Shaping The Future - resilience and positive change for ourselves and our communities.

Start: Saturday, March 2, 2013 - 12:30pm Location: Newbold House, Forres, Scotland

This unique weekend event in Moray, Scotland, brings together two of the UK's experts in resilience and positive change for a group exploration of the hard question: How do we face living and working sustainably in the world today and move positively towards the next decade? Nature-based retreat and workshop centre, Newbold House is proud to host this important event which offers insights and practices to help strengthen our resilience and our ability to act for positive change.

The weekend will include a visit to world-famous eco-village, The Findhorn Foundation in order to see a resilience success story in action and an organic, locally-sourced, sustainable dinner at eco-mansion, Newbold House.

Led by Chris Johnstone, author of Find Your Power and specialist in the field of the psychology of positive change and Alan Heeks, expert on sustainable living and author of The Natural Advantage, this participative workshop will explore how we as individuals, local communities and as a society can collaborate and innovate to improve our quality of life in the face of global sustainability challenges.

'We all want to live and be well, feel fulfilled and have some material comfort in our lives...How do we meet our needs without depriving or damaging other people, other life-forms and the planet itself? Alan Heeks

Facing these issues can be difficult and overwhelming but Alan and Chris bring a diverse range of methods to this experiential workshop, including:
* Explore both our fears and hopes for the future 
* Research from economic well-being think-and-do tank, New Economics Foundation (NEF) and other relevant bodies on the factual outlook for the 2020s, and ways to meet the problems
* Application of Western and Eastern teachings and practices relevant to our current situation
* Use of narrative techniques to harness creativity and increase our sense of being able to change things
Peak oil, climate change, economic contraction, inequality, energy and food costs... So many future trends could be viewed as huge problems...or could just as easily direct us towards a more mutually supportive, locally resilient way of life. Chris and Alan will address the overwhelm and denial by leading the group to explore the alternatives - including looking at communities and how they play a vital role in evolving an organic way of living.

Workshop Details

2nd - 3rd of March 2013.
Arrivals from 12.30 Saturday finishing at 17.00pm on the Sunday.  
Saturday: Arrivals and check in, afternoon tour of the Findhorn Foundation eco-village, Dinner.
Sunday: Workshop 10.00-17.00 including lunch

It takes place at Newbold House, 111 St Leonards road, Forres , Moray Scotland, IV36 2RE

Price: £105 (£10 single room supplement) Sunday workshop only: £55

For bookings or further details, please contact Newbold House on 01309 672659, or

About the facilitators

Alan Heeks is a consultant, entrepreneur and writer with a deep interest in creating sustainability at the personal, business and environmental levels. He began his career in brand management with Procter and Gamble in the UK. He then spent two years in the USA, obtaining an MBA with High Distinction from the Harvard Business School. Alan's latest major project is the Rural Renewal Company, which aims to promote rural renewal and sustainable community through mixed-use developments with eco-housing, social enterprises and community land facilities. Alan is an expert on sustainable living and founder of 3 successful green education housing projects. See more at

Chris Johnstone Is a coach, author and trainer with over 25 years experience in helping people bring positive change into their lives and the world. His new book, Active Hope, co-authored with renowned 'deep ecologist' Joanna Macy, describes how to strengthen our capacity to respond to planetary crisis.

About 'Eco-Mansion'

Newbold House is a wellbeing and nature workshop/retreat centre providing residential courses year round. This beautiful Victorian mansion is run by a small resident community in Forres, Moray committed to living and working by socially and ecologically sustainable principles. The house resides in the picturesque and tranquil region of Moray Speyside; the coastline recently voted as one of the world's best by National Geographic.

Our Sustainability Values Our major current project is to transform our large 1890's Victorian country house into a completely carbon-neutral base for all our activities. We will be using multiple renewable energy sources including sun, wind and wood fuel. In the last year, we have reduced our carbon output by 45% by switching to wood-burning stoves and aim to be 90% carbon-neutral within the next year by switching completely to wood and solar-thermal.

We compost all our food waste, have a car-share scheme and use low energy lighting. We either recycle paper or use it for composting and wherever possible, we avoid using printed materials and market via the Internet.

As we are based in the UK it is possible to travel here using a lower carbon option than flying. There is a sleeper train service from London to Inverness and trains and coaches from most large cities.

We grow most of our own vegetables and fruit, make our own bread keep our own chickens, forage in the local woods and work to preserve, dry and cure as much home produce as possible. When we need to buy in, we source as locally as we can. For example though mostly vegetarian, when we buy meat we use a local butcher whose produce is all sourced locally to a very high welfare standard. It's also important that our suppliers are socially responsible and employ local people. For example, many of our dried goods come from a local whole food shop that is a community owned enterprise.

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