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Permaculture Apprenticeship at Terra Alta Portugal | June 2019

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Location: Portugal
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Our 4-week Permaculture Apprenticeship Program is geared at anyone looking to fully experience and be a part of a well-developed permaculture project that's part of the Global Ecovillage Network, surrounded by the powerful land and ocean of the Sintra bioregion. There are no prerequisites needed (PDC not required) to join. As the Apprenticeship is experience-based, participants should be eager to farm and be an active part of community living.

Apprentices will learn about farming, food forestry, appropriate technology, natural building, and more (see apprenticeship topics below). Our vision for participants is that through the immersive experience of managing the site on a day-to-day basis, engaging with and implementing new projects, they will gain a comprehensive grasp of permaculture and, with the guidance of its principles, be able to confidently move forward in their pursuits, whether it be transitioning into farming or taking on a yet-to-be-discovered role in the Permaculture movement. In order to facilitate this move, we mentor participants through their journey here as well as offer three individual mentoring sessions to support participants in implementing their own projects.

Guided by certified Permaculture teacher Pedro Valdjiu and other program facilitators and crew members, comprising bio-intensive farmers, market gardeners, and foresters, participants will have a council of experts with a plethora of knowledge at their fingertips. Various topics such as permaculture ethics will be discussed in detail in a classroom setting with dynamic social permaculture facilitation. Through this extended and diverse experience, we aim to empower individuals through instilling confidence in implementing regenerative design techniques and ultimately, positively impacting our current world situation.

We will have six contact hours per day. On the days that courses aren’t happening, there will be ample time for beach exploration and social interaction.

Program Details
Dates: June 1-30, 2019
Location: Terra Alta, Sintra, Portugal
Apprenticeship fee:*
Regular - 800 euros
Early bird - 725 euros (till March 15, 2019)
*This includes food and camping
Registration Fee - 150 Euros**
**The registration fee is equal to a deposit. This amount is part of the apprenticeship fee and not extra, so you are just required to pay the balance when you arrive. We have a refund policy (please read our FAQ page).

The campsite is a semi-wild area where we have created level terraces among the trees, mushrooms, and stones for people to pitch their tents out of view from the rest of the garden. Apprentices will be responsible for preparing food which includes three vegetarian meals per day, with ingredients sourced from our gardens or from local organic producers. If you are celiac, gluten intolerant, or vegan please inform us in the "Anything we should know?" field of the registration form and we provide a special menu for you.

Reserve your spot by visiting the program page here.

Apprenticeship Topics
  • Learning the Principles and Ethics of permaculture
  • Orientation to Terra Alta as home and land resource system
  • Appropriate technology and sustainable energy systems
  • Community and social tools for project and personal development
  • Regenerative landscape design
  • Composting and earthworks
  • Bio-Intensive techniques for kitchen and market gardening
  • Zero Waste Strategies and Bio Gas
  • Building with natural materials​
  • Food preservation, fermentation​
  • Essential marketing tools for permaculture businesses
  • Digital literacy and the future of the permaculture movement
  • Building your personal brand within the field of Permaculture

  • Learning Environment
    We treat Terra Alta's off-the-grid site as a teacher in its own right as participants get to experience Permaculture daily, learning from our existing projects and being part of our intentional community. This hands-on, holistic learning environment is complemented by the collaborative methods of hosting we use. We employ Open Space Technology as this cooperative, solution-oriented technique effectively demonstrates the design principle "integrate rather than segregate" as apprentices co-create solutions based on in situ challenges they identify together, utilizing everyone's unique knowledge. Facilitators also use the World Cafe (WC) method to host a discussion of course topics. WC helps identify what the collective thought surrounding key issues are by encouraging participants to find patterns and connections among their shared experiences, putting into practice the "observe and interact" principle of Permaculture design. Other learning methods include: action learning, field trips, lecture, walk and talk, games, movies, group work, think and listen, and participatory art.

    Suited for
  • Project developers
  • Students looking for practical experience and holistic perspective
  • Permaculture Designers, artists, architects, landscapers
  • Small landholders
  • Ecologists and Restoration Worker
  • Activist
  • Designers
  • Landscape architects
  • Land developers
  • Artists
  • Farmers
  • Urban Gardeners
  • NGO-members
  • Community members
  • People in urban and settlement planning
  • Social workers
  • Environmental educators
  • School teachers
  • People looking for nature connection

  • For more information including full list of course facilitators, visit the apprenticeship page: https://www.terralta.org/permaculture-apprenticeship

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