Time for a new look! T-shirt contest!!! The PAN Board is launching a T-shirt contest and will be collecting submissions until February 10th (2018). Once all of the entries have been received we will ask for members to vote on the design they think reflects the organization most. If we use your design you will receive a one year membership to PAN and a shirt! We are excited to see what the talented designers in this community come up with! Send your submission to us via email.
PAN hosted its annual board, teachers and organizer’s retreat at the Omega Institute from October 8-11, 2017. This year those in attendance were the PAN board and a small, intimate group of committed network organizers from New York City to Boston. For this year’s retreat we chose to place some stronger focus on “unconferencing” which felt like a tremendous success. We’ve been hosting these retreats at Omega for about five years, and usually we have a full agenda, and between the facilitation and hosting, it doesn’t always feel like a retreat for some of us. This year we planned on plenty of unstructured time to hang out, network and play.
The work time that we put in was productive and we unveiled the standards pledge for feedback, planned for greater collaboration with PINA, reviewed and brainstormed the work that PAN does, came up with a work plan and a list of deliverables for 2018 and asked for feedback from members about benefits we could provide to the network. Your membership dues goes to support the work of PAN so that we can make our work freely available to the network and the world. The voluntary teaching pledge of standards will be an important document that will help aspiring new teachers in their workshop and course organizing efforts.
While the scheduled work times were productive, the “unconferencing” also proved to be very beneficial. We spontaneously decided to do a “show and tell” and give each other a profile of the work that we do in the world. We heard about landscape design and planning, a year-round K-12 grassroots educational program in New York City, and graduate level work defining a rubric for environmental services that can be incorporated into any design discipline.
The mealtimes at Omega were awesome as usual, with a fantastic buffet of local organic food, orange juice on tap and lots of tea. We were able to enjoy many of the amenities of Omega this year in a more laid back manner as well. Those included yoga, tai chi and meditation; an evening camp fire, hiking and boating; and of course the sauna and nap times. Jesse, an avid mixed martial arts fan, even fulfilled a dream of his by introducing a group of very progressive and open-minded permies to the sport on the big screen display we had in our meeting room.
For 2018 PAN is looking forward to organizing less conventions of our own, and we are looking forward to piggy-backing on existing events similar in focus. We are planning on developing a series of webinars that are focused on topics that will benefit our members in the work they do in the world. We are considering hosting the regional Northeast Permaculture Convergence (NEPC) in Maine in the summer of 2018, and we are looking forward to hosting you there! Once again, thanks for all the work you do in the world and thank you for your support of PAN!
PAN has heard for a few years now that what the northeast network needs is a training in how to make our permaculture courses and events more relevant to communities of color. As it stands now, the demographics of our network are fairly homogeneous, and that is understandably how the permaculture movement has started. PAN is offering this professional development opportunity in service to that larger goal of making our work more relevant to a diversity of communities.
We are very excited that Relational Uprising will be facilitating the diversity training at the beautiful Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, NY. Here’s a bit more about them:
“Relational Uprising is a training and coaching project that supports activists, organizers, movement builders and changemakers from diverse fields to build healthy, interdependent, relational culture. We believe it is time for a new era of social change work in which we bring an intentionally humanizing, relational culture to our lives, organizations and movements. It presents a nuanced approach to issues of identity, intersectionality, and privilege using an embodied, relational practice of narrative and somatic movement.
The Culture of Radical Engagement (CRE) framework is based on an integration of social capital research, social neuroscience, radical relational theory, community organizing, and somatic education. It presents a nuanced approach to issues of identity, intersectionality, and privilege using an embodied, relational practice of narrative and movement. Training modules include: Stories of Separation, Stories of Connection, Ecology + Diversity, Support for Conflict Resolution. Originally incubated at The Relational Center from 2012-2015, Relational Uprising is now its own training and group facilitation project for changemaking communities.”
This training, all by itself, has a degree of importance, but so do the other facets of this retreat:
Day 1: Diversity Training with Relational Uprising
Day 2: Developing Community Derived Standards of Quality in Permaculture Education
Day 3: Peer to peer module and curriculum exchanges
WHEN: Sunday October 16th (afternoon arrival / dinner / opening greeting Sunday eve) through Wednesday October 19th (am closing session followed by lunch and departure)
WHO: Up to 30 individuals from our region (NJ/PA up through Eastern Canada) who self-identify as permaculture teachers and organizers who derive some portion of their livelihood from the design and delivery of permaculture educational events.
COST: $200-300 per person. Pay according to your means. OMEGA is graciously subsidizing the cost in solidarity with the permaculture community. The true cost of running this event is about $250 per person to cover both Omega expenses and the cost of the facilitators.
The time to register is now! We’re delighted you’re here.
Greetings Northeast Permies!
You’re invited to JOIN the Permaculture Institute of the Northeast to strengthen our Permaculture network and to increase community resilience throughout our region.
Permaculture inspires and empowers thousands of people across the Northeast to imagine and design healthier and more functional relationships with nature and with each other. Whether you apply Permaculture at home, a garden, farm, or regenerative business — connecting with others for community and to share resources and best practices will support you.
Through our Membership Drive, PINE will:
- Map the thousands of individual and business members that make up our network. Regional organizers in the U.S. and Canada estimate there are 6,000-10,000 permaculture supporters in the Northeast – wow!
- Further develop a searchable database of regional Permaculture demonstration and teaching sites, courses, jobs, internships, and useful seed/plant/equipment resources;
- Circulate regional permaculture news about innovative projects and collaborations, “permacultural” responses to major issues, and more;
- Call together a Spokescouncil to support cross-regional communication and support local permaculture organizing efforts
- Continue to convene regional gatherings and convergences
Between now and March 1, 2015, PINE wants to connect 1500+ people and raise $30,000-$60,000 to fund these initiatives.
On average, $20-$40 per member will reach our goal! At the same time, we invite you to join us nowregardless of whether you can make a financial contribution.
PINE members have direct access to participate in and shape the projects that PINE takes on and to influence the direction of our regional movement. The projects above are based on years of community input and PINE wants your involvement. For example, join today and nominate local leaders to the regional Spokescouncil!
We thank you for your participation and support and trust that building PINE will give everyone in our region better access to each others’ wisdom, enthusiasm, vision, and good strategic thinking.
Elyssa Serrilli and Uma Lo (former PINE Board member)
on behalf of the PINE Board of Directors
Click here to learn more about PINE and 10 years of service to our network.
by Marisol Maddox – Hudson Valley, NY
As a new member of the Northeast permaculture community I was grateful to have the experience of meeting other permaculture practitioners at the recent retreat at Omega. My partner, John and I recently launched a permaculture-envisioned mushroom business called MycoCulture Design. We produce tinctures, incorporate mushroom landscaping into backyards and farms, lead mushroom foraging walks, and produce spore print artwork. Since we both had limited experience with the logistics of starting and operating our own business it was a true blessing to get to connect with a group of people who were familiar with the process and who were guided by the same permaculture principles.
One of the most important aspects of the evolution of MycoCulture Design has been to constantly re-evaluate and ensure that we are staying true to our core principles of building strong communities, enhancing the local economy, increasing local food resilience, and being ecologically regenerative. There is a lot of fluidity in the identity of a business as it gets off the ground and getting business advice from any old source could easily start to navigate us towards an extractive economy model. This is where the value of the permaculture network comes in because John and I met several people at the retreat who had recently dealt with similar situations and were able to save us hours of research with their advice.
The aspect of permaculture that most impresses me is the bravery that is almost inherent upon its practitioners. In getting certified in a PDC you confront the most daunting issues of our time. It is easy to become paralyzed by pessimism so it takes a strong individual to recognize those issues, look them head on, and then step boldly towards a solutions-oriented path. To take this path you must be creative and innovative, which is another joy that I have found in my exposure to the permaculture community of the northeast. The ideas that people come up with and the ways they incorporate those ideas into the already existing skeleton of society, in an effective and meaningful way, is truly inspiring. Many people believe we have to completely restructure society in order for humanity to survive, and yes, there must be some substantial changes, but it is much easier to work from within the system that already exists. An example of this that stood out to me was the work that Abrah Dresdale is doing at Greenfield Community College in Massachusetts. The fact that she was able to get a permaculture design course accepted as a lab science course is one of the most inspiring actions I have heard in some time. Education and spreading awareness of the potential of permaculture are vital in effectively creating positive change. I foresee many other schools catching on to her wisdom and hope that such an offering becomes commonplace in the not-too-distant future.
Permaculture communities have strong futures because of their structurally sound foundations. Permaculture values and open-source attitudes are positively reinforced by the individuals who collaborate to turn the vision of a regenerative future into a reality. PINE, as it develops its membership base, will be a wonderful resource for further connecting members of the permaculture community. I eagerly look forward to my future involvement and encourage anyone who is interested to take a PDC, if you haven’t already (the one I took at Omega in Rhinebeck, NY was fabulous, in case anyone needs a recommendation). If you have already taken a PDC then please take the next step and engage the community and contribute your strengths. Synergy is a beautiful thing.
by Marisol Maddox – Hudson Valley, NY