An Interview with Sarah Brinker

Sarah Brinker is a talented lady.

She’s a certified permaculture designer, permaculture teacher and health coach. Not too long ago, she moved out to California from North Carolina to start growing at new business, one that will center on environmental consulting, lifestyle and health coaching (yep, all three of those together). We got the chance to speak with Sarah a few weeks ago – over Skype since we unfortunately didn’t get a chance to connect with her before she left the east coast.

Sarah majored in Environmental Studies in college, which she describes as being “broad” and without a lot of direction. But she had a “passion to make the world better.” While in school she studied abroad in New Zealand and delved into a wide range of subjects, including engineering to forestry to biochemistry and health. Several weeks after graduating in the States, Sarah returned to New Zealand and eventually her journey led her to Rainbow Valley Farm. It was there that she met David Holmgren (one of the founders of permaculture) and took an advanced permaculture class. This led her into green building, environmental consulting and health coaching. Sarah said she’d call herself a “professional generalist.”

When we asked Sarah what she’s doing now that she’s in California and she answered: “Yes…excellent question.” She’s working to construct a business that weaves together environment, lifestyle and health, centered around “the permaculture philosophy of care for the land, care for the people and share resources.” She’s been in California for about a month and says she’s “doing a massive learning curve.” The town she is in very small, right outside of Sequoia National Park, and she’s having to adapt to the desert-like climate (there’s an olive tree in her backyard). Her main mode of transport is currently a bicycle.

Sarah said one of the most valuable things she’s taken away from learning about permaculture is the importance of creating healthy relationships: “…And taking taking a holistic perspective: relationship with field, community, partner, self. You know, Zone 0.” Additionally, she talked about connecting people with nature through indoor/outdoor spaces.

With her business, Sarah hopes to be able to guide people through learning how to live out their goals, to build new skill sets. Not everyone, she said, has time to grow, cook or store their own food:  “So looking at other ways that people can connect to their community, whether it’s through CSAs…connecting to other people who are doing that, and just trying to create more community resilience.”

For the full interview visit: http://www.gastropermaculture.com/blog/24/11/2013/an-interview-with-sarah-brinker

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