Training of Trainers in Canada

Programme Overview

Type: Face to Face (7 days)
Start Date:
18 Abril 2020
End Date: 24 Abril 2020
With Facilitators


Certificate: Yes 

Organised by:
Hosted by:

O.U.R Ecovillage, Canada

1565 Baldy Mountain Road, Shawnigan Lake, BC


our eco logo

Gaia Education’s Training of Trainers (ToT) is answering an international demand for more well-qualified educators and facilitators able to conduct our worldwide programmes. We joined forces with UNESCO Global Action Programme Priority Area 5 – Accelerating Change at Local Level, and are embarking on a path of expansion that calls for qualified trainers who can build capacity for the implementation of the SDGs at local level.

The participants will be equipped with the skills and methodologies to facilitate transformative learning environments and host multi-stakeholder conversations that enable collaborative action. The aim is to help you deepen your experience in how to teach, facilitate and train people by enabling participation among a community of learners. We hope to support and inspire you to know what you are most deeply called to teach, and why this kind of education is so critically important for the future of life on Earth. 

tc canada

Learning Outcomes

During the Training of Trainers, the participants will:

  • develop core skills of participatory facilitation and learning

  • gain confidence in holding groups and building resilient learning communities

  • facilitate participant engagement in critical thinking, problem-solving and decision-making in contexts that are personally relevant to them

  • decode UN conventions from concept to transformative action

  • unleash the creativity inherent in edge work

  • receive a training on the Sustainable Development Goals

The Training of Trainers is built upon three pillars:

SDGs – Negotiating Tensions between Global and Local

The world is marked by a strong and creative tension. It is a tension between what is global and what is local. The global face is powerful, and seeking to be more so. But a tide is rising, steadily reinforcing the local, resulting in an increasing ‘Glocalisation’ as the global and local converge. This module will teach edge workers and facilitators how to navigate between the two spheres in language, ethics and implementation. It will support participants to decode relevant UN conventions into meaningful frameworks for transformative action at the local level. Topics include SDGs vertical integration, UNESCO Global Action Programme Priorities Areas, and how to translate Global Climate Agreements into action through behaviour and life style changes.


Facilitating Participatory Learning Journeys

The aim of this module is for facilitators to gain the necessary skills and confidence to teach the four dimensions of sustainability in ways that support participants to empower themselves both inwardly and outwardly. These future facilitators will be expected to have knowledge in the areas they plan to teach and this module will prepare them to teach this material in a way that builds a learning community and draws deeply from the group with which they are working. Participants will ride a dynamic balance of meditation practice, experimenting with facilitation and clarifying principles to navigate a holistic educational experience. There will also be ample time for facilitation practice where all participants will gain confidence in using participatory learning tools by taking the lead in assigned sessions.


Deepening the Edge Work

The edge is the meeting point between the known and the unknown, between something being too well known, which makes it boring to us, and too unknown, which makes it confusing. The edge is a zone of high intensity, instability, creativity and innovation. Just as it is possible, through the design of ecological sustainable systems, to increase diversity and life by maximising the edges between neighboring biological communities, so it is possible to create a larger edge effect in community development thereby maximising its benefit to the society as a whole. This module will position Gaia Trainers as maximisers of edges between different communities with differing modes of operation, power structures, cultures, physical environments and worldviews. It will equip trainers with the skilful means to adapt to multiple scenarios and situations and ultimately thrive and help others thrive through creativity and playing for collaborative advantage.


SDG Training of Multipliers

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Training is a two-day course which can be taken as a stand-alone training. This interactive course invites participants to discuss the implementation of the SDGs at the global and local levels. It is a question-centred training, designed to further SDGs education and engage local communities in a process that will turn the SDGs into meaningful projects that are locally relevant and collaboratively implemented by the communities themselves.


This training is designed to build the capacity of participants to become Multipliers – facilitators of vitally important conversations who can replicate and organise their own SDG Training of Multipliers. The goal is to create a ripple effect and multiply the implementation of the SDGs. In this training participants learn an easily replicable process to facilitate more of these conversations themselves in the future, with the SDG Flashcards and the SDG Multipliers Handbook as useful guidance tools to support the process.

The Training of Trainers includes a SDG Training of Multipliers. You can choose to register for the two-day SDG Training only. Please note that if you wish to become a Gaia Education Certified Trainer, you must attend the full Training of Trainers and not only the SDG Training. 


What You Will Receive

    • full tutorial support to complete course and achieve all the learning outcomes

    • an expanded Teacher’s Manual (digital)

    • a Gaia Youth Activities Guide (digital)

    • a Certificate of Completion

    • after completing the ToT, you will be able to take our Design for Sustainability online course at a discount price

    • a pathway to joining the Gaia Education Certificated Trainers’ Roster

    • fast track Face-to-Face course certification


The tuition prices for the programme are as follows:

  • Full Training of Trainers with accommodation and food, 18  – 24 April 2020,  884/ 792GBP
    The lower fee (approx $1,300 CAD) is minimum for us to provide the course.
    The higher fee (approx $1,450 CAD) supports scholarships for others to attend.
  • Sustainable Development Goals Training,  18-19 April 2020, £195 GBP (approx $320 CAD)

When booking your place you will also have the chance to buy a set of SDG Flashcards (18 GBP), that is the toll will be used in the SDG Training.

The course will start on 17 April at 9:30 am and finish on 24 April before 3 pm. Participants are advised to arrive on April 16 evening and stay overnight.


O.U.R. Ecovillage

O.U.R. (One United Resource) Ecovillage is a sustainable learning centre and demonstration site which focuses on ecological ways of living involving Permaculture design. Located on an extraordinary 25 acres near Shawnigan Lake, British Columbia, O.U.R. Ecovillage began operations in 1999 with a vision to create a model demonstration sustainable village community rooted in social, ecological, and economic well being. O.U.R. Ecovillage is a sacred space where permanent residents and short-term visitors co-create sustainable community.



May East - Via Web

May East is a British/Brazilian urban ecologist, sustainability educator and social researcher. Her work spans the fields of cultural geography, world music, and women’s studies, A UNITAR Fellow she holds a Master of Science in Spatial Planning with specialization in the rehabilitation of abandoned villages. Her research interests include nature-based solutions for urban planning and the use of regenerative design approaches for shaping eco-communities, mining cities, slums, transition and ghost towns. Co-founder of Gaia Education, currently she serves as the UN House Scotland Director of Cities programme. May was designated one of the 100 Global SustainAbility Leaders by Showcase Asia and ABC Carbon three years in a row and Women of the Decade in Sustainability and Leadership by Women Economic Forum 2019.

May East

Jane Rasbash

Jane works in sustainable development using an empowerment and engaged spirituality approach. She lives in Findhorn Ecovillage and has taught on EDEs in Findhorn, Sieben Linden, Myanmar and Thailand.

Jane supports all stages of the project cycle as a needs based consultant for community, sustainable education and rights based projects in Asia and Africa. Jane has taught the work that reconnects for many years and more recently transition town training. She co-founded the Grassroots Leadership Training, an ongoing programme with a big impact on emerging civil society in South East Asia, particularly Myanmar.

Jane is also a life coach who mentors leaders in the South, often working in incredibly challenging situations. She is passionate about Traditional Village such as Ecovillage and shifting existing communities towards resilience, and supports GEN to take this forward.

Jane Rasbash

Giovanni Ciarlo

Giovanni is a sustainability consultant, musician and change agent for peace and social justice. He served on the faculty of the Sustainable Businesses and Communities MA programme at Goddard College, where he completed his MA degree.

He presently works in the management team of Gaia Education and is Coordinator of the online course Gaia Education Design for Sustainability(GEDS). Gio is a past president of the Board of the Global Ecovillage Network(GEN), and co-founder of the Ecoaldea Huehuecoyotl in Tepoztlan, Mexico, an ecovillage based on principles of sustainable living through the arts and ecology.

Gio is passionate about building community, organisational development, facilitation and mindful living. His work emphasises artistic creativity, team building, deep democracy, nonviolent communication, social justice, and environmental responsibility. He is committed to fomenting a restorative culture.

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How to become a Certified Trainer

Taking the ToT is part of the Gaia Education learning journey and brings you one step closer to becoming a certified trainer. The minimum requirement to be certified is to complete the following:

  1. Attend a Gaia Education Certified Face-to-Face Ecovillage Design Education programme (EDE)
  2. Complete the minimum of one dimension of the Gaia EducationDesign for Sustainability (GEDS)online course, focusing on the area you want to teach
  3. Attend the Gaia Education Training of Trainers (ToT) course
  4. Pass an interview during the Gaia Education ToT. This will ascertain your suitability to be certified and included on the Gaia Education Certificated Trainers’ Rosteror determine any additional steps required to fulfil this.

Maintaining the Certificated Trainer Status

A Certified Trainer is involved in a continuous process of emergence, active engagement, innovation and development. To maintain certificated trainer status you must:

  • keep up-to-date information on the Trainers Directory.
  • regularly contribute articles, exchange ideas and share relevant information with the Global Ecovillage Educators for a Sustainable Earth (GEESE) and through other Gaia Education communication channels.
  • have a consistently positive facilitator evaluation from students and organisers.
  • have facilitated at least one Gaia Education certified face-to-face programme within two years of receiving your certification.
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