INNERGARDEN – nature-based practices for holistic development of youth workers


Training course for Youth workers

INNERGARDEN – nature-based practices for holistic development of youth workers

Mazury lake, Poland

11 – 20.07.2023

 INNERGARDEN – nature-based practices for holistic development of youth workers Learning for change


For more information reed below


About the project

InnerGarden will provide a space to contemplate on the value of our work as youth workers and to experience the powerful transformation that can happen both within us and the world around us when we recognize the importance of what we do. The project is designed to present an innovative integrated approach to the holistic development of youth workers, which combines elements from nature-based practices, positive psychology and education, ecopsychology, social work, and personal development. By going through the whole process on their own, participants will have a chance to experience benefits for their own development and learn how to provide similar experiences to young people and other youth workers.


InnerGarden combines deep inner knowledge from indigenous practices and evidence-based science in order to reach a deep understanding of the developmental needs of human beings in every stage of their lives, so that they can get closer to their wholeness. Nowadays, in the ever changing society, youth is lacking inner cohesion and wholeness. Thus, youth workers will become ready to support them as they will gain the competences to develop and facilitate practices that lead in that direction and they will contribute to the holistic growth of their target groups.

  • To provide knowledge and skills connecting positive psychology, positive education, personal development, and social work
  • To explore models and theories from Ecocentric development, Nature-based learning
  • To practice nature-based methods which provoke self-discovery, thus facilitating personal and professional development
  • To develop competences that enable youth workers to work with youth on complex personal challenges, thus enabling them to reach their full potential
  • To practice and equip the youth workers with tools and techniques for working with youth (especially disadvantaged one) for their personal development, social inclusion and realization
  • To explore alternative practices for addressing developmental needs of disadvantaged youth
  • Self-discovery and resourcefulness – understanding ourselves and supporting others’ self-development process
  • Somatic and kinesthetic learning – embodiment as a method for deepening connection to oneself and provoking kinesthetic learning experiences
  • Physical exercises – practices based on yoga and other traditions that can be implemented in everyday life
  • Outdoor creativity and nature – connecting with the self, nature, other people, and the outside world, organise open air learning and creativity activities
  • Non-Religious Spirituality – exploring secret-sacred elements, sharing experiences, understanding human spirituality in different cultural backgrounds, exploring rituals and ceremonies
  • Meditation and mindfulness – tools for focusing and balancing attention, emotions and consciousness.
  • Working with values
  • Nature based methods
  • Experiential learning
  • Methods for self-development
  • Workshops development and delivery
  • Group and solo time in nature
  • The Way of Council
  • Holistic Practices and self-healing
  • Living as a community


  • you are a resident of Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain or Turkey
  • you have relevant professional experience – the participants should have one of the following roles: youth or social workers, youth leaders, educational and career counsellors, teachers, general educators, trainers, mentors, coaches, educational nature guides, people who care for people
  • you feel a strong calling to participate in this course and have strong and relevant motivation for joining the process. The motivation should be a blend of personal and professional factors. We are looking for people who feel comfortable with being in nature (as the topic will be addressed through nature-based practices), who can immerse in natural learning environments, be willing to explore body based methods and non-religious spirituality
  • you are over 21 years old and have at least communicative level of English to enable full participation in the program.
  • you are available to participate in the whole program. It means coming later or leaving earlier is not allowed. The program will run long hours during the day and also offer some night activities.
  • you are ready to commit to follow our strict SOBRIETY POLICY (to refrain from using any consciousness altering substance – alcohol, cannabis, any drug etc. – for the whole duration of the course)
  • you want to commit to engage in the whole process of the course (if selected) including the ONLINE PREPARATION (includes articles and videos to familiarize with the theoretical background, as well as nature-based practices to do at home in the weeks prior to departure) and the FOLLOW UP COMMITMENTS (to create at least one dissemination activity in your local community – organising a workshop, writing an article etc. – after the course).



If you want to participate in this training course, we invite you to fill in the application form available at this link: APPLICATION FORM


The deadline for applications submission is 30 April 2023 (included).

Detailed Call for participants –  INFOPACK



Ognian Gadoularov (Bulgaria), Anastasia Priyamvada Charitidou (Greece), Tina Kovacic (Slovenia)

 INNERGARDEN – nature-based practices for holistic development of youth workers Learning for changeOgnian Gadoularov (trainer) is an international trainer – member of trainer’s network of SALTO EuroMed, member of the national team of trainers of the Bulgarian National Agency “Erasmus       +”(HRDC).                  (https:// He has prepared and conducted over 20 international training within the Youth in Action and Erasmus + Programs, including TCP/TCA training for Romanian, Latvian, Cyprus and Bulgarian national agencies and SALTO training for SALTO Inclusion. Ognian is a passionate naturalist, rock climber and expert of wildlife, birds and forests. For 13 years, he has been working in the field of non-formal education and personal development. Ognian supports people to unfold their full potential in life and to discover themselves. He is a trainer with interests and experience in meditation, yoga and energy practices. His favourite topics are personal development, self-discovery, responsible consumption, sustainability and environmental protection. He lives as an activist for cultural evolution, re-sacredtising life and reconnecting people with the more-than-human-world.

Ognian is part of the Nature-based Wholing and Self-healing Wild Mind Training Programme (WMTP) at Bill Plotkin’s Animas Valley Institute, Colorado, USA.


 INNERGARDEN – nature-based practices for holistic development of youth workers Learning for changeAnastasia Priyamvada Charitidou, MSc, BSc (project manager/ trainer) is an educator, youth worker, and researcher on somatics and positive psychology with a focus on self-compassion and mindfulness. She facilitates “holistic ensoulment and embodiment practices” a technique and a process based on an experiential approach that explores the relationships of the individual with their “wholeness”, their interactions with the group, and their relating to “All that Is”.Her contribution synthesizes theory and practices from contemporary approaches such as Positive Psychology, Pedagogy, Physical Theater, and Healing and Therapeutic modalities and she incorporates values and elements from wisdom traditions. Anastasia has studied Pedagogy (BSc Major), Theater (Diploma), and Self-development. Her Master’s degree was in Physical Education with her MSc thesis on the positive effects of combined holistic exercises on emotional and psychological well-being.

She has worked as a professional actress for over 10 years. She has a sincere and deep interest in equine- assisted learning. Anastasia aspires to and believes that she can share her own inspirations, communion, immense appreciation, and gratitude for nature and for all living beings. To that end, she brings her organizational skills and a wide palette of practices, activities, and methods as well as her sincere enthusiastic engagement.


 INNERGARDEN – nature-based practices for holistic development of youth workers Learning for changeTina Kovačić (trainer) is an embodied facilitator that has extensive experience with designing, organizing, and facilitating educational programs and workshops on a national and international level for the past 10 years. Coming from a diverse background, authentic leadership is her default way of living, not just working. Finding strengths in every situation, being able to learn from each and every individual on a spiritual, physical, emotional, cognitive, or mental level, and at the same time staying present and aware of her own internal processing is something she strives for on a daily basis. She has participated in over 20 Erasmus+ projects on different levels since 2019. Her passions for nature, sustainability, and movement are a silver lining in her work with emotions, communication, body awareness, and on a more cognitive level also neuro-linguistic programming. Her interest and experiences in Non-violent communication, Conflict transformation, Multi-intelligence, Embodiment, Art and Dance therapy, Process-oriented psychology, Theater, and Contact improvisation together with experiences from youth work are invaluable assets for this project. As a very dynamic trainer, she brings positive energy and enhancement of user experience even to the most mundane lectures.