Growing Better Lives

Previous Yurt Events – Permaculture Course 2015

drawn yurt

Growing Better Lives present a series of training events and seminars, held in our remarkable yurt at Iver Environment Centre, Slough Road, Iver Heath, Bucks SL0 0EB.

In 2015 we started off with two days of training on Permaculture led by Kevin Mascarenhas on Monday 23 March and Monday 27 April 2015.


The intention for day 1 of Integrated Systems Thinking for Mental Health projects was to build an understanding of permaculture, develop an appreciation of thinking in systems and to hear the stories of fellow professionals striving for the same outcomes.

Inside yurt: group discussion about Permaculture


It was important to ground some fundamentals about permaculture so we started the day with:

  • defining permaculture
  • ethical behaviour
  • design principles

“I enjoyed learning about the basic ideas and principles behind permaculture” – student quote  


“I liked the opportunity for open discussion and knowledge sharing” – student quote

Permaculture activities on the Iver Environment Centre site


Even in just one day, we started practising the art of design thinking.
From experience, I’ve found this is best done in group exercises while
enjoying the setting and taking in the fresh air too. 

“The activities were useful they helped me to improve my understanding of permaculture” – student quote

We created the space for looking at permaculture design strategies and mapping them to health care systems and using this to develop new insights.



“Very knowledgeable teaching and eliciting of curiosity.
An excitement to learn and engage more with the principles
of permaculture” – student quote

Our Next Steps – Day 2 Monday 27th April

In day 2 of this training, we will explore how to use the permaculture thinking framework  to support green care projects in the mental health sector.
Students will be bringing their live projects for us to work on in a group setting.
It’s going to be a fun interactive day on a shared learning journey with hopefully a lot of useful outcomes.