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A better way…

A better way…

“I originally turned to permaculture, because my methods of gardening weren’t working,” said Jennifer Ringbauer, sustainability educator at Bathurst’s Rahamim Ecology Centre.

“I was working terribly hard at creating food in my garden and none of the systems I was using worked. So, I looked at permaculture to find a system to grow food successfully and take a lot of the work out of gardening.”

Permaculture is difficult to briefly define, but essentially it is a set of design principals for creating a more sustainable way of life. It encompasses many elements, but one practical benefit is using these principles to create bountiful, food producing gardens that work synergistically in their setting.

“[Permaculture] looks at creating a community in the soil, in the plants that you grow, so they work together to feed each other and nourish each other in community, so you don’t really have to put many inputs into the garden itself,” said Jennifer.

“If the system works, all you need to do is reap the benefits from the produce that you create in that garden….but permaculture takes things further, it turned my world upside down in the way I looked at the world and the community that we live in also the economy we work within.”

Starting July 29, Jennifer will be teaching a Permaculture Design Certificate through Rahamim, sharing her passion for these principals and how we all can benefit.

“The course I'm running is about utilising earth in a better way,” she said. “It is a course that's running over a semester on Monday nights for four hours each week and also a couple Saturdays we will go see farms, houses and blocks that have implemented some permaculture design to their place.”

Rahamim, situated on 10 acres south of Bathurst, is designed with permaculture principals. It includes a community garden, orchard, urban sensitive water design, market garden, herb spiral, ponds, compost systems and many places designed for habitat for local wildlife.

For Jennifer and others at Rahamim showing people how to utilise the earth in a better way is not just a passion it is a calling.

Founded by Sr. Patricia Powell, Rahamim Ecology Centre is a ministry of the Sisters of Mercy with a mission to care for our planet.

“It is quite deep,” said Jennifer, “She basically saw the Earth as the ‘poor’ at the moment and this ministry is trying to create a way to look after Earth and connect with Earth in a deeper way.”

Rahamim’s work involves advocacy for the environment, education about the environment and building connection with Earth.

“As sustainability educator, my role is to teach people how to garden and how to live sustainably, which involves organic gardening methods, permaculture, regenerative farming also going into the kitchen and being able to create good food,” said Jennifer.

“Making people aware of the benefits and the simplicity of being able to live sustainably.”

If you would like to know more about Rahamim and the upcoming Permaculture Design Certificate, visit www.rahamim.com.au

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