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Holding Group

Whilst day-to-day management of the Deep Adaptation Forum resides with the Core Team, the DAF Holding Group was established in March 2020, as an advisory body. The Holding Group has the dual mandate of providing mission oversight (ensuring that the DAF Core Team of paid freelancers remain focused on the mission of the DAF), and responsive guidance (in response to requests from the DAF Core Team). 

The composition of the Holding Group is intended to reflect how the Deep Adaptation agenda is relevant to the whole of humanity. Members include external experts from a wide range of fields (politics, activism, social justice, international development, psycho-spiritual aspects, etc) as well as members who are volunteers in different parts of the DAF ecosystem.

Read more about the Holding Group of the Deep Adaptation Forum here.

Holding Group Members

  1. Malika Virah-Sawmy – person with interests including international development and sustainability aspects of DA

Malika has been working for the last 15 years in the field of natural resource management and sustainable consumption and production. She has worked as a sustainability practitioner, as a scientist, and as a facilitator. As a facilitator, she applies system thinking, mindfulness and embodied practices to support companies, NGOs, universities, and development organisations move towards systemic and holistic change. As a scientist, she does participatory research on the topic of sustainable agriculture, trade, and mining, indigenous rights, and ecosystem services. She holds a PhD and Master of Science in Environment and Geography at University of Oxford.

  1. Dorian Cave- person from the Core Team (acting as Secretary to the Holding Group)

Dorian curates the DAF Professions’ Network on a day-to-day basis; liaises with Interest Group and Task Group leaders, including managing the process of launching either; carries out quickly-applicable research on how to design better collaborative work processes; and oversees capacity-building activities for Task Groups. Through his work and PhD research, Dorian intends to help develop the Deep Adaptation Forum into the foundation of an international mass movement, focusing on peaceful responses to the climate and ecological crises we face – and the collapses that are likely to unfold. Simultaneously, he wants to develop his skills in the field of self-organised group facilitation and contribute to scholarship on the role of mutual and social learning within such processes.

  1. Jane Dwinell – person from the DA Facebook moderators

Retired RN and Unitarian Universalist clergy. Author of 3 books including Freedom Through Frugality and Big Ideas for Small Congregations. Served congregations as pastor as well as consulting with congregations re: conflict, organizational structure, and growth, and served as a hospice chaplain. Adult-long self-reliant homesteader. Also moderator for Practical DA and Northeast US DA groups. Lives in Vermont, USA.

  1. Alan Heeks – person with interests including the organisational dimensions of DA

MA Oxon and MBA Harvard, living in Dorset, UK. Director & founder of nonprofit Seeding our Future, working with individuals, communities and businesses; social entrepreneur; writer; “This crisis is a huge call for love and compassion: for ourselves and for all life including Gaia.” Recent blog, short video, web site about happiness.

  1. Viviana Jiménez – person from the Professions’ Network Volunteers

Viviana is Director of VIDA Sustainability. She has over two decades of experience working on complex issues surrounding climate change, sustainability, organisational strategy, science and innovation, and ecosystem restoration with a broad number of stakeholders. Viviana has worked with the University of Oxford, guided global corporations to expand and implement sustainability efforts, led the expansion of the UNEP Convention on Migratory Species in North America, and worked with a number of charities to further marine conservation and sustainability knowledge. She also worked as an international securities trader in Bogotá, Colombia. She is co-founder of

Mujeres y Sostenibilidad, and co-founder and advisory board member of the Boyd N. Lyon Sea Turtle Fund. She is co-lead for the Business and Finance group of the DA Professions Network, moderator and admin of the DA Experimental Multilingual FB group, and co-facilitator for Non-Violent Communication.

  1. Shu Liang – person from the DA Advocates Network

MA Disaster Risk Management and Climate Change Adaptation, living in Holland. Founder and director of Stichting Day of Adaptation, a non-profit based in the Netherlands which does local level climate adaptation capacity building through collective and experiential learning (fun and interactive activities). Masters thesis, Linkedin profile.

  1. Asiya Odugleh-Kolev – person with interests in international development aspects of DA

Asiya is responsible for WHO’s efforts to mainstream community engagement through a “whole-person whole-systems approach”. Her current focus is on the linkages between community building, deep adaption of human systems, awareness-based systemic research and health.  And how an understanding of these connections opens new pathways for reimagining health systems capable of contributing to the health and well-being of its own workforce and the populations they serve. Asiya embraces a multidisciplinary background bridging: adult learning; anthropology; community development, journalism, nursing; public health; and volunteerism & youthwork.  In 2017, she was awarded Honorary Membership of the Faculty of Public Health, UK.

  1. Skeena Rathor – interest including the social justice, activism and political dimensions of DA

Co-founder of Extinction Rebellion, Skeena  is a mum of three who lives in Stroud, where she runs the Politics Kitchen and is a co-founder of Compassionate Stroud. She is also an Independent District Councillor, a trauma release therapist, and teaches Pilates, Yoga, Feldenkrais, Garuda, Energy Medicine and heart-math.

  1. Ian Roderick – person representing a major funder or host charity

Ian is the director of The Schumacher Institute for Sustainable Systems. His first degree was in Mathematics with Physics and then obtained an MSc in Operational Research and an MSc in Responsibility & Business Practice. He started his career at the Building Research Establishment before heading up strategic forecasting for a large American multinational company. He then co-founded a successful software company, which was sold in 2000. Since then he has pursued interests in applying systems sciences to problems in environmental and social justice.  

  1. Jessica Canham – person with interests including the communications dimensions of DA

Jessica has been working in education and media in the Caribbean, Asia and North American for over 25 years, with an emphasis on environment, culture and social justice media projects. She has been the field producer for international TV broadcasters covering stories in Latin America and the Caribbean. (Including for City TV, PBS, Discovery Channel, The Travel Channel, VisionTV, BETJ, CBC & others)
Jessica is also the Co-Director of Caapi Cottage Retreats, a transformational retreat centre on the edge of a mountain rainforest in Dominica. The mission here is to co-create and host transformational experiences including wellness & yoga, meditation groups, student groups, plant medicine workshops, artist retreats and more.

  1. Katie Carr – person with interests including the educational dimensions of DA

Founding member of the DAF Core Team, and has been instrumental to the development of the theory and practice that became DA facilitation. Katie has spent nearly all her working life in education, including professional training and development, adult and community education, higher education, youth work, and, from 2004-2018, working with primary and secondary schools in the state sector in England. For five years she was the Director of a small charity working with teachers and school leaders to embed critical pedagogy, sustainability, and global citizenship education into their work with children and young people..

  1. Stephen G. Wright – person with interests including the psychospiritual aspects of DA

Following an early career in nursing and academia, Stephen developed a strong interest in spiritual matters and the connection with wellbeing. He is now an interfaith minister, and the spiritual director and trustee for the Sacred Space Foundation, a retreat and guidance center. Stephen also offers spiritual guidance as well as support in developing the practice of healing, spiritual care, conflict resolution and leadership to individuals and organisations. He has written several books on the nature of healing relationships and spiritual awakening, and is the founder of the St. Kentigern School for Contemplatives.

  1. Matthew Painton – person from the DA Facilitators’ Group 

Matthew has degrees in Philosophy and Religion and Agroforestry. As a student he was involved in anti-apartheid and LGBTQI activism. He has lived and worked in countries in Africa, Asia and Europe primarily as a seeker of wisdom, whilst working as an English teacher and environmentalist. For the past decade he has been coaching, but lost heart for coaching success and well-being in a broken system. Since 2018 he’s been collaborating within the DA ecosystem to develop and offer Deep Adaptation coaching and facilitation. He helped develop and launch the DA Guidance website and nurtures the community of guides.

Correct at 20 December 2022

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