Natural Building Internship
Learn to build a structure with natural materials
This three weeks Natural Building Internship will be held from the 18th of November – 9th of December, 2018 at Gaia Ashram in Thailand.
This internship is ideal for those that are interested in building their own earthen home, for those interested in learning a variety of natural building techniques & for those that are looking to live a sustainable lifestyle. Throughout the three weeks we will have theoretical sessions and most practical hands-on experience in natural building. We hope that participants go away from this course understanding the basics of natural building and will feel empowered to try and learn more. No previous experience in building is required.
What is Natural Building
Natural building is all about reconnecting with our ancestral roots and our natural environment. Building beautiful, durable, healthy and spiritually uplifting buildings as well as building nurturing relationships with people and the planet along the way.
What is this Natural Building Internship is about?
This internship aims to provide comprehensive knowledge, practical skills and experience for building a house using natural material locally found in the area. You will be involved in lots of hands on work on the Gaia Ashram project during this three weeks program. Our aim is that participants will leave motivated, empowered & with plenty of practical experience. The mainframe content includes;
- House design and designing for energy efficiency
- Using natural and ecological building materials which include natural material locally found in the area, reused and recycled materials
- How to build a structure step by step
- Integrating ecological grey water & blackwater system
- Landscaping around the structure
- Installing basic solar energy system
Practical work during the internship
Apart from having the knowledge about the different techniques of Green Building or Natural Building, this internship includes lots of practical learning or learning by doing. The combination of material and experiential learning will help interns to walk away being empowered with a lot of knowledge and practical skills.
What will we be building?
Interns will be building a toilet block together with the Gaia Ashram team. This toilet block building will be a water based vermicomposting Toilet system. Which will be a very useful contribution to the Gaia Ashram project. This toilet design is planned for Gaia Ashram to be able to host courses for Thai people. So apart from a natural build this system will be an example of an ecologically appropriate toilet design that meets the aesthetic cultural needs whilst also demonstrating the ability to recapture the nutrient from the humanure for agricultural as it is turned into beautiful vermicompost.
The system will use very small amounts of water to flush the toilet and produce low quantities of “dark grey water”; Water which is only relatively dirtier than greywater and considerably cleaner than blackwater. This is a result of the water passing through the worm colonies where it is filtered and purified to a large extent, by the enzymes and bacteria that are a byproduct of the worms and also the compost material.
We will use earth as the main building materials, incorporating recycled wood, straw, rice husk, saw dust, glass bottles etc. By working on this building project, interns will gain a hands – on learning experience in:
- Building with Earth bags
- Integrating wattle & cob techniques into the structure
- Making adobe bricks
- Integrating an green toilet system
- Installing a water and energy system in the toilet
- Installing doors & windows
- Building the roof of the structure
- Plastering, making and applying natural paints from local materials
- Creating a vermicomposting catchment area and a black water system and general landscaping around the toilet
What will the general program look like?
During these three weeks interns will take part in theoretical sessions to give the knowledge on the topics mention above, and they will work on the building project to get hands-on experience, to practice and integrate the learning.
Apart from that interns will also be integrated into the Gaia Ashram community. In addition to the course content, there will be space and opportunity to share and learn about other aspects of our community.
Additional learning the Gaia Ashram community offers to interns include:
- Community living and Ecovillage design ; different aspects of community living and how to build a community or an Ecovillage
- Spirituality; daily practice on meditation and yoga. There is also space for interns to share their practices with others
- Deep Ecology; Gaia Ashram built on inspiration of Deep Ecology & Nature connection philosophy which we will be happy to share through introductory session and through the culture we create here based on this philosophy.
Who is the main teacher?
Ben is an Ecological designer, consultant and teacher with a background in organic and biodynamic gardening / agriculture, natural building, horticulture & landscape architecture. Ben is the founder of Holistic Regeneration, has 20 years experience in the realm of Horticulture and has been consulting, practicing and teaching permaculture, organic gardening and natural building for almost 10 years in England, Malaysia, Thailand, China, Kenya and India and is currently working as an itinerant trainer of transformational and empowering workshops and courses.
And the Gaia Ashram team! See who we are here:
Where is this Natural Building Internship?
This Natural Building Internship will be held at Gaia Ashram which is a community based education center on Permaculture, Deep Ecology, Ecovillage Design Education and other sustainable living practices. We are a learning center that provides training workshops and courses for international and Asian participants. Gaia Ashram was founded in 2013 by Tom and Sunisa Deiters, inspired by a mission to help heal Mother nature and ourselves, in a small village in the northeast of Thailand, near Nongkhai.
When is this Natural Building Internship taking place
18th of November- 9th of December
How to Apply to this Natural Building Internship?
Email us sharing briefly why you want to attend the course, then sign up and pay the 100 euro registration fee through Eventbrite. After that we will send you Registration form to fill in your personal information along with information package for your preparation to participate in the course. Then you are booked!
Please send your inquiry to email@example.com and pay your registration fee throught the Eventbrite link below:
What are the fees?
The fee for this course is divided in three option according to accommodation that participants chose:
575 Euro Dormitory
625 Euro Shared Room
700 Euro Single Room
This included three vegetarian/vegan meals, accommodation and teacher fee. After you have paid the 100 euro registration fee, we ask participants to pay the remaining amount in Thai Bath cash on arrival at Gaia Ashram.
In case a participant cancels his or her participation in the program, the deposit of 100 Euro can not be refunded.
Facilities: Gaia Ashram provides basic facilities and the basic needs of participants will be met.
- Accommodation: Dormitory, shared rooms and single rooms. Mosquito nets, cushions, bedding and blankets are provided.
- Common Space for sessions: Indoor session will be held at the first floor of Gaia Sala & the Mini-Sala and practical session will be happening on the land.
- Toilet and Shower: compost toilets and showers for men and women.
- Internet: Internet Shop in the next village is usually available everyday. We have a few bicycles available. We will provide trip to internet on Sundays.
- Food: Healthy local vegetarian food will be served by local cooks. Participants will team up to cook breakfast in turns and on Sundays there is the space for participants to also cook lunch and diner.
Gaia Ashram’s policy on drugs & alcohol
We allow no alcohol or drugs on the Gaia Ashram property. We ask people to smoke at the smoking corner only. This will help to provide healthy environment for learning and living together for one month. We encourage people to take this one month as an opportunity to have a break from their smoking or drinking.
Any further information you need about this course, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
“May all the work we do for this Natural Building Internship be off benefit to all beings and to Mother Nature!”