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Sustainable Development Training Takes a Village

School of Integrated Living certified to offer UNESCO-recognized Ecovillage Design Education credential by Gaia Education

School of Integrated Living (SOIL) has been certified by Gaia Education to provide the Ecovillage Design Education credential through its Permaculture and Ecovillage Immersion at Earthaven Ecovillage, June 10–August 11. SOIL is now one of only two organizations in the US to offer this internationally recognized certificate, part of the UNESCO Global Action Programme on Education for Sustainable Development.

Participants in an Ecovillage Design Education program study four core dimensions of sustainability—social, worldview, ecological, and economic—through hands-on exploration of a sustainable settlement. This training prepares students with the theoretical knowledge and practical skills to design societies that use energy more efficiently, distribute wealth more fairly, and produce less waste.

“The program helps passionate people understand their impact on society and forge real connections with themselves and others,” says SOIL co-founder Lee Walker Warren. “People who are deeply engaged in their local and global communities make the biggest impact, both on other individuals and the planet.”

UNESCO has designated Ecovillage Design Education as an important component in accelerating sustainable solutions at the local level. Gaia Education, a Key Partner of the UNESCO Global Action Programme on Education for Sustainable Development, certifies organizations across the world that offer training in support of this goal.

Upon completion of SOIL’s Permaculture and Ecovillage Immersion, students will receive both an Ecovillage Design Education Certificate and a Permaculture Design Certificate that matches and exceeds the standard curriculum content laid out by the Permaculture Institute of North America. More information is available at www.schoolofintegratedliving.org/programs/permaculture-and-ecovillage-immersion/ or from SOIL Director NikiAnne Feinberg at nikianne@schoolofintegratedliving.org.

School of Integrated Living (SOIL) inspires people to live responsible and creative lives by providing experiential education in integrated living and regenerative systems. Its programs educate empowered, skilled, and conscious leaders dedicated to creating radical change and healthy reciprocal relationships.

SOIL has provided whole-life education to over 500 students since its founding in 2013. In addition to offering its own classes, the school has partnered with the College of Charleston, Coastal Carolina University, and Furman University to give a real-world complement to college courses. Work by SOIL instructors has been featured in Permaculture, Home Power, and Mountain Xpress.

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