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The only limit to yield is the designers imagination

– Bill Mollison

Burnaby Board of Education Presents :

Greater Vancouver Permaculture Design Certificate Course

Evenings and Weekends

Gather together with likeminded people to grow with plants, animals, gardens and farms to learn about how nature designs itself and how we can become sustainable designers ourselves. We will learn how to map and design our land and our lives, plan for emergencies, grow organic food in all four seasons and work to build a more regenerative future.

2020 Dates :

April 17 - 5:30pm - 9:30pm

April 18, 19 - 10am - 6pm

April 24th - 5:30pm - 9:30pm

April 25, 26 - 10-6am - 5pm

May 1 - 5:30pm - 9:30pm

May 2, 3 - 10am - 6pm

May 8 - 5:30pm - 9:30pm

May 9 - 10am - 6pm

The certification granted upon completion of the course will empower participants as permaculture designers, consultants and beginner teachers. Graduates will be able to use the word permaculture legally in their practice, business or project. This sustainability education eco-training certificate is a practical path for greening your life, resume and portfolio. Working toward certification is not a requirement. Students may attend the course without completing the material required to attain the certificates. It’s a fun way to journey with likeminded people in an experiential, outdoor adventure in education.

Taught by a dynamic facilitator, this class caters to anyone wanting to learn regenerative design in a creative way while engaging with working systems. It is a flexible course with an ideal evening and weekend class schedule for workers, entrepreneurs, students or those with dynamic routines. Catering to the busyness of modern life, if you miss a class, you can jump in on the same module in a different class at no extra tuition costs (through the instructors) and there is no time limit to complete the certification. One on One make up classes are also available at a nominal fee.

Course Topics include design methods, patterns in nature, soils and composting, water, trees, animals, design for cool/tropical/arid climates, social permaculture, native food and medicine plants of the Coastal First Peoples, and much more. There are worksheets, gaming tools, as well as exciting living sites as our classroom. 


Optional hands-on activities throughout the course include: design charrettes, earthworks demonstration, integrative games, compost building, soil testing, plant & tree identification, medicine making and homesteading.


This course is the only of its kind with an exciting teaching tool kit that transforms lectures into games and travels to many different permaculture farms, gardens and forest locations while sharing in a uniquely creative learning adventure.  Join this adventure in learning as it journeys to farms, forests, gardens and eco-locations (Some field trip locations include Yarrow Ecovillage, A Rocha, UBC Farm, Sharing Farm and more).  Apply your learnings to the focus project for the program which is to start a map and design for where you live or an area of your choice.

Successful completion of this course offers graduates their choice of legitimate and formal certificate through Permaculture Institute USA (

Registration Opening December 1st, 2019!  

To register, please call BCCE @ 604-296-6901

investment - $888

If you have any questions, please email:

Full course syllabus and instructor bio below...

Join this adventure in learning as it journeys to farms, forests, gardens and eco-locations.

Kym Chi is a dedicated healer, grounding herself through earth stewardship, people care and regenerative action. As a dynamic woman, her main passions are Permaculture design, creative facilitation, visual art, holistic healing and community building.  To date; Kym has received 3 certificates in Permaculture Design, completed multiple teacher trainings from elder Permaculture educators, taken a variety of advanced trainings, completed a Diploma in Permaculture Education and has over 2000 hours facilitation experience.  She is a chartered Herbalist and has completed advanced herbal studies with Susun Weed, Dina Falconi, Barbara Cotgrave and Robert A. Bartlett. 


 With a love of learning, she continues to take courses that grow her understanding of the natural world. Through her stewardship of a deepened connection with the environment, Kym wishes to inspire connection with the natural environment, oneself and the greater community to invoke creative self expression and value centred living, enriching and creating healthy, abundant habitats and communities. 


With a focus on Social Permaculture, people care and life design,  Kym works with empowerment models, enjoys encouraging others on their life path and focusses on ways to support organizations and communities to become more resilient.  Her success is measured on the successes of her students, allies and friends.  


Kym lives on the West Coast of Canada where she homesteads, teaches Permaculture, runs a holistic healing practice and mentors others.




























Program Content

Module 1: Introduction to Design


  • Group introductions

  • Course orientation & requirements

  • Group goals and guidelines

  • Communication (NVC and conflict resolution)

  • Indigenous learning principles, learning styles & multiple intelligences


Learning Goals:


  • Set a course culture of safety, respect and organization

  • Create a positive & effective learning environment

  • Encourage active listening in groups

  • Value different ways of communicating and have confidence in utilizing tools of conflict resolution

  • Orient participants to course content


Module 2:  Foundations of Permaculture


  • Definitions

  • History of Permaculture

  • Ethics

  • Principles


Learning Goals:


  • Know the Permaculture ethics and the Transition ethic and how to apply them to conscious decision making

  • Gain a strong understanding of nature’s principles and how they are at the foundation of design decisions and application

  • Provide awareness of the world’s problems and the current situation

  • Shift from a place of problems to positive solution based thinking

  • Feel confident in defining Permaculture clearly to others


Module 3:  Design Methods


  • Needs, Functions and Outputs

  • Zones

  • Sectors

  • Mapping


Learning Goals:


  • Understand how to do a needs & yields analysis

  • Gain a base understanding of closed loop systems

  • Observe a site, document and recognize available resources and design constraints based on analysis.

  • Identify energies or influences that effect a design site

  • Be able to create a base map including zones & sector analysis for a site

  • Know the basic elements included in mapping a site


Module 4: Pattern Literacy


  • Physical patterns, emergent patterns, fractal patterns

  • Functions of patterns

  • Patterns in time

  • Behavioural patterns

  • Application of patterns in design

  • Guilds


Learning Goals:


  • Pattern recognition in nature and technology

  • Understand the functions of patterns in nature and how to apply that knowledge to effective design

  • Gain Pattern literacy and understand how to replace dysfunctional patterns with functional ones.

  • Know the functions of and feel confident designing guilds

  • Recognize that pattern literacy is fundamental in becoming good designers


Module 5: Design for Soil


  • Soil biology

  • Soil classification and testing

  • Biodynamics

  • Soil remediation

  • Composting

  • Soil indicators


Learning Goals :


  • Have a base understanding of the components of healthy soil and know the value of building soil.

  • Know different ways to test soil

  • Recognize different plant indicators and what they tell about soil health.

  • Understand a multitude of different ways to remediate and build soil.

  • Apply different composting techniques in appropriate situations.

  • Identify key plants that bring nutrient to the soil.


Module 6: Design for Trees


  • Ecological function of trees in relation to earth, water, air and energy

  • Succession

  • Polycultures

  • Forest gardens and food forests

  • Plant and tree identification

  • Plants as soil indicators

  • Design for trees


Learning Goals :


  • Understand the ecological functions of trees and recognize them as a keystone species in the ecosystem.

  • Learn the stages of succession and how to intervene at appropriate times.

  • Know the layers in a forest garden and different plants for each layer that grow locally

  • Identify local plants and trees and see the difference in characteristics between species.

  • Be able to integrate trees adequately and appropriately in design.


Module 7: Design for Animals


  • Design for wild and domestic animals

  • Animal care

  • Integrated pest management


Learning Goals :


  • Recognize the intrinsic characteristics, functions and outputs of animals

  • How to meet the needs of animals on site

  • Learn techniques for integrating animal systems

  • Understand effective and healthy ways to handle pests

  • Know how to safely and ethically live with wildlife


Module 8: Design for Water, Aquaculture & Earthworks


  • Water facts

  • Water conservation

  • Water strategies & techniques

  • Waste water treatment

  • Water harvesting & storage

  • Earthworks

  • Aquaculture


Learning Goals :


  • Understand how global water issues can affect us on a local level.

  • Be able to do a water audit.

  • Recognize multiple ways in which to conserve water.

  • Feel confident in applying strategies and techniques to capture, store, treat and release water safely and appropriately.

  • Know how to calculate roof water catchment amounts.


Module 9:  Climate


  • Climatic factors

  • Microclimate

  • Climate design strategies

  • World climate


Learning Goals :


  • Understand climate on a global scale 

  • Learn how to design in order to moderate and utilize climatic factors

  • Be able to identify, create and design microclimates


Module 10:  Cool Climate Design


  • Cool climate characteristics

  • Cool climate design challenges and strategies

  • Cool climate design elements, techniques and technologies


Learning Goals :


  • Learn how to effectively design homes, gardens, farms and communities in the Cool Climate.


Module 11: Tropical Design


  • Tropical climate characteristics

  • Tropical climate design challenges and strategies

  • Tropical climate design elements, techniques and technologies


Learning Goals :


  • Learn how to effectively design homes, gardens, farms and communities in the wet, wet dry and monsoon tropics


Module 12: Dryland Design


  • Dryland climate characteristics

  • Dryland climate design challenges and strategies

  • Dryland climate design elements, techniques and technologies


Learning Goals :


  • Learn how to effectively design homes, gardens, farms and communities in the drylands 


Module 13:  Social Permaculture


  • Client interview & designer checklist

  • Community building including group processes

  • Governance 

  • Land access

  • Right livelihood

  • Legal structures

  • Bioregionalism 


Learning Goals :   


  • Gain confidence in the consultation and design process for clients.

  • Be able to map assets and resources and identify community needs.

  • Understand different models of decision making and how to apply them.

  • Learn tools to provide for healthy group dynamics and efficient process.

  • Recognize opportunities for land access locally.

  • Become aware of ethical and effective business models and legal structures that support the local economy

  • Know ways to relocalize and create resilient communities.


Module 14: OS Permaculture


  • Resiliency

  • Permaculture economics 

  • Urban renewal strategies and design 


Learning Goals :


  • Be able to identify risks and mitigate disaster using Permaculture design tools and techniques

  • Know the steps in building an emergency preparedness plan and engaging local community in the process

  • Learn a variety of different economic strategies and the value of utilizing multiple currencies and tools

  • Feel confident in utilizing place-making tools, techniques and Permaculture strategies in urban environments


Module 15:  Graduation


  • Next steps (setting up a permaculture practice, further education, community involvement, goal sharing)

  • Education (accessibility, open source, alternative education)

  • Mapping and design presentations

  • Talent show

  • Certificates

Optional hands on activities throughout the course:

  • Design Charrettes

  • Earthworks demonstration

  • Integrative games

  • Compost building

  • Soil analysis

  • Plant & tree identification

  • Medicine Making

  • Homesteading


Additional Topics:

  • Medicinal plants & preparations

  • Plant Identification

  • Fermentation

  • Non-violent communication

  • Placemaking


Completion Requirements 

We don’t require those taking the course to participate in the certification requirements. 

Many people take the program and do not do the questions and project. 

No one knows who is doing or not doing this work. 

There are no tests.


Those wanting the certification will complete:

  • Map and design project

  • 100% attendance (students can arrange to make up missed classes with other groups at no extra cost, 

  • or take private make up classes with the instructors at additional cost)


Graduating and Jobs

Having a Permaculture Design Certificate from a recognized training institute will empower participants as permaculture designers, consultants and beginner teachers able to use the word permaculture legally in their practice, business or project. This sustainability education eco-training certificate is a practical path for greening your life, resume and portfolio. You will have a green edge when applying for jobs, grants or school programs

Permaculture Testimonials from past program participants:


 Delvin and Kym are amazing, talented and incredibly honouring and delightful people. Our world is safe and more alive and caring in their hands, thanks to their presence, creativity and commitment."

- Robin Clayfield

“Kym shares so much knowledge and heart in this PDC, It is impossible not to fall for Permaculture. I found so many ways to integrate Permaculture into my life on a small scale immediately, and plan and dream of Permaculture possibilities for the future. I am eternally grateful” - Paige Inglis

“Kym is a very gifted teacher and facilitator who brings a huge amount of knowledge, skill and experience and mixes in a great dose of love and laughs to the course an amazing experience.” - Donna M

“Kym Chi provided us with an awesome learning experience - teaching us foundational concepts, design principles of Permaculture that we can now use to create a beautiful, productive sustainable life and world. - Margaret R.

“This program goes far beyond simply designing an organic and sustainable landscape.  Learning about plant allies, regeneration of the land and building earth- loving social structures is the keystone of an integrated life centred on the principles of Permaculture.  Kym Chi is an energetic & passionate steward for the earth and supports rounded learning. “ - Stephanie W

“An excellent course for anyone new or experienced in Permaculture to gain further in depth knowledge and experience. Kym is a beautiful facilitator with a warm heart and so much knowledge to share” - Doug

“This course was quite challenging for me since my English is limited. However, I am glad I took this course.  Every topic was eye opening for me, Permaculture is not just about agriculture, it is about making a sustainable lifestyle.”  - Satomi S.

“This has been one of the most enjoyable and informative programs I have been a part of.  What I learned will serve me well and guide me in better serving others and the earth.  I am grateful for the teachings and for the community it introduced me to.  Thank you. - Kathy Duncan

“The Permaculture course opened my eyes to how everything is connected and how we all must work together as a community to care for the earth, the people and the future.  Kym Chi is a wonderful, passionate teacher who loves and lives what she teaches.  She is gentle, yet spicy and keeps the class momentum going strong” - anonymous

“Learning with Kym as a facilitator was one of the most creative, fun, professional and profound experiences.  She planted the seed of Permaculture in me and I can’t wait to let it grow.  - Elke H.

“I loved the variety of visual aids, cards, medicine making and visiting diverse landscapes with examples of systems. So many inspiring moments and learnings.  This was a perfect format to delve in and understand how to overcome my own fears and limitations to find solutions everywhere.   - Alison R

“If you feel any inclination to take this course, I encourage you to do it.  Do it now.  Kym and Delvin have the ability to meet you where you are and guide you with active and inspirational instruction. Harness the information and apply it personally to your business and to your garden no matter the size. Start now.”  - Craig H.

“By the law of attraction , i entered the Permaculture Design Certificate Program.  I am very grateful for Delvin and Kym on this journey, both are very professional and responsible”.  - Jenny Smith

“An inspirational journey of an Introduction to Permaculture, wetting the palette to want to dive deeper. Great foundation for self growth and tools to engage community, influence work and relationships”. -Sybrena Albright

“The course is a refreshing break from everyday life.  A chance to reflect and inspired about how we can be better.” - Karen Cameron

“I really like this course and how Delvin, Kym and my classmates were greatly responsive of my needs as a differently abled person.  I am going to carry what i have learned in this course throughout my life.” -  Myah Catherine

“I am constantly amazed at how much i have learned about everything. I feel I should have already known how it changed my perspective on my gardens, my life, family, nature, the world… I would recommend this course to anyone who wants to open their mind to a beautiful concept or simply broaden their knowledge of what our future will be made of, at least i hope. I do love how it is easy to weave into our own personal busy lives over 4 seasons of observation. It allows us the time to evolve, change, learn, try, fail, succeed and repeat.  Thank you for sharing your love, passion and knowledge of something i had never heard of and will never forget. ”  - Marie-Eve B.

“Your teaching has changed the way I observe the world. Observing with curiosity rather than judgement. I recommend this course again and again beacuase of the multi faceted teaching style and the dynamic changing venues and continual student involvement and gentle challenges.” - Maureen Witney

“I would recommend this course to any friend interested and committed to leaving this world a better place.”    - Sally Holden

"The instructors, Delvin and Kym, provide an excellent introduction to the ethics, principles, and techniques of Permaculture. The instruction is more than I could have hoped for.  Between the curriculum, and personal experiences of the instructors, the course offers a brilliant education and a profound experience." - Steven Funk

"Three years of University and a debt I'm still paying off today and I learnt more about the real world on this course than during that whole time. The majority of my posts, blogs and pub rants have been influenced by this philosophy. If you are interested in the natural world, sustainability, healthy living or just think the current way we do things in society is a little strange I'd recommend checking out Permaculture in some way or another" - Josh Davis 

"Continuing education in permaculture studies, with the amazing teachers Devlin Solkinson and Kym Chi in Vancouver BC. I'm deeply inspired by the course that I'm in with them now, and highly recommend this to anyone interested in next level Earth stewardship gardening." - Bob M

“This program was fantastic!  Delvin and Kym created a welcoming learning environment , encouraged me to step out of my comfort zone and enabled me to grasp and learn the Permaculture ethics and principles in a way that was conducive to my learning style. I’ve left this program with the confidence and knowledge to further pursue my education and career in Permaculture. I have and will continue to recommend this program to others who are interested in Permaculture and look forward to the opportunity to learn with Delvin and Kym again.”  Matt Gravel @ Plant Buoy:LPP, Victoria , BC

"This course was a creative, interactive journey that covered a broad range of topics and experiences. From Medicine making to collective games, nature walks and potlucks, the course content is delivered in ways that meet all learning styles. A great experience overall. Thank you!"   - Danielle Gauthier

"This course was so well organized. You inspired me to alter my teaching methods to help keep everyone focussed, energized and thoughtful.  I really didnt want the process to end. I really enjoyed the field trips, physically visiting so many permaculture sites and the classroom environment was good also."  - Josephine J

"I really enjoyed the open, generous atmosphere on learning days. The multi-faceted focus for each day having various activities which activated core principles or design elements worked really well. I enjoyed the balance between outside and inside time. Your love and commitment to Permaculture shines brightly!"  - Larry Popowich

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