that is when I thrive and learn most. And of course the design projects were a huge overturning of energy. It gave us the ability to leave from the course with ever tool we need to make our own presentations.

As I said overall I felt like I was in super hero training school, with teachers or (co-learners) that have all the inside super hero knowledge that everyone in the world needs to learn and implement. I can't go back. I'm forever changed. Everywhere I look now that I'm in Houston I see opportunity screaming out at me. To me I'm not getting upset and all the wrong doing. I only see growth and improvement and I think things like this course are at the core of that improvement and I wish to dedicate my life to that service! To me there is no amount of money that could give proper worth to the awakening I have discovered with this course. I'm forever grateful and will stop at nothing to see the dreams of the permaculture community come to fruition. It's my duty, what other choice do I have? To me there is only one... proceed..."


Lilia S:  "The teachers are very passionate and know the material. Wonderful teachers!!! Despite all my likes and dislikes, this was the best birthday present I gave myself, and the best present the Universe gave me too. I was surrounded by beautiful souls, and this is what it counts the most."


Sonya S:  "I cannot speak highly enough of the instructors. Every single one of them was not only an expert in their field, but also wildly enthusiastic about their work and incredibly skilled at sharing their knowledge and passion with others. I feel very blessed to have had the opportunity to learn from such amazing people. Can I rank the instructors at 10 out of 5?! That's what they deserve. RLI is to be congratulated for bringing together such a stellar group of instructors. The course content was brilliant and went way above and beyond the required PDC curriculum.

The site visits were wonderful. It was fantastic to progress from learning theory to seeing examples in real life. I loved all the interesting people we met and how happy they were to share with us what they were doing. Very relevant to the course and made the material we'd been learning come to life.

It was really fun to be involved in the renewal of the garden site. It was a great choice of project for our group, big enough that everyone could get their hands dirty, but not so big that we didn't have a sense of accomplishment at the end. I'd have loved to have had a little longer to complete it, but I realize this was logistically impossible with everything else that had to be squeezed into the time available.

The site was absolutely lovely. Very peaceful and relaxing, important when your brain is being filled to the brim with new information! I suppose my only idea for future sites is that it would be fun to stay in a place that had more examples of the things we were learning about, e.g. cob buildings, composting toilets, greywater wetlands, etc.

Extraordinary really is an appropriate word to describe my experience. It was so much more than a PDC. Not only did I learn information I already knew I wanted to learn, I gained so many new ideas and insights into how to better use skills I have, what my next move should be, where I ultimately want to go with all this, etc. I also made some great new connections with people and gained a lot more confidence too. To Vladislav, Samantha, Jay, Mark, and Max, thank you so much for everything!!! I hope I'll have the opportunity to see you all again, helping out at a future course. It's really magical what you've all created together and I hope it continues long term.
"


Matthew E:  "All of the instructors were amazing. Everyone brought an amazing piece to the game of design. Amazing instruction. It was incredible to see what is happening locally and everyone's story. The stories were very powerful. I loved getting hands on experience for a couple of the days. I would say there should be a hands on component with every course.

I loved being on the farm. it was a very relaxing and gentle site. The hosts were amazing. It was such a great experience to eat such simple meals. i am use to having meat in my diet and it was a wonderful change to just have a lot of veges and grains. I learned a lot about my self and my surrounding. I did a lot of good listening and have gained new perceptions with my journey through the nine days.
"


Jeanne L:  "All the instructors are top-notch and experts in their own field; but even more importantly, they are obviously very passionate about their work, which is very inspiring.
Thanks so much for arranging the great site visits. The project was a very good group experience. It may have been more engaging for each of us if the group was a little smaller--like 4-5 instead of 9.

Very good, healthy, vegan meals. Would be excellent if there were more varieties.

The overall course met my expectations. The cohesiveness of the group and inspiration from the instructors exceeded my expectations.
"


Reese J:  "The meals were tough, but ultimately good. I have tried to keep up the non-dairy and meat protocol. For the most part I have done so. The few times I have broken the diet, I felt sick but the meals through the course have been a good catalyst for changing my dietary habits.

It was good. I'm glad that I choose to attend this workshop."


Debra R:  "I learned a lot. There's no way I could pick one of Jay, Mark or Max over the other as the best... They were all fabulous with a wealth of very useful information.

The field trip was great. I liked all of the sites and have set up a radio show down here for Jan Spencer... would love to do same for some of the other site hosts and/or instructors if they are interested.

Actually, I'd give it a 4.5... it wasn't perfect, but it was very good. "


Anna G:  "It was a slow reveal and once I realized and accepted that, I was in for the ride.

They each had a unique facilitation style/personality and as a set were great. I particularly appreciated the presence of Mark Lakeman for his professionalism. I came to the class as a professional and also as a lifelong student of Permaculture who has been avoiding the chaotic scene of layman's Permaculture. Also, everyone who mentioned Masanobu Fukuoka called him Masuoba Fukuoka - what's up with that?

The site visits were all good. I was not blown away by any of them but the most unique site, and closest to a 5 rating was the biofuel gas station. I was glad to see someone take the Permaculture principles and apply them to a sector other than landscape. Why are all Permaculture sites messy and chaotic? Permaculture can be beautiful, too. This is not a complaint, its an observation on the practice of PC being primarily by layman (non-designers).

Our service project was an amazing transformation of a traditional garden into one that will be much more dense, productive, and enjoyable to be in. I thought there should have been a requirement in the packing list to bring closed-toe shoes and a requirement to wear them during the service project. But that's just me.

The food was very good and I really enjoyed the absence of dairy - I had been looking forward to that actually. I came home feeling excellent and wanted to keep that feeling, so I have been eating dairy-free since the course and still feel great. "


Gunjen M:  "All the information was easily accessible and vladislav did a great job in returning all email/phone inquiries in a timely manner! i always felt like i received all the information necessary to plan my trip.

Every instructor was a gem and were full of pertinent and in depth information. Jay Ma did a great job in teaching us the basics of permaculture, contouring of the land via an a-frame and the storytelling tradition he shared touched all of us in some profound way. Mark Lakeman was a great example of how to move on even when the city may work against you. His city repair projects and the way he showed us to integrate a neighborhood according to permi principles was inspiring and encouraging. It made me want to mobilize my own community. Max Meyers was, of course, a permaculture hero! His knowledge base was astounding and i wish we could spend more time learning more about earthworks, aquaponics and everything else from him. I definitely would've enjoyed more sessions from him, especially b/c he made the info so palatable and easy to digest. Samantha was sort of the glue that held everything together! It was wonderful to have a feminine energy along w/the social component integral to permaculture.

I enjoyed her movement sessions and her ability to connect w/everyone. Lastly (but most importantly), vladislav w/the help of Sarah... This course wouldn't have gone as smoothly as it did if it wasn't for the "rock" of the course! Sarah was so helpful in the kitchen! Vladislav really made sure that everything was seamless and consistent. I know samantha also had a lot to do w/the planning and organizing... Thanks to all of you for making it a fabulous experience!

I also must say that it helped that most of you (if not all of you) had a background in community organizing/activism, which I felt had a lot to do w/the course's inherent ability to move people. With my own background in activism and community work, I really feel we won't be able to make a change w/o being proactive. all the instructors are extremely proactive and that is a great gift and example to us all!

The design projects were the perfect way to end the course. Even though it took our group a little longer to begin the process due to differing of opinions and personalities, we eventually figured it out and came together at the end. It felt good to apply all that we learned into a project to help us feel comfortable w/the material and feel confident to apply the permi principles to our own projects at home or business.

The site visits were truly inspiring! It was great to see everything in action and how easy it is to apply permi principles in your own backyard on a minimal budget. I loved the biodiesel gas station! I never would've thought that that kind of gas station would be able to sustain itself monetarily. Not to mention, all the vegan options, kombucha, yummy coffee/teas and healthy snacks... In a gas station! Unheard of and so inspiring!

Kindred Spirits and aaron "the forest boy" rock! I loved the facilities, even though we stayed in our tent, everything was comfortable and easy to access. The forest surrounding the facilities were amazing! It was so wonderful to go for a mini-hike or meditate in the still of the trees. The only thing I felt was lacking was a more permaculture friendly facility, which I think would add to the course tremendously. If we had more hands-on experience and access to permi-systems in place i.e. grey water catchments, rainwater harvesters, a mini aquaponics station and etc., I feel that would've helped me a lot. Rather than only rebuilding/redesigning the garden, which was so awesome and I learned a lot from, i really would've loved to see some of these other systems i mentioned in action on the property. This only means that we should all come back and work on making Kindred Spirits more permi-friendly (and ADA friendly)!

Meals? FABULOUS! What can't we make using vegan, organic, soy free and wheat free foods?? The options are limitless and ever so tasty! I never thought that we could get into groups to co-create some of the most delicious foods ever! This portion exceeded my expectations!

It was all too fantastic! All things positive was included in this course and nothing negative. Everything was extremely organized and I never once felt confused about anything or felt like you guys weren't willing to work w/us on an issue. You all were so gracious and accommodating that I couldn't have asked for anything more. "Regenerative" designs is the perfect word to describe permaculture and the perfect word to describe what has occurred w/in me. I feel like a major "regeneration" has taken place in my life after taking this course and I take this responsibility very seriously. Permaculture to me is the equivalent to direct action activism, whether we know it or not. I plan to use permaculture as a way to mobilize people to change their lifestyles to influence the system unintentionally, rather than resist the system, which I've realized can cause an equal and opposite reaction to what we're working for.

One of the most precious things I think I've walked away with are the friendships we've established w/the instructors and most importantly w/the our fellow participants! It's so wonderful to feel that my partner and i now have a new blossoming community to call upon when necessary! I still feel like I have so much more to learn and feel this course has allowed me the ability to move forward in this direction. Thank you for all that you do! more power to you and to all of us!"


Katie H:  "Really grateful to get food like I would make for myself at home.
"


Linda P:  "I was attracted to the site via Facebook, as I saw useful, informative links that Vladislav shared via the RLI page. Links pertaining to permaculture and political affairs. Helps to learn a lot!

I would like to say that each and every one of the instructors were exceptional! I feel so grateful that we had such an amazing crew. Samantha Sweetwater has such zest for life and is so kind, among many other wonderful qualities. Jay Ma is so knowledgeable and in touch with nature; I learned about bird calls and sit spots and the art of tracking. Patterns of nature and stacking functions were very interesting topics as well. Oh I love when Mark Lakeman visited! I think that was the best 5-hour class ever!!!! So inspiring to learn about creating public space on the streets and empowered citizens. And Max... he was so awesome!! Wow he has so much wisdom and experience to share!! I was truly impressed and thrilled. Last but not least, I want to thank Vladislav for his wonderful leadership qualities. Always maintaining a positive attitude while being clear about setting boundaries, he makes a great leader. I feel grateful for the overall experience. :) :)

Beautiful land, lots of open space with the woods, overall very peaceful vibes! The meals were super!!! Feast every day! The team sure got creative. Too much quinoa, but everything was still yummy. :)"


Shanika M:  "The site visits were amazing. This really made this course even more amazing to visit the sites and meet such great individuals and see permaculture in action.

I liked that we did participate in this project to see some aspect of permaculture design implemented.

The meals were great. The way that the meals were prepared as a group was great for community building.

My overall experience is beyond words. I learned so much and meet soo many grat individuals. I had some really wonderful experinces and genuine connections.
"


Kathy P:  "All the invited permaculture experts were superlative, Jay, Max, Mar, Jan, Ravi, Ian and Sarah. Great job putting together this team.
"


Beau R:  "I did notice how opinion based the teachers felt about certain topics. I understand people have diverse backgrounds and karmic makeup so I felt it was extraordinary to gather such inspired information. Overall the teachers were on it and passionate about their specific fields of study.

Awesome to be able to connect with such a diverse and rounded group of people. I enjoyed it."


Sarah T:  "I recommend this course with unbridled reservation. I have experienced it twice, and have gotten to live in a community in a way I never had before. I got to connect with people in a beautiful, honest, supportive way. I learned things both times that have altered the way I live and steer my life. I got to explore my assumptions, examine the way I communicate, refine my goals and my self definition, and apply these lessons within the frame-work of permaculture and regenerative design methods that inspire new visions of possibility for the future. If you think you are interested in taking a giant leap forward in your life, please take this class! I hope I will get to see you there :)"


Tyagaraja W:  "Well what can I say. This school completely changed my life for the better. I was a 9 day intensive and I left the course feeling like I had all the tools and understanding necessary to go out into the world and produce positive change and keep the permaculture principles firmly in tact. I have researched and studied many permi organizations and the quality level of the instructors is absolutely unprecedented. It's not good enough to go on and make glowing comments about Regenerative Leadership Institute. It's an experience beyond words.

Right now the permaculture community is in need of reaching a broader base. There is no sense making such small movements when there is real need in the world. For most mainstream people these understandings are hard to come by, so all the more reason to get mainstream middle America on board. There needs to be a total shift, not a gradual one full of bureaucracy. Mainstream middle America is the center point of waste and consumption. And that audience is precisely the focus group that needs permaculture the most and I am happy to bring it to them. With the skills we gained at Regenerative Leadership Institute Permaculture Certification Course my wife and I have already made strides in our Urban Farming Settings, as well as connecting with schools and business, and they are all benefiting greatly from it and asking for more... None of this would have been possible without the organization, diligence and high quality course coming from Regenerative Leadership Institute.

I highly recommend this course above all in the nation and in the world. I have done the research, believe me there is nothing better. It may be different but not better, you won't find a more quality permaculture education it's simply not out there. We are also taking these skills to India and integrating with people there getting to know them and how permaculture might fit into their lives as they are without imposing our will on them. So just imaging, look at the reach. With just this one course my wife and I are equipped to spread the full spectrum of permaculture design and principles as far as our minds and hearts are willing to understand."


Golriz G:  "One of the most inspiring , grounding, loving , peaceful yet revolutionary group of people i have ever met in my entire life .. The inspiration and information i learned and shared within the Regenerative Leadership Institute education is something i can revisit any time in my life and feel more confident about my own path anytime.
Highly recommended!"


Donna C:  "I loved the instructors, the content was excellent, the pace was fast, the community of students cooperating and cooking and sharing info was phenomenal. The circles where we were able to make a short thank you comment each day and the gathering as a group was inclusive and helped everyone integrate. I took notes and had the Big Book(not necessary for the class but nice for a reference afterward.)

The grounds where we stayed were very nice. This class like all experiences is a good deal what you put in and what you make of it. It was intense trying to get all the info covered. But doable. I would have liked a course outline the first day of class. The project at the end was stressful to me but only because I wanted to have a great project. Our group had some setbacks but Vlad was very gracious and not critical. The reason for the project is to accomplish it, to learn and understand not to be an expert.

So chill, the content and teachers were excellent. The instructors were down to earth and very approachable. I highly recommend going. Permaculture is a way of living that is regenerative and sharing and caring for ourselves and our environment. The more you practice the more you learn. Wherever I go I look at every landscape with a very different and much better understanding of what it can be for all of us as we cooperate and understand each other and our planet. The people in the class and teachers are resources you can always draw on. Decide to go, be open, friendly and willing and you'll love it."


Elsie G:  "OK, so Slav doesn't always come across as the warmest, fuzziest person on the planet. I know that's what a lot of people are looking for, but get over it. I'm sure Einstein, Galileo and Freud weren't thought of as the most social people on the planet either. Slav's thinking process will often seem radically different to you, but he's truly trying to improve the world with these courses. Furthermore, this course (17-day permaculture design certification course) isn't for wimps. In order to keep it affordable (in comparison to other courses), it is bare-bones, rigorous and difficult. Challenge yourself, for Pete's sake!

This course packs a lot of information and activities into a short time frame - it's kind of like permaculture boot camp. You're going to eat clean, not get a ton of sleep (unless you're one of those lucky folks who can sleep anywhere) and you're going to stuff your head with great ideas. The instructors for the course are really wonderful, especially Larry Korn. What I found most surprising about this course was the diversity of the other students. I was surprised at the varying backgrounds of the folks who showed up, and that variety really lent to the amount of learning that went on in the course.

This course is as much about people as it is about plants - a true testament to the fact that no (wo)man is an island. The course was held on a lovely property in Eugene, OR, and there was a coffee kiosk right up the street, which saved me from going crazy! Be aware that Eugene in April can be rainy and cold - I attended the course in April 2011. As for Slav's business policies... if you've ever owned a business, you know how important it is to protect your investment. He does lay out the rules in black & white - we just all take for granted that rules are flexible.

If you want to learn a lot and open your mind to new concepts, this course is for you. Don't be afraid to ask questions up front so you'll be prepared with all the gear you need."


Sonya S:  "I completed a Permaculture Design Certificate course through Regenerative Leadership Institute in August 2012. It was, in every respect, an outstanding educational experience.

The course was located at the site of a spiritual retreat center in Eugene, OR. Classes were held in a lovely, light-filled yurt, which was very conducive to learning. It was a very intensive course, with the entire standard content of the PDC, and much more, completed in only 9 days. The course was facilitated by company founder and CEO Vladislav Davidzon and co-facilitated by Samantha Sweetwater, founder of Dancing Freedom. Guest teachers were pioneers in their fields and included Jay Ma of Living Mandala; Max Meyers of Nor Cal Aquaponics; and Mark Lakeman of City Repair. Guest hosts for site visits included organic farmer and founder of the US organic industry, Harry Macormack; the Dharmalaya intentional living community; Jan Spencer of The Suburban Permaculture Project; and Sequential Biofuels.

I found Regenerative Leadership Institute to be very professional and ethical from first contact. The company's website is very comprehensive and answered almost all my questions in advance, and the few additional questions I did have were promptly responded to via email. As a result, I was well-prepared for my camping accommodation, and very comfortable (dormitory accommodation was available for those who preferred not to camp, and showers and electricity were available for all). The vegan meals provided were, on the whole, varied and delicious. Each day was extremely well organized, with an excellent balance between classroom learning; practical projects, such as implementing a mandala garden design; and site visits, such as to the sites described above.

Without a doubt, the absolute best aspect of the course was the quality of the facilitators and instructors. Regenerative Leadership Institute is to be commended for assembling such a stellar group of teachers. They all shared equally of their experience and passion, and I feel extremely lucky to have had the opportunity to learn from them. The site visit hosts, too, were only to willing to share their wisdom. I can honestly say that I learned more in my 9-day course with Regenerative Leadership Institute than in any comparative educational environment I have experienced. I have a degree and a graduate diploma and have attended a multitude of workshops etc. over the years and I do not make that statement lightly.

With almost 30 people, we were a large group, but in such a positive learning environment, friendships were formed that will last a lifetime. A group Facebook page was established and is very active. I have also found Mr. Davidzon to be extremely willing to provide ongoing support to graduates, in the form of advice, ideas, and general encouragement.

I did a considerable amount of research on the various options available to me before I committed to the Regenerative Leadership Institute course. I consider the course to have been exceptional value for money (scholarships are available for those in need, too). I left the course feeling fully empowered to put my new learning into practice, which is, of course, the ultimate test of whether or not a particular learning institute is worth the time and money you're investing in it. If you're considering a PDC, I believe you couldn't do better than Regenerative Leadership Institute."


Craig C:  "Overall, I'm really happy with it. Great information at half the cost of other courses. I like the emphasis on the social component--we don't design in a vacuum, especially with the entire planet in deep environmental crisis--and I appreciate the values and the focus on eco-justice. Saundra has been skillful, informative, patient, organized, and very clear. Her humaneness, values, and heart also come through clearly. I could take an entire course from her, although I'm glad we're getting a variety of viewpoints from different instructors."


Dianna H:  "The permaculture workshop that you hosted in August allowed me access to a vast world of important work going on and has inspired me to spend most of my waking hours since then learning more.

Previous to taking your course, I'd kept myself so busy with distant work projects (at sea) and vigorous vacations (cycling) that I hadn't slowed down enough to see that people are 1) doing important work and 2) creating immense joy... in their own backyards.

Immediately after taking your course, I knew that I wanted more education and more hands on experience. Having months free to do as I wished (due to having just finished a longer than normal work assignment overseas), I signed up for:

1) Small acreage stewardship
2) Watershed stewardship
3) Master Gardener class (which is a stretch for someone who's never taken responsibility for much more than one orchid at a time......;) - all being taught in Vancouver, WA - a place that I decided to go RVing simply because of these courses - mostly the small acreage stewardship.

...hadn't even heard the word 'tilth' prior to taking your permaculture course. Suddenly Washington and Oregon Tilth became my favorite website - and is where I learned of these courses.

I credit you, your permaculture course, your enthusiastic and inspiring staff - paid and intern, and the wide range of talented speakers that you managed to corral for awakening me to this new world (for me) and important work."


Lynn F:  "This was a life-changing program for me, and solidified my interest in creating my life and work around and through permaculture principles. I would take it again in a heartbeat.

I absolutely loved the focus on social permaculture, and on the integration of ecological, social, and spiritual concepts. I'm a scientist by training, and I keep a very open mind. I came in open to learn, share, connect, and grow, and that's what I got.

I may be biased because my teachers were so fantastic - Larry Korn (disciple of Masanobu Fukuoka and incredibly friendly and funny), Joanna Macy (a true goddess of connecting with nature), Samantha Sweetwater (goddess of embodied dance), Kevin Danaher (Green America). As far as I know, Samantha still teaches the program.

If you're looking for a lot of hands-on work, this isn't the program for you. Regenerative Leadership Institute is focused on building the foundations of harmonious communal living, as well as true social transformation, and thus places greater emphasis on social permaculture and invisible structures (i.e. social organization), rather than the practical garden and farmwork. In my personal opinion, the work of getting along with other humans in a co-creative process is more challenging than implementing permaculture farming concepts. This is evidenced by the struggles of working on group projects for the final permaculture design project.

There is a spiritual element to successful community living, and so there is daily meditation and gratitude, and probably some other exercises that will push your buttons and boundaries, and make you a bit uncomfortable. Discomfort is the source of personal growth and greater harmony in life - take it as an opportunity to learn and observe more deeply. Some may not enjoy this aspect of Vlad's program, but if you keep an open mind, it may serve you more deeply than you realize.

It's best to come into this program with an open mind, an excitement for personal transformation and new ideas (beyond gardening principles).

Regenerative Leadership Institute's vision is broad on a global scale, and goes beyond sustainability in scientific terms. It is more people-focused. Without people working together in harmony (as much as possible), it is literally impossible to build the sustainable, thriving world we wish to see.

It is ill advised to come into this program thinking you know everything about what it takes to create social change and practice permaculture.

Confused? Ask questions!

Highly highly highly recommended."


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