Natural Change Outdoor Education was a 7-day training course project organised by the Hungarian Pandora Association with the support of the Erasmus+ Programme and with the cooperation of the Natural Change Foundation.
The project was organised between the 12th and 19th September 2015 in the village of Kisújbánya, located in the Mecsek Mountains in the South of Hungary. The participants of the training course were educators, facilitators, youth workers and trainers from Hungary, UK, Spain, Romania, Italy, Czech Republic and Liechtenstein.
The Natural Change approach works at personal, cultural and structural levels simultaneously to catalyse change for sustainability. It engages people working with youth and communities (youth workers, educators, teachers) in a deep process of personal change and provides them with skills to empower young people to go through meaningful learning outdoor experiences. It encourages leadership, entrepreneurship and social action for sustainability. These three levels are powerfully interconnected.
Natural Change is not only about learning to motivate participants to live more sustainably. It is about supporting them to translate personal transformation gained through this learning process into social action, leadership and innovation for a more sustainable future.In practical terms, the process includes small and whole group work and individual tasks – including intellectual, sensory, intuitive and emotional elements. The work includes structured wilderness ‘solo’ time, ‘story-telling’ and reviewing of experiences, spending time together outdoors working experientially, and short theory sessions on a wide variety of subjects. Throughout, the participants learn from and develop relationships with each other and with the natural environment. The process builds a highly cohesive community of people who explore lifestyle change and leadership towards sustainability in an authentic, inspiring and empowering way.
The Natural Change approach draws on a wide range of educational and therapeutic disciplines including developmental outdoor education, popular education, experiential learning, ecophilosophy and a number of psychotherapeutic traditions. It is also informed by practices and insights from ancient and indigenous cultures.