Win a copy of Social Forestry Book - join us this week with Tomi Hazel Vaarde in the Woodland forum!

Monica Truong

+ Follow
since Jul 12, 2022
Monica likes ...
homeschooling forest garden books
Merit badge: bb list bbv list
Forum Moderator
Monica Truong currently moderates these forums:
I'm afraid permaculture is only my second passion. My massively transformative purpose is to reimagine education. I believe our education system is not serving our children or preparing them for the future. In 2017, I pulled my daughter out of school. In our second year of homeschooling, I helped to co-create a non-profit, Chinook Free Learners, and facilitated the students learning there for two years. It was a space inspired by the Sudbury model and used Agile Learning Center tools. I then founded a learning pod, Calgary Colearning Community (CCC) in September 2020. I failed in my bid for CBE school board trustee in the fall of 2021, but I still hope that I can nudge public education into the future. So, with the help of others, I am applying for a charter school to be called, the Calgary Charter for Self-Directed Education. In the meantime, I am running a space, The Dandelion Community Center in the Calgary Beltline, where learning pods can meet to run their programs. That space also has a co-working space so that busy professionals can homeschool their kids and participate in co-mmunity events/classes, so that 'school' is not isolated from life and learning is not just for kids, but for everyone! The pod that I am running in the space is called the F.H.R.E.E Learning Pod (Full Human Rights Education Experience). My wish is for every child to get the best education possible, in order to prepare them for a future that is uncertain, but full of possibilities!
For More
Trochu, near Calgary, Canada
Apples and Likes
Total received
In last 30 days
Total given
Total received
Received in last 30 days
Total given
Given in last 30 days
Forums and Threads
Scavenger Hunt
expand Pollinator Scavenger Hunt
expand Pioneer Scavenger Hunt
expand First Scavenger Hunt Green check

Recent posts by Monica Truong

Text courtesy of Synergetic Press
Social Forestry: Tending the Land as People of Place is a must-have for anyone who wants a reciprocating relationship with their communities, themselves, and most importantly their awe-inspiring forests and landscapes.

Social Forestry connects villages and communities to their land and adjoining bodies of water. Concepts include forest management, protection, and regeneration of deforested lands with the objective of improving the rural, environmental, and social development. Through ecological assessment, carbon sequestration, and generating wildcrafts, people re-establish their wonder in the woods.

Author Tomi Hazel Vaarde, collaborator of Siskiyou Permaculture, uses poetry,  photographs, drawings, and data to outline philosophies and concepts of Social Forestry. By weaving culturally sensitive stories, myths, and lessons from a range of customs and traditions including North American Indigenous communities and Vaarde’s own Quaker upbringing, Vaarde explores how holistic land and community management approaches can facilitate resolution of some of our most dire local and global crises. The writer’s work is critical to overcoming eco-grief while instilling necessary changes to the West Coast landscape for fire mitigation and restoration of complex forest systems for generations to come.

Many Indigenous peoples have learned regenerative management by living for generations in and with a sense of place, but few examples of whole-system planning and participation are evident in modern society. Climate adaptation, human survival, and the maintenance of biodiversity that supports life on Earth require radical, back-to-the-roots grounding and intentional dedication. Social Forestry helps readers remember the ways of the wild while implementing local food production, collaboration with conservation efforts, forest management, and stabilization of headwaters to build resilience for the long term. To live in harmony with our surroundings, we need to re-skill, always remembering those who came before us and acting in ways that honor traditional wisdom of people and place.


Inside this luminous guide, you will find practical placemaking advice, ancient lore, and a humor that shimmers. Receive these generous offerings—a lifetime of wisdom from an elder, a teacher of permaculture, and radical changemaker like no other—and you will be transformed. Together we listen to the earth, we understand where we belong, and we find our way home again.

—Helena Norberg-Hodge, Director of Local Futures and author of Ancient Futures: Learning from Ladakh

Social Forestry by Tomi Hazel Vaarde is a book of hope. Hazel shows how our relationship with the Earth and her forests does not have to be an extractive one leading to destruction. Through cooperating together we can regenerate our forests and rewild ourselves and the land, growing hope as ecosystems recover while empires crumble.

—Vandana Shiva, PhD, author of Agroecology and Regenerative Agriculture: Sustainable Solutions for Hunger, Poverty, and Climate Change

About the author:

Hazel is a long time resident of the Southern Oregon/Mount Shasta bioregion, first settling there in the early 1970’s. They are currently focused on Social Forestry, restoring Oak/Pine Savannah, fuel hazard management, wildcrafting, wildlife conservation, and desert forest water management.

They have been advising farms, stewarding forests, and teaching Environmental Sciences for more than fifty years.
After having earned degrees in Forestry and Systematic Botany from Syracuse University and SUNY College of Forestry in 1969, Hazel taught Wild Edible Plants and Woods-lore at Laney College in Oakland, California in the early 1970’s. After helping Bill Mollison teach the first Permaculture Design Course at Evergreen State College in 1982, they have been instrumental in teaching and spreading Permaculture practices ever since.

Hazel has taught dozens of Permaculture courses over the last 37 years, primarily in Southern Oregon and Northern California. These include the PDC, Permaculture Teachers Training, and advanced courses in Optical Surveying, Social Forestry, and Farm Planning. They were a frequent guest instructor for Toby Hemenway Permaculture design courses offered in the Northwest.

Published by Synergetic Press
456 pages

Where to get it?
Here on Permies with a special discount
Synergetic Press

44 minutes ago
I'm most looking forward to the rocket heater for the sauna! What's about you?

15 hours ago
699 amazing people have backed the Kickstarter!
19 hours ago
Yes, that is correct. It will be free for everyone who backed the Kickstarter by Sept 22 at 2pm MT,  a few weeks after the campaign ends.
22 hours ago
So awesome!! Almost at $20, 000!! Permie folks have been amazingly supportive!
23 hours ago
Permaculture Technology Jamboree
(Previously known as the Appropriate Technology Course)

Buy NOW for Super Early Bird pricing (only available until September 23, 2023!!)

July 1st - 12th, 2024

click here for ticket prices

This event has multiple purposes:
  • Move permaculture technology forward: Collaboration, experimentation and innovation in the field of permaculture!
  • eprovides experiences for people new to permaculture technology
  • building homesteading skills
  • To gain hands on experience with various technologies
  • Community and conversation with people who are bonkers about permaculture!

  • Our Jamboree Format:
    Attendees can wander throughout the labs to see all of the innovative permaculture projects, and participate or observe as much or as little as they like. The instructors will see a project to completion either with or without help.

    60+ Permaculture Technology Projects!

    Below are some of the proposed projects for 2023!


  • Build a Rocket Oven for an Outdoor Kitchen
  • Build a Rocket that Generates Electricity


  • Cob Sinks and Showers
  • Insulation
  • Build a Yurt
  • Slab Trees Freehand with a Chainsaw, and Build a Roundwood Deck
  • Natural Plasters & Paint
  • Sheep Wool Insulation
  • Felted Walls for Insulating a Space


  • Make Window Quilts
  • Weave a Sun-Shade from Natural Fibers
  • Sew and Stuff a Straw Tick Mattress
  • Weaving a Rug or Blanket
  • & More!


  • Preserve a Million Calories
  • Store food for winter without electricity (6 ways)
  • Stock a root cellar for 20 people for the year
  • Make Pottery from Clay Harvest on Site
  • Build a Hugel and Plant it!

  • TECH:

  • Add Permanent Solar to a Tiny House
  • Electric Tractor Hayride Tour
  • Heating Water with the Sun without Needing Winterizing
  • Install a
  • Fire up the Solar Glass
  • & More!


  • Build a Log Picnic Table & Bench
  • Build Log Bunk Beds
  • Build a Skiddable Bodger Shed
  • Build a Roundwood staircase
  • Build a Three Log Bench
  • & More!

  • BEES:

  • Build a Few Hives
  • Build a Swarm Trap
  • Extract Honey
  • Build a Log Beehive Shelter
  • Build a Log Style Beehive
  • & More!


  • Install a Passive Garden Heater
  • Build a Holzer Root Cellar in a Day
  • Natural swimming pool

  • SKIP:

  • A track dedicated to the "Skills to Inherit Property" program
  • Knock out a bunch of BBs with the help of PEP1 certified instructors
  • Basic Birdhouse
  • Wood Burned Signs
  • Make a Kindling Cracker
  • Tool Handle
  • & More!


  • Make Seed Balls
  • Plant a Living Fence
  • Foraging
  • Make Twine
  • Bake Bread in a Rocket Oven
  • Make wax Cloths / Lunch Kit / Jar cover
  • Create Public Art
  • & More!


  • Build a Drystack Moongate
  • Create Drystack Stairs
  • A Drystack Wall to Protect a Fruit Tree

  • Daily Schedule

    7:00am – breakfast
    8:00am – summary of the day
    8:30am – session 1
    10:00am – session 2
    noon – lunch
    1:00pm – session 3
    3:00pm – session 4
    5:00pm – cleanup
    6:00pm – dinner
    7:00pm – evening presentations
    9:30pm to 6:00am – quiet time

    Arrival: Day Zero (June 30th - the day before the beginning of the event) Register and get settled in.
    airport pickups: 10am to 5pm
    arrival by car: 1pm to 5pm


    One hour in and we are 2/3 of the way there, folks! With 253 backers!!
    1 day ago

    Low Tech Laboratory Movie #2

    Our kickback program is VERY generous!  And people seem to like Kickstarters.  And google and the internet seem to like Kickstarter.  (i.e. repeat promotional mentions, with good text and images, yield high conversion and profit!)

       20% for $500 to $10,000

       30% for $10,000 or more

    * note, if you bring in $11,111, then you get 30% on the whole amount (not 20% on the first $10,000).  So $3333.

    Reply to this thread if you want a referral code.

    How does it work?


    Post here

    You reply to this thread to say you want a referral link.


    Get your referral link

    We generate a unique link for you, and leave it in a "note" on the bottom of your reply. This link will track any pledges made from those you refer, and we will contact you to pay out your kickback earnings once all the coin comes in.


    Share with the world

    You share your referral link far and wide, with your own words of enthusiasm, or some of the ones we've already crafted below. Grab some images to catch people's eyes, too! We will keep adding more as we make them.

    Some ideas of places to share:
        - local mailing lists
        - your own mailing list
        - Facebook pages/groups
        - twitter
        - pinterest, instagram, youtube ... lots of other social media stuff
        - your own website
        - your own podcast
        - forums
        - your current or previous kickstarter supporters
        - your client/customer list
        - the resources of somebody you know and you can split the pot!
        - other creative places you come up with


    - Open with something really captivating. Think about what excited you about these amazing permaculture innovations, and what problems they solve for people. Got a lot of friends who are into fibre arts? Then you probably know how expensive spinning wheels are. Say "Learn to DIY your own spinning wheel!" or "I'm going to make my own spinning wheel for free!" and then follow with a brief explanation of the Kickstarter, what excites you about it, maybe how you found out about permies and why you love it here. Throw in your ref link, and share with the masses.

    - Share directly with people you know would love it. Think about who you know who's into natural building, permaculture design, fibre arts, natural medicine, or ceramics. Remember that friend who keeps saying they want to get into beekeeping? Or your hip pal who really wants a hottub up at the cottage? Send them a message. They're wayyyyy more likely to back the project if you put it right in their face, and they'll also be delighted that you thought of them and remember their interests. Plus now you have an excuse to chat and catch up. Everybody wins!

    - Mention it multiple times. Our experience is that mentioning it once is like not mentioning it at all, and mentioning it twelve times if like mentioning it twice. It takes a lot to get it to enter people's consciousness. The Kickstarter is running for a whole month. Mention it at least once a week. If people see how excited you are about it, enough that you're talking about it all the time, they will be more likely to check it out, and those on the fence will have more opportunity to revaluate and make a pledge.

    - Use images!

    Here's the earlybird rewards image:

    Or just the earlybird title:

    The original, but with brighter letters:

    If you're a non-profit organization (or even if you're not) and use kickback codes, you could share this project and say something like "these guys have agreed to give us a percentage of every pledge that supports through this link!"

    To make it easy, we wrote some copy/pastable texts for you to use lickity-splickity. Just paste your referral link in the space labeled (ref code):

    Get ready to witness the next chapter in DIY permaculture innovation that will leave you awestruck and ready to change the world. The Low Tech Laboratory Movie is back, and we need your support to bring this incredible sequel to life!  Back the Low Tech Laboratory Movie 2! (ref code)

    Be a part of this low-tech journey as we capture the essence of innovation, resilience, and sustainable living. With your backing, we'll continue to showcase permaculture pioneers who are pushing the boundaries of what's possible, turning simple concepts into extraordinary realities.  Back the Low Tech Laboratory Movie 2 today! (ref code)

    Join us on a journey to reshape the future with eco-friendly, ingenious permaculture technology. The original movie was just the beginning, and now we're taking it to the next level. From root cellars that level up food preservation to natural mycelium insulation that redefines sustainability, this sequel is packed with groundbreaking ideas that will inspire and empower.
    Back the Low Tech Laboratory Movie 2! (ref code)

    Help us make the Low Tech Laboratory Movie Sequel a reality. By joining our Kickstarter campaign, you're not just supporting a film – you're supporting a movement that seeks to redefine the way we interact with our environment. Together, we can propel these incredible DIY permaculture technologies into the spotlight, inspiring communities to adopt more sustainable practices.

    Back us now and unlock a treasure trove of permaculture rewards! From exclusive behind-the-scenes content to practical guides that put these innovative concepts into your hands, our backers will receive a plethora of homesteading and permaculture goodies.

    It's time to take action, to be a part of a transformative journey that will echo for generations. Join us in backing the Low Tech Laboratory Movie sequel and be a catalyst for change. Together, we can turn subsistence into luxuriance and shape a world that thrives on sustainable ingenuity.

    Back the sequel that will revolutionize permaculture – back the Low Tech Laboratory Movie 2 now! (Ref code)

    1 day ago
    15 minutes in and we are already more than 1/3 funded! Yippee!! 30 minutes. I can't math.
    1 day ago
    Less than 24 hours before launch!! So exciting and nerve-wracking.
    2 days ago