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Read the whole May/June Newsletter

Or look below for upcoming events, mentorings and offerings from our network


Red Squirrel Resources – bespoke 8 Shields offer 
Engaging videos, downloadable resources and Coyote’s Guides 
Red Squirrel Resources has got off to a flying start, we’re really happy with all the glowing feedback we’ve received and have just created a special offer exclusively for the 8-shields network. Please take a look and we welcome any feedback at this early stage.
We’re delighted to offer all of you in the 8-shields community the following deal: One week free trial, 10% off for your first year’s membership and we will forward your first month’s payment back to the 8-shields UK to support the mycelium network they’re tending. Please click this link to access this bespoke offer:
As with all our members, you’ll get immediate access to a month’s content along with some foundational videos to start you off. You will then receive more video resources added to your library month 2 and 3. By month 4 you’ll unlock access to our entire, fast growing library. Our bitesize videos all aim at deepening connection to self, others and nature and range from sensory activities, seasonal foraging opportunities, skills development, games, crafts, songs and stories…
You can check out the main website here with a selection of free videos.

Request for support to go to Anake this year

Hello Nature Culture people, my name’s Teddy.
You may know me from the Art of Mentoring in Fife last year, I volunteered in the kitchen, rejoiced in the fireside singing, and was a bit shy.
During my time there, I learnt about the Anake Program, run at the Wilderness Awareness school in Duvall, WA, USA.
I feel deeply called to attend this year. The prospect makes my heart sing, and as a young activist, I feel the journey of it will hugely support me to be able to care for myself better, and bring my gifts to the world far more fully. I believe the skills they teach are extremely important for us in these times of ecological instability, to remember how to live in balance with the rest of the life on this planet once again. I want to be part of that remembering.
I’ve gained a place, but I don’t have the resources to get/stay there.
So I need your help. Please hear me when I say that I need the support of my wider community.
To help me broadcast this video. To find financial support. And to reach out to people who feel connected to me, and the dreams of the more beautiful world that is possible. So that we can step into connecting, supporting one another, and dreaming up our contribution to stewarding that world in.
I made a video that explains this more fully as well as how you can you get involved with this, which you can watch here.
Donations link
I wish you good health and a joyful Beltane x

Slowing Down and Stretching Out – Kevin Button

Hello everyone! Last summer I was interning at Twin Eagles Wilderness School (which was awesome) and now I’m stranded in paradise with friendly people, goats and tomato plants at Hawthorn Farm. Hawthorn Farm is a wonderful and beautiful little homestead in the Pacific North West of the United States. Due to the shut-down of U.S. borders with Canada, I could not leave the country before my visa expired and so reapplied to extend my stay. I have recently realised that during these 8 years of my meandering, moving around the world, wandering, traveling, apprenticing and learning, that I have not spent more than 8 months in one given place. I see myself being invited to drop my travel plans and live the seasons here. I’m grateful for spring unfolding, and feel that I’m at a point in my life where I’d like to slowly set some roots.
If I don’t get married here (you never know) my intention is to live in the U.K. (I have a U.K. passport) specifically around the South West, but at this point I’m also open to other locations. I dream of being based close to water, forest and mountains (and/or hills), and with people who care. I hope to be participating for the next 2021 Art of Mentoring. People involved with 8 Shields, Kamana Naturalist Training, rite-of-passage work, medicine walks, nature connection are in my opinion people who share similar visions of how we relate to land, self and other. This is partly why I’m establishing potential connection through this newsletter, to make a first step into the direction of getting to know folk in this line of work and value living.
On the note of dreaming and wandering I like the idea of being in bicycle distance from people who share similar values and practice them. My personal projects to that end include building a tiny home from locally sourced materials, treehouse studio, hoop-house and sauna. Co-manage nutrient healthy soils, grow lots of cabbage, make Sauerkraut, shoot arrows, assist with nature classes (amongst others). These personal dreams of mine may take years to accomplish, however, I thought why not send a listing here, so I’m very excited to meet individuals of similar nature and please feel free to reach out to me, I’d love to meet – even if the first step is an email!

Roots of a Regenerative Culture webinars – David SmartKnight

Roots of A Regenerative Culture – exploring the application of the 8 Shields model within the context of Extinction Rebellion. 
‘Nature has done regeneration for billions of years.
Understanding nature’s patterns can inform us as we create our own regenerative cultures, whether within Extinction Rebellion, our workplaces, homes or our wider communities.
This training demystifies how to make everything we do regenerative and, as such, it is the key to understanding how to build resilience within ourselves and our communities.’

Every Monday and Thursday 11:00-13:00 during the lockdown, on Zoom. 
Meeting link   Meeting ID: 971 959 211 Password: 919488

Connection Matters Podcast launch – Leona Johnson
I am really excited to share with you the launch of Connection Matters Podcast. 
Bringing together heart centred, nature-connected, curious people who share the enquiry: how can we create a connected and meaningful way of living that brings more health, happiness and growth to our world?
As a result of my journey into Eco-psychology and Nature Mentoring as well as running the Social Enterprise Live Wild CIC I’m grateful now to have connections with some really inspirational friends, Teachers and Elders. This podcast aims to capture some of the stories, wisdom and magic of these inspirational humans as well as with many others working towards authentic, connection driven living.
Themes we explore include; Permaculture, Eco-psychology, The Eight Shields Model for Holistic Connection, Earth based Spirituality and traditional cultural wisdom, Nature connection through plants, Culture Repair, Ancestral Work, Grief Work and Trauma, NVC (Non-Violent Communication), Movement, Body Work and breath work, Voice work and music, Community and celebration, Rites of Passage, Connection parenting, Bio-leadership and Heart Centred Entrepreneurship as well as many others.

With deep gratitude for my life and all that I have been given I dedicate this podcast to the future seven generations. 

Leona Johnson of Live WIld CIC, Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire.
Podcast Launch Date – 26th May 2020


A WEEK WITH… a tree

Faciitators: Elizabeth Swift and Carol Middleton
Location: Online
Hello everyone. We hope that you are managing this crazy time and still managing to enjoy some time in nature.
We would like to try out some material we are planning for a bigger project in 2021. 
We would love it if you joined in with our weeklong tree-connection invitation.
We are running this on the blog page of our website – with links to social media – so those of you not on social media can participate too.
We would love it if your friends joined in – so that we get feedback from people who don’t know us as we as from those who do.
There are more details on our blog page here.
We are looking forward to it and hope you enjoy!
When: May 1st-7th
Exchange: Free
Find out more here, or contact: 

The 8 Seasons Path

Faciitator: Kai Northcott
Location: Online
A 6-week coaching program to help you live your purpose and build community around your visions. Establish rhythms, routines and practices that will help you accomplish more by “doing” less. Build connections based on your purpose, to give you the support you need through any challenges. And get one-on-one coaching on how to apply the 8 Shields Model to your specific situation. For mentors, entrepreneurs, facilitators, coaches, and anyone wanting more effectiveness and more ease in their work. After retiring from a successful career as an insurance broker, Kai Northcott has been building bridges between the worlds of business and nature connection for more than a decade.
When: Tuesdays @ 4pm UK time, May 5 – June 9
Exchange: £350-£850 sliding scale
Find out more here, or contact Kai: +1 828 348 7352

Midsummer wilderness solo
Facilitators: Lien De Coster and Katrien Deboutte
Location: Nohedes, Catalan Pyrenees, France
A wilderness solo is a contemporary translation of the ancient ritual of the vision quest, which was held in all corners of the world. Originally it was a rite of passage from youth to adulthood. Youngsters left their community on a search for vision for this life, their gift to their people. Today we miss this kind of ritual reflection time, which brings lots of people on a path which is not theirs. A wilderness solo retreat can help you to get (more) clarity about what is essential to you. 
When: June 20th to June 28th 
Exchange: 800 euro (there is a 500 euro budget spot available)
Find out more here, or email:

Land-based Solo Quest with Rebecca Card on Dartmoor

Facilitators: Rebecca Card supported by Bell Selkie.
Often called Vision Quest, this ancient 4 day ceremony with the land and with yourself offers opportunities to see what wants to be revealed and what is waiting for you in the rich and deep journey called Life.
Are you at a point in your life where you feel like change needs to occur but you’re not sure what that is? Do you feel that you need to receive guidance from the other-than-human realm in order to uncover your soul’s purpose to take back as a gift to your people? Is there something you need to let go of in order for the next step in your life to happen?
This can be an opportunity to mark a moment of transition in your life, for finding something that is hidden so that you can live more authentically, or to simply be with yourself and the other-than-human in a held, safe and potent way.
You will receive support from 2 experienced guides around self generated ceremony as well as any practical advice you need.
Please note that an application process is necessary before making a booking and payment.
When: July 21-30
Exchange: £700
Find out more here or

Swedish sitout solo
Facilitators: Lien De Coster and Miki Dedijer
Location: Orrevik, Swedish West Coast
The sitout – or utesittning – is an ancient tradition of the northerners, an ancestral call to leave family and the familiar and be dreamt by the earth. There is a time in our lives when bewilderment is called for, when we feel tugged towards something beyond the four walls and the spear-straight streets, and for reasons often unknown to ourselves, we take the dark road heading out of town, across the fields, into the wild reaches of this world. We invite you for a solo sitout of four days and nights in the woods of Orrevik, a family-run farm on the west coast of Sweden, a region the old ones knew as the borderland between Alfheim, home of the elves, and Ranrike, the realm of the sea goddess
When: July 20th-29th 
Exchange: €1,100
Find out more here, or email: or

Nature Culture – 8 Shields Introduction weekend and more in France

Facilitators: Peter Cow, Rebecca Card and Bernard Joseph, with a full ‘acorn’ for Nature Culture
Location: Near Agen, SW France
Join us for one or two events in France this summer – Nature Culture, a weekend introduction to the 8 Shields, and Earth Culture, a 4 day deep introduction to Permaculture. We are hosted at a new retreat centre, and we will also support the hosts to connect to the wider landscape, and design and develop the site. 
 Both courses are led in English, with French translation where needed. Proper beds are available in shared bell tents for an additional supplement.
Come and enjoy some summer connection culture in SW France!
When: Nature Culture – August 7th-9th, Earth Culture August 10th-14th
Exchange: Nature Culture €295 (€250 concessions),
Earth Culture €395 (€350 concessions)
Find out more here, or email:

Alpine wilderness solo

Facilitators: Lien De Coster and Chiara Cerli
Location: Rueglio, Italy
A wilderness solo is a contemporary translation of the ancient ritual of the vision quest during which you get the opportunity to spend time alone on the land entering a deep dialogue about what is alive in you and around you.
Our solo area lies in north-west Italy at the feet of the Alpi Graie. Our base camp is situated near the village of Rueglio at the feet of the Alps, at about an hour from Turin. There will be opportunities for a sit near the river or in the forest while the first signs of autumn show themselves.
When: August 25th -September 2nd
Exchange: 800 euro (We offer one 500 euro bursary)
Find out more here, or email:

Hearth And Soul
The Weaving of Two worlds

Facilitators: Bell Selkie and Rebecca Card
Location: Dartmoor, UK
How do we weave together the sacred and the everyday worlds, the wild and the domestic parts of ourselves? How do we claim wholeness as our single most precious offering to life?
Our relationship to earth and her community has been desecrated and our own ensoulment has been neglected.
What if resecrating the way we relate to the animate world could be the healing that earth needs right now?
This week long intensive program offers time at the village hearth and a deep dive into a nature-based map of the psyche as an invitation into the underworld, including a 24 hour solo fast.
This work is based on the work of Bill Plotkin of Animas Valley Institute as well as drawing inspiration from 8 Shields wisdom.
When: October 3rd-10th
Exchange: £620 – £850 sliding scale.  All camping included.
Find out more here or Facebook or email:
Nature Culture Regeneration
An Introduction Weekend to the 8 Shields, Nature Culture and the Art of Mentoring

Facilitators: Peter Cow, Rebecca Card, Root Cuthbertson, Linda Lemieux and a full acorn
Location: Moretonhampstead, Devon, UK
An experiential weekend for adults, introducing the wisdom of the 8 Shields through nature connection and culture creation, inspired by practices observed in healthy, earth-based cultures around the world.
 Through embodying many regenerative, nature-based connective practices, participants will journey through the 8 Shields cycle and explore the wild world around us, and ‘the village’ of our temporary tribe. We will re-member how we can live in Wholeness with ourselves, the communities we are part of, and the global community of all species. There will be a children’s programme ‘Woodlanders’ run by Linda Lemieux alongside the adult’s programmes.
When: 9th-11th October
Exchange:  Adults – £190-£230-£260 self assessed scale, Children – £100
Find out more here or email:


Peer Mentoring Club

Facilitators: David SmartKnight, Klaudia van Gool and Maya Mahn.
In order to build a culture of mentoring in a society with no current framework for it, it becomes necessary for some people to pioneer by stepping into the role of mentor, despite their lack of experience.
Following a natural flow model developed by the 8 Shields Institute, the club promotes a thriving village culture through a living learning online community that provides members with the opportunity to explore, practise and develop their mentoring skills in a safe, supportive and friendly atmosphere. 
“I love the opportunity to practice mentoring and being mentored, and to drink from the wisdom of other mentors and mentees! I am amazed at the honesty and clarity all of us are giving” – current club member 
When: The club meets online once a fortnight, on alternate Wednesday evenings from 6-7:30pm (UK time).
Exchange: Membership costs £15 per month.
Contact: David SmartKnight  +44 (0) 7837413202

Peter Cow – Personal and Acorn Leadership Mentoring

Have you been inspired by the Acorn and are interested in bringing it into your work or events? Peter has been running events and teams using the Acorn model since 2015, and can support you if you want to explore how it can invigorate, empower and bring more wholistic holding to your work and organisations.
Peter is a Social Permaculture facilitator and has been part of the staff for the ‘Rebuilding Nature Connected Communities’ 8 Shields Institute online training. He also ‘Norths’ many events each year using the Acorn model (as you can see from the event listings!) including being on the core team for UK Art of Mentoring camps. He is passionate about how the Acorn and other wholistic cultural tools can bring workplaces and events to life in a richer, more connected, more satisfying way.
Peter also offers general personal mentoring and anchoring: to anchor you around a specific project; to bring 8 Shields practices more strongly into your life; to help develop the 8 Attributes more deeply in yourself, and more.
Location: Online
Exchange: £30-£60/hour depending on income, non-financial exchanges are also possible. Contact me for a free 30 minute exploration session.
Find out more here or email:

Safe Passage ~ Support for the Corona Threshold, an offering by Rebecca Card

As a Rites of Passage Guide and Threshold Midwife I am deeply interested in how to support you through this descent moment that we are all in, to explore alongside you these metaphorical questions, ‘what or who in me needs to die?‘ or ‘what or who in me has died that I need to mark?‘.
How can we make this transition more conscious and find deeper meaning for the collective good? This could look like a one hour or 90 minute session on the phone or online where I will listen and offer reflections and also assignments ~ nature-based processes to support a descent of the soul, a ‘dying’ process that will create the conditions for a safe and honorable rites of passage to take place. My deep longing is that this will, in turn, support you to embody whatever life needs you to be in the next chapter that all of us will enter into after the collective descent. To read more of my musings on this topic you can read my recent blog

Read the whole May/June Newsletter

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