Our first PDC!!

The Coastal Permaculture Design Certificate

The first Barefoot PDC kicked off in October 2016.

Hosted by Distant Relatives eco-lodge and backpackers our location couldn't have been better for despite the hot, dry conditions experienced countrywide, the sea breeze, cool ocean and food forest microclimate provided some fine relief.

We had 16 participants join us from all over the world; from Zimbabwe, America, Nairobi, Lake Victoria, Zambia, Tanzania as well as some local Kilifians, and by day 2 there was a telling vibe floating about the outdoor classroom… this was going to be fun.

Our outdoor classroom!

Our outdoor classroom!

Our lecturers included Casparo Brown (UK) and Joseph Lentunoi (Kenya) who taught with enthusiasm and hard won experience. By day 4 the site boasted a brand new series of swales topped with lemongrass and a cheeky banana circle or two.

Starting early every morning after a plate of mango, homegrown passion fruit and pineapple the days agenda was set; a balance of classroom theory, outdoor practical, guest lecturers and field excursions with the odd ocean swim thrown in for good measure!

Our guest lecturers included sessions on IPM (Integrated Pest Management), where we scoured every bush, seedling and palm on the hunt for tell tale signs of insect, fungus and bacteria; African beekeeping (where participants trooped down to the resident beehive, whipped up a honey healing balm and tasted honey bought in from all over the globe) and Aquaculture / Aquaponics where our group received a further insight into the challenges and opportunities presented by global food production.

One of the (many) highlights of the course included a field trip excursion to Haller Park; a former quarry belonging to Bamburi Cement rehabilitated over the past 4 decades into a paradise of crystal clear pools and mangrove jungle – home to a multitude of sunbathing crocodiles, resident Hippopotomi; Sally and Potty, birds, snakes and insects galore, a family of Rothschild giraffe and some bumbling Galapagos Tortoises … not bad for a once decimated hole in the ground!

Nearing the end of the course it became obvious that our participants had been bitted hard by the ‘bug’ and any free time (before breakfast, over lunch or after a Bio Luminescence fuelled night swim) groups could be seen huddled together perfecting their design maps that was presented to the rest of the group on the last day in a flurry of newfound inspiration.

Somehow the 2 weeks disappeared very quickly and we are delighted with the result; 16 new sets of eyes, hands and heads have just been released back into the world to continue pushing this movement far beyond the much anticipated rainy season…

Congratulations to all!