Aline Van Moerbeke
La Casa Integral

Permaculture Design Course facilitator, Permaculture Teacher trained by Rosemary Morrow and Robin Clayfield and Diploma Tutor. Living the permaculture life in Spain since 2000 (Flemish born), experimenting with low footprint living and covering my basic needs in a Mediterranean climate and Spanish community.  

After a good few years on a sailboat, the return to the land made me reflect on minimalizing and degrowth. As easy as it was on the boat, so difficult it seemed to live in a house with all the creature comforts: no need to think about where and how you will store food, where you will get clean water from and where your dirty water will go.

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There I began my search for sustainability, starting with the vision of wanting to green my then job as a real estate sales director and hence setting up my “Eco-Inmobiliaria” Home Sweet Homes Mallorca, which the world wasn’t ready for at the time (to not say I ran out of funds!).

Taking bio-construction courses with Eco-Union and Gaia EDE, I got to know Permaculture in June 2011 and this fact was the starting point of an eye-opening whirlwind of a journey! Coincidentally I also had a first client for my “eco real estate agency”, Christer Söderberg, who instructed me to find a site for a possible ecovillage for him and his Open World Villages Foundation.

This same client (who I unfortunately never found a suitable property for on Mallorca) organized a Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course, certified by Richard Perkins, Darren Doherty and Julio Cantos in October 2011. After this experience, I also managed to secure a volunteer’s position on the World View dimension of the Gaia EDE course in November 2011, which then led on to the co-founding of the not for profit association Permacultura Mediterránea in December 2011 with Mandy Merklein, who I had met in the Gaia EDE modules. PermaMed stands strong to this day, and we are very active in several projects, many of them educational (in and with public education centers/teachers!) and particularly wanting to create demonstration sites, community forest gardens and Living Labs (currently looking for a new site in Catalunya!).

Having left the world of tourism and business, I am particularly interested in “Social/Economical/Political Permaculture” or “Invisible Structures”.

The different models of economics and new types of currency, various styles of leadership, the intrinsic interdependence of humans, conflict transformation, the Ethics of Caring for People starting with oneself, the relationship between the soil’s health and our own microbiome, holistic management as a decision-making tool in your projects and your personal life and transformation of behaviour needed for adaptation… All these concepts make my ears buzz and my heart jump, among other facets of Permaculture. 

Right now my agenda is filled with tasks for the PermaMed association (currently working on a Erasmus+ funded Education for Sustainable Design manual for highschool teachers), the setting up of a Permaculture translation service business prototype through the PC Colab, tutoring sessions for PDC and Diploma Pathway participants in several organizations, building bridges by being a communications collaborator in the national Permacultura Íbera network, and facilitating the Ecological Design Dimension online course for Gaia Education. 

Besides these very rewarding activities, I hike every day in the natural park in which I currently live, whilst I wait for the possibility of leading hiking groups to return (covid-19 restrictions put me out of a job there!). I am also a lifelong student and am enrolled in Naturopathy, Nutrition and Californian Massage courses.

I would just love to have a spare 24 hrs a day to keep many projects moving and feel the energy of people truly connecting, but at the same time, I am very much aware that Activist Burnout is real and might well come back to haunt me if I don’t design for my Inner Landscape. Hence my priority is my Daily Practice and Slowing Down to the Speed of Life (excellent book!), which then makes for a much clearer mind and more effective working! 

Want her to be your mentor? 

Request her during orientation when you enroll in our Permaculture Design Course.

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