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The Village - Educator Camp

A one week wilderness retreat educators and youth professionals seeking time to rest, reset & revitalise amongst peers. As a peer community, we’ll spend deep time in nature to initiate new forms of consciousness and awareness.

(Apply here for a bursary place)

Dates: 2pm, Tuesday 13th – 2pm, Sunday 18th August 2024

Location: A wild mountain basecamp in the Southern Lake District, near Ashlack Hall, Grizebeck, Kirkby-in-Furness, LA17 7XN

Participants: Educators, youth workers and youth practitioners and facilitators of all kind.

No. of participants: 12 (+ 4/5 staff)

ARE YOU?

By popular request we are putting on a retreat for our practitioner community! We’ve heard from our growing practitioner community how important it is to have time for ourselves as practitioners. This retreat provides just that.

This is for anyone working with young people in any shape or form. Whether you work in a mainstream educational institution, informal or alternative context, join us as we deepen into the natural world.

Participant Testimonials

Check out the Village Video Playlist

The Village Video Playlist

✅ THIS EXPERIENCE IS FOR YOU IF YOU…
⛔ THIS EXPERIENCE IS NOT FOR YOU IF YOU…
OK, I’M INTERESTED. SO, WHAT CAN I EXPECT?

Community livingyou’ll be getting a chance to live, work and form real human connections with like-minded people. Shaping the way you want to live and coexist for the week.

Space to grow and be yourselfIn addition to community living this change of pace from your day-to-day life will give you:

  • Time to enjoy some solitude
  • Space to reflect on your purpose/place in the world
  • A change of scenery to help inspire your journey of self-discovery

Resourcing and sustaining your mental health – Navigating modern life can take a toll on our mental health. During this one week adventure we’ll provide you with guidance, tools and practical ways to maintain your mental wellbeing in your daily life.

Connecting with natureWhether its a mountain walk, the nature solo (see below), wild swimming or sitting round the fire, you’ll get a chance to be closer to nature than ever before, learning about the environment we inhabit and the best ways to take care of it.

Nature SoloYou are invited to embark on an optional ‘nature solo’, where you will find a private spot in the wild away from the group to spend a day or in solitude in nature. You will go without any of the usual modern distractions, (including food!, to create space to notice, be present and connect more deeply with life.

This is an ancient practice that has existed in different forms in almost every human culture throughout time. We will spend the week preparing for this experience and feedback tells us it’s often the most transformative part of the week (see Nadège’s quote below). You can also read more about the WHY and HOW of nature solo’s here.

Develop ideas for the futureAs part of this adventure we would like to encourage you to step into your visionary self: exploring the edge of what we know by developing ideas that’ll positively help the world, and figuring out how to execute them.

Image Gallery

VENUE

Our basecamp is on the wild mountain’s behind Ashlack Hall, an incredible private campsite with scenic views over the Southern Lakes. There are two compost toilets on site and a beautiful fire-powered outdoor shower. We will set up and outdoor kitchen and social space.

We can walk directly into the mountains from the campsite as well as being a short drive from some of the bigger mountain climbs and lakes. The campground is large enough for each person to find a quiet spot away from the group or to camp together.

CHECK OUT THE SITE

YOUR GUIDES

Each camp is delivered by 2-3 Lead Guides with support from two assistant guides, from our network of trained and trainee facilitators.

All guides are DBS checked and are experts in taking groups through deep transformative journeys in the wild. We ensure the diversity of the group is represented in our guiding team as much as possible.

LEAD GUIDES

rowan's headshot

Rowan Salim

Rowan is a geographer interested in how our learning systems find balance, harmony and dynamism, like a healthy forest, desert or coral reef. After an initial career in humanitarian work and mainstream education, she walked out, until she got to the edges. For the last ten years she’s been collaborating with parents, children, neighbours and radical educators experimenting on how we may re-find ways to live in harmony with the more than human world, with each other and with ourselves. Rowan likes to work local, small and slow. Though sometimes fast is fun! She loves to play, and uses amongst other things, storytelling, art, writing and making in her practice.

max profile

Max Girardeau

Max is a radical educator and facilitator creating powerful encounters for eco-centric learning. He is Co-Founder of The Visionaries – an educational community and learning platform for educators and young people to learn to lead change with nature. Max is a trauma-informed practitioner, wilderness rites of passage guide and qualified Mountain Leader. His work draws on eco-psychotherapy, embodiment practices, cultivating imagination and deep nature connection. He is passionate about initiating new forms of consciousness and how we can collectively re-entagle ourselves into the landscape.

Faiqa Amreen

Faiqa is an educator, historian and lover of the wilderness. After spending over a decade working in schools in New York City and London, Faiqa transitioned to working collaboratively with schools, educators and young people. She is proud to be working towards increasing intersectionality in natural spaces and is currently the Education Lead at The Visionaries. She enjoys working with young people and their communities in order to examine, question and facilitate change in the world we live in.

TICKETS

Tickets are available at different four price points. Please be mindful that if you purchase a ticket at the lowest end of our sliding scale when you can truthfully afford a higher ticket price, you are limiting access to those who truly need a bursary place. Thanks for your help promoting economic justice!

!! Read about how our sliding scale works before purchasing your ticket. !!

Pay it Forward : £600 (pays for you & funds a bursary place thus widening access to those in a less privileged position)
Standard : £550
Supported : £300 (Note: We have 2 supported places per programme)
Bursary* – £50 (Note: Half of all the places at The Village are funded places. To apply, see here

🎫 Bursary tickets

We believe nature belongs to everyone and making it more accessible is one of our main priorities.

Spending time in nature is proven to significantly increase our mental and physical wellbeing. But those who stand to gain the most from nature are often systemically deprived of it.

More must be done to overcome barriers to nature access – and financial barriers are one place we can start. Our aim, by providing these funded places, is to help support an urgent transition to a more nature-connected life, for everyone.

If you’ve experienced marginalisation and want to reap the benefits of spending a week immersed in nature, please apply today!

Click here to apply for a bursary place.

❓- Frequently Asked Questions

➤ Yes. Doubt is a totally normal, healthy and human response to any new opportunity. This course has been designed with beginners and those early on in their environmental and education careers in mind. You will get all of the support and time you need from us and your peers. We believe anyone with an open mind and a collaborative attitude can easily complete this training.

➤ Consent is key for us – we will never make you to do anything you don’t wish to and you will be supported to meet any challenges gently and in gradual stages .

We ask participants to organise their own travel, and to meet us at Ulverston train station at 2pm on the start date of the camp. We will travel to the campsite from the train station together, which is about a 15 minute drive.

Travel is at your own cost so we advise if you to book early if you are getting the train, and to use a railcard if you have one!

If you are travelling by car, please meet us at the train station at 2pm and let us know if you have space for others as this may be helpful to the group!

➤ Great, we’re here to help you get experienced!

➤ We have camping gear that we can lend as necessary and will teach you how to use confidently.

➤ The things I feared most going into the camp and thought I would find most challenging, like the rain and cold, bats, slugs and bugs, and using an outdoor shower and toilet, ended up being the things I most appreciated. I faced my fears in a gentle and supported way, which has enabled me to see myself in a different, more capable way. So grateful to The Visionaries team for allowing me to be a part of this life-changing experience.” – Nadege Rene, past participant with The Visionaries*

➤ We recognise that camping and the countryside can feel less familiar and sometimes daunting for many. AND all of our ancestors, no matter who we are, lived closely to the land. This is an opportunity to reconnect with that lineage.

➤ We know it can be challenging. As an organisation, The Visionaries have been successfully leading diverse groups on positive trips into the wild for 4+ years. As a course Faculty, we have 80+ years joint experience. We’ve got your back 🙂

➤ Everyone should be able to enjoy the outdoors, no matter what their experience or ability. If you have limited mobility, or are a wheelchair user, you will know that outdoor access can present challenges. We are committed to partnering with anyone in this position to try to maximise inclusion, and we will make necessary adjustments and do whatever we can to help you to participate.

➤ Wherever possible, the course takes places in fully accessible venues with disabled toilets – please see the course dates section for details. Please feel free to contact us to discuss specific details of the sites we will be using: hello@thevisionaries.org.uk

➤ If you are a wheelchair user who has never previously camped we would advise you against applying to this course this year. But please do feel free to contact us to discuss – and to come on one of our public camps to start your journey.

Absolutely! This is a practice we are deeply passionate about. You can read what it’s all about here. There are different ways of holding it, but at it’s core it’s a three phase process – preparation, threshold, return. The intention is to provide a ceremonial container within which all kinds of magic can stir up within and around you. It creates space to tune into questions such as ‘What are my gifts? What is the world asking of me? Who am I?’

We prepare you, physically, practically, emotionally, psychologically and spiritually to spend 24-hours alone in a spot of your choice in a wild place. The invitation (and we do mean *invitation*) is to fast, to be with stillness and to go with as little distractions as possible – no phones, no notepad, no music, no food. Simply taking what you need to stay physically safe (e.g. a tarp, sleeping bag, some water and warm clothes). Tuning out of all of these things allows you to tune in to the wisdom in nature, something we rarely do.

We can provide subsidised places to those who need it thanks to generous support from the Ramblers Worldwide Outdoor Trust, who are also committed to getting more young people engaged in the outdoors.

Pre-camp – It’s important to us that you feel prepared and well supported arriving at camp. So we will have a pre-camp onboarding call with you so you can meet one of your guides and ask any questions you might have. This is also a great chance for us to hear your intentions for joining.

Post-camp – we have a growing calendar of events, taking place across the country. Villagers often get together at our events or they organise their own meetups. We also offer a post-camp 1-2-1 debrief with one of the guides, to help integrate the experience back into your everyday life.

Please don’t hesitate to get in touch:

hello@thevisionaries.org.uk

Still can’t decide? Why not check out our Instagram to see more photos and videos from previous Village camps.

ABUNDANT TICKETFor those who can pay-it-forward£600

  •  I never struggle to meet my basic needs*
  •  I own my home or property OR I rent a higher-end property
  •  I own a car
  •  I am employed OR I do not need to work to meet my needs
  •  I have access to savings
  •  I have expendable income**
  •  I regularly buy new items
  •  I can easily afford more than one holiday a year
Buy TICKET

STANDARD TICKETFor those who can pay the cost of the service£550

  •  I am comfortably able to meet all of my basic needs*
  •  I may have some debt but it doesn’t prohibit the attainment of basic needs*
  •  I own my home or property OR I rent a higher-end property
  •  I own a car
  •  I am employed OR I do not need to work to meet my needs
  •  I have access to savings
  •  I have expendable income**
  •  I can afford to buy new items
  •  I can afford an annual holiday, or to take time off work
Buy TICKET

SUBSIDISED TICKETfor those in the middle of our sliding scale£300

  •  I may stress about meeting my basic needs but still regularly achieve them*
  •  I may have some debt but it does not prohibit my attainment of basic needs*
  •  I rent a mid-level flat/property and have stable housing
  •  I own or lease a car
  •  I am employed
  •  I might have access to financial savings
  •  I have expendable income**
  •  I am able to buy some new and second hand items
  •  I take a holiday annually or every few years without financial burden
Buy TICKET

BURSARY TICKETfor those at the bottom end of our sliding scale£50

  •  I frequently stress about meeting basic needs + don’t always achieve them*
  •  I have debt and it sometimes prohibits me from meeting my basic needs*
  •  I rent a lower-end flat/property or have unstable housing
  •  I do not have a car or access to a car
  •  I am unemployed or underemployed
  •  I qualify for government assistance
  •  I have no access to savings
  •  I have no or very limited expendable income**
  •  I rarely buy new items because I’m unable to afford them
  •  I cannot afford a holiday or to take time off without financial burden
APPLY FOR IT