After a very quiet winter period when we chose not to have guests whilst we prepared for receiving a big group of students here in 8thLife, things got very, very busy ...
At the beginning of March we had a visit from a group of adult education students who wanted to practice their English whilst visiting the project, so we organized for each of the Interns to explain one point of a tour of the place that we designed especially for them.
We really enjoyed the day with them all, this is the group photo for the day:
This was the tour programme we designed:
2) Gardens see www.bit.ly/RationalFood (Nicola)
3) Nurseries (Tagasaste project) (Luca)
4) Sheep Holistic Grazing, see www.bit.ly/AllanSavory (Stella & Jose)
5) Compost Toilet (+ Iponomea propagation) (Alejandra)
6) Pens for Pigs & Sheep (Csilla)
7) Chicken House for chicken tractor system (Zuzanna)
8) Solar Shower (Thomas)
9) Camping PeDreTa project, https://pedretea.wordpress.com (Stella & Jose)
10) Workshop (Mattis)
(the names in brackets are the people who were stationed at those points to tell them about the various designs there - in their best English :) We gave them a leaflet with the map & these links so they could research more about each topic.
Click on picture below to see where the points of the tour are:
This means that the life-enhancing (& sometimes life-changing) action-learning experiences we have gotten better & better at providing over some 20+ years of experience are now also available to young people who wouldn't otherwise have been able to afford them.
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Some comments about the Internship programme from recent students:
One good thing is online interface, flexible studying (you can do it in your own time) - Nico
I really appreciate the freedom that i have here and that i have been trusted in this learning process. - Mattis
I like that we can take the course anytime, & that we can learn many thing we have never done before. - Zuzana
What I like is also the flexibility, the possibility to learn from the others as well (interactive groups learning). - Thomas
The online course has the advantages of no deadline, being flexible. - Csilla
What I like is that we choose how much we want to get involved, its our decision and we can adapt it to our needs. - Alejandra
But Chris had quite a lot of permaculture experience, was already in Tenerife and contacted us saying that he runs a mushroom ecobusiness & wanted to bring us mushroom spawn - which is a kind of 'offer you can't refuse' if you are a permi ...
>> an article for his personal blog or the one directed at people interested in permaculture in Finland
>> and also this newsletter for us.
I brought some Shitake sawdust spawn from Finland which we inoculated on chestnut logs. I visited a Shitake company called Polar Shitake just one week before I left. I just took some of their blocks of sawdust which already once fruited and used that as a spawn. I did not have to produce the spawn at my lab which saved me a lot of time.
Polar Shitake produces 4000kg of Shiitake each week & most of their shrooms goes to export central europe.
They practice Integral Permaculture based on the online manual. They have also a very cool Intensive grazing experiments with sheep which is really important for climate change & soil repair.
A few permaculture collegues started to re-design the permaculture manual back in 2004 which is now available in two languages.
I decided to travel to La Palma on the canary Islands where the 8thLife Ecovillage project is located.
< Zuzana from Slovakia is an International Management graduate on a one year EVS programme here focused on creating her own eco-business.
Alejandra from Spain is a Social Studies & Anthropology graduate, here on a 2 month internship. They are both working on improving the chicken-house (building a small retention-wall, below), one of their design projects.
The good thing about these internships is that you can start you own practical design project on the first day and study the theoretical part of the course before arriving on the farm.
<< The chicken-house is the heart of a big chicken-tractor system still under construction, which comprises 6 large garden terraces connected by a long corridor to each other.
Some 40 chickens will be able to enter one garden per month in the mornings, before being let out onto the forest garden areas in the afternoons.
Judit & Rosa choosing trees to plant in the forest gardens.
Michal reinforcing the structure of the outdoor kitchen.