Change-makers and Active Hope

active hope change-makers changemaker interviews permaculture permaculture mindset Aug 28, 2023
Change Makers and Active Hope - Earth Mumma Permaculture

So you've ever heard of something called permaculture (if not read this)! It's the most effective way of taking care of the Earth and our surroundings in a really natural and sustainable way. This article explores the topic of 'change-makers' - who they are, what they do and how they face the mess we're in without going crazy with the help of 'active hope'.

Imagine creating a little ecosystem right in your backyard or garden. With permaculture, you use nature's own patterns and processes to grow plants, raise animals, and design these landscapes, living spaces and even your own mindset. Read 'Cultivating an Abundance Mindset' if this is news to you!

Essentially it's all about working with the Earth, not against it.

Now, here's where change-makers come in. They're the awesome folks who take the lead in making these eco-friendly changes happen. They're like the heroes who show us how to grow our own food, conserve water, and use renewable energy. They teach us and inspire us to live in harmony with the environment.

In fact, we regularly interview change-makers because we love their efforts so much and believe we all have something to learn or gain from listening into their wisdom. Check out the list of youtube videos we have below to tune in and hear about how they apply the permaculture principles to their lives!

Guess what? As a parent and or educator, you're in a prime position to be a change-maker too! You have the power to teach your kids about the beauty of nature, how to reduce waste, and why it's important to take care of our planet. By making small changes at home, like composting or planting flowers, you're actually making a big difference for the Earth's health.

Think of permaculture and change-makers as a way of leaving a positive legacy for your kids and future generations. By nurturing the land and being mindful of our impact, you're showing them how to be responsible Earth caretakers. It's all about working together to create a greener, more sustainable world for our families and the planet we all call home.


Change-makers are individuals or groups who actively work to bring about positive and meaningful changes in their communities, societies, or even on a global scale. They are driven by a strong sense of purpose and a desire to make a difference in areas that matter to them. You'll find them in various fields and contexts, including social, environmental, political, and technological spheres.

We did some research to find out some key characteristics they all have, which are

  1. Visionary Thinking and Long-term perspective: Change-makers often possess a clear vision of the change they want to see and they envision a better future and work towards realising that vision. They understand that meaningful change takes time and sustained effort and are committed for the long haul, not just for short-term gains. We have an awesome process in our online course to Dream Big, Start Small - Outcome Framework which helps anyone who does it to get clear on their vision. 

  2. Passion, Commitment and Inspiration: They are usually driven by these motivating emotions. Deeply passionate about their cause and are willing to invest their time, energy, and resources to bring about the desired change. By taking action and leading by example, change-makers inspire others to get involved and contribute to the cause.

  3. Innovation and Collaboration: Change-makers are often creative thinkers who come up with innovative solutions to address complex problems and are not afraid to challenge the status quo. They understand the power of working together, so they collaborate with others who share their goals to amplify their impact.

  4. Resilience and Adaptability: Creating change can be challenging, and change-makers are resilient in the face of obstacles and setbacks. They're determined to keep pushing forward and are open to learning and adapting their strategies as they go along. They're willing to change course if they find more effective ways to achieve their goals. We reckon the permaculture principles of apply self regulation and accept feedback as well as creatively use and respond to change are well embodied for this kind of outcome! 

  5. Empathy and Courage: Gentle, yet brave, they have a strong sense of empathy and care for the well-being of others, taking action improve lives and make the world a better place for everyone. With that kind of thoughtful insight, they equally express courage, to challenge the norm and advocate for change, especially when it's met with resistance. Change-makers stand up for what they believe in!


Becoming a permaculture change-maker involves adopting permaculture principles and practices while actively promoting and sharing these concepts with your community. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to get started:

  1. Learn About Permaculture: Start by educating yourself about permaculture. Read books, watch documentaries, and take online courses to understand the core principles and techniques involved.
  2. Practice Permaculture at Home: Implement permaculture principles in your own living space. Create a permaculture garden, compost your kitchen waste, practice rainwater harvesting, and design your space with sustainability in mind.
  3. Start Small: You don't have to do everything at once. Start with manageable projects and gradually expand your efforts as you gain experience and confidence.
  4. Connect with Like-Minded People: Join local permaculture groups, workshops, and online communities to connect with others who share your passion. Networking with fellow enthusiasts can provide knowledge, support, and inspiration.
  5. Volunteer and Collaborate: Offer your time and skills to local community gardens, farms, or permaculture projects. Collaborate with others to learn practical techniques and gain hands-on experience.
  6. Educate and Raise Awareness: Host workshops, seminars, or webinars to share your knowledge with your community. Educate others about the benefits of permaculture and how it contributes to sustainable living.
  7. Lead by Example: Live out the principles of permaculture in your daily life. Demonstrate how simple changes can have a positive impact on the environment. Show how permaculture aligns with a more conscious and sustainable lifestyle.
  8. Design Projects: Work on permaculture projects that align with your interests and skills. This could involve creating community gardens, establishing food forests, or designing sustainable landscapes.
  9. Advocate for Change: Speak up for permaculture practices in your community. Attend local meetings, share information with policymakers, and advocate for policies that support sustainable land use.
  10. Mentor Others: Help others interested in permaculture by mentoring or guiding them through their journey. Encourage and empower them to make positive changes in their own lives.
  11. Share Stories and Successes: Share your experiences, successes, and challenges with others through blogs, social media, or local publications. Inspire others with your journey and the positive impact you've made.
  12. Embrace Continuous Learning: Permaculture is a constantly evolving field. Stay updated with the latest developments, techniques, and best practices through ongoing learning and exploration.

Your actions, no matter how small, can create ripples of positive change in your community and beyond.

This is why we created the Nature Kids Permaculture Program. Each of these steps mentioned above are designed into our curriculum, because our vision is to provide a deep dive, life-changing offering with the knowledge (head), inspiration (heart) and practical experience (hands) dedicated to change-makers and budding earth carers who are ready to Connect, Nourish and Grow and cultivate an abundant mindset and landscape.  

Remember, being a permaculture change-maker is about embodying the principles you advocate for while inspiring and supporting others on their journey towards a more sustainable and regenerative world. Sometimes, with all the negative information we watch, hear or read, it can be challenging, which is why the Active Hope movement is so useful. 


It is a concept that combines two important elements: hope and action and refers to a proactive and engaged approach to facing challenges, uncertainties, and difficult situations. The term was popularised by authors Joanna Macy and Chris Johnstone in their book titled "Active Hope: How to Face the Mess We're in Without Going Crazy."

Often brought into the 'sacred ecology' movement, at its core, active hope is about acknowledging the realities of our world, including environmental, social, or personal challenges, while choosing to respond with a sense of purpose, determination, and positive action. It's a way of moving beyond passive resignation or denial and instead embracing a mindset of empowerment and possibility - to step into our roles as change-makers!

Here are a few key aspects of 'active hope':

  1. Acknowledgment of Reality: Active hope begins with a clear and honest acknowledgment of the challenges and problems we face. This might include issues like climate change, social injustice, or personal struggles.

  2. Positive Vision: Active hope involves envisioning a positive outcome or a better future, even in the face of difficulties. This vision serves as a guiding light that motivates action.

  3. Hope as a Verb: Instead of being a passive feeling, hope in the context of active hope becomes a verb—an active, dynamic force that drives constructive action.
  4. Action-Oriented: The term emphasises the importance of taking meaningful actions, both individually and collectively, to work towards the desired positive outcome. These actions can be small or large but are driven by a sense of purpose.
  5. Collaboration and Community: Active hope often thrives in a community or collaborative setting. Joining forces with others who share similar goals can provide support, inspiration, and a greater collective impact.

  6. Mindful of Self-Care: While advocating for change and taking action, active hope also emphasises the importance of self-care. It's about maintaining a balance between addressing challenges and nurturing personal well-being.

  7. Resilience and Adaptation: Active hope involves staying resilient in the face of setbacks and adapting strategies as needed. It's about recognising that change may take time and effort.

In a world where there are numerous challenges and uncertainties, 'active hope' encourages us to resist despair and instead engage in actions that align with our values and aspirations. It's a call to remain engaged, make a difference, and contribute to positive change, no matter how daunting the circumstances may seem.

Perhaps you noticed some similarities between the characteristics of a change-maker and the practice of active hope?


Without further ado, here are the links for inspiring change-makers that we have interviewed and feature on Youtube; 

  • Meleuka and Rahm from Rare Earth Oils ~ Watch video 
  • Ashaya Snedden: Eco Yoga Therapist, Environmental and Outdoor Educator ~ Watch video
  • Koa Windsong, Wisdom Keeper ~ Watch video
  • Mike Gaia, Food Forester in Gaia Gardens ~ Watch video
  • Susie Pickett: Earth Building FNQ ~ Watch video
  • Rodney Ingersoll, The Aquaponics Gardener ~ Watch video
  • Twiggy Dawn From Alchemilla Herbals ~ Watch video
  • Sunny Ray, the international singer/songwriter, youth music mentor and author ~ Watch video
  • Diana Condylas From Plastic Free Townsville ~ Watch video
  • Blake Hudson,The EartheArtisan ~ Watch video

If podcasts are your thing, check out The Elder Tree Podcast with Tonielle Christensen on all things permaculture and herbalism with a bunch more change-makers. 

Well, that sums up this article about permaculture change-makers and active hope. If you found this information useful, please share it. Can you think of someone in your life that is dreaming or visioning a better future but is sometimes weighed down by the heaviness of the world? Please copy and paste this url and share it onwards, especially to that special person. 

Better yet, come join our community of change-makers, living permaculture and connected to our global community via our online program! 

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