Hochschule für Agrar- und Umweltpädagogik in Wien (HAUP)

The HAUP offers since November 2012 an extra-occupational Master in "Green Care". This is the first of its kind in Europe!

ULMUS has been asked to contribute with lectures within the module "Basics Green Care". Besides we want to "feed" the students with actual and practic-based questions out of our network.

In our opinion, the Master plays a crucial role towards a new generation of practitioners and researchers inseide the Green-Care-field. This will be a huge contribution to a healthy developmetn and professionalisation of existing and still-to-come GreenCare-concepts.

Green Care is a term that is used in a wide sense and collects different kind of activities inside the combined fields of "Green & Care", "Green & Health" and "Green & Education". Examples are:

- care farming

- AAT - animal assisted therapy

- gardening therapy

- educational foresting

- educational farming and many more

The European Projects "DIANA" and "SOFAR" have produced glossaries to secure unity of use and understanding of related terminoogy. You will find the glossary in the link-list on our page or follow the link here.

"Nature and Environment Education" - Hikingpath

In the Netherlands NME (Natuur-Milieu-Educatie = Nature and Environment Education) is a part of the overall educational system which aims on lecturing children in certain aspects of nature- and environment-preservation and ecology.

Inside that framwork ULMUS is managing a project in cooperation with the Noorderhoeve, the HHNK and the municipality of Bergen. Aim of the project is to realize a hiking-path that runs through the water-retrieving area "Over t´Hek", that is to contain educational and recreational elements to obtain "playful learning"-effects. Still in the early stages, the hikingpath and its elements are to be designed by the landscape-architect Maria Snel from "Yottaa" at the moment. We expect to have the pre-designes ready before christmas.

The finalization and opening of the path are planned middle of 2013. 


The Noorderhoeve is one of the oldest care farms in the Netherlands and part of the Dutch Camphill-movement. The farm exists since over 30 years and is actively engaged in daycare, workguidance and accompanied living as living- and workingcommunity, employing over 20 co-workers and over 50 "assistant-farmers".

ULMUS and the Noorderhoeve enjoy a structural partnership and work strategically together in different projects to ensure continuity, development and innovation of the farm and its endeavors.

On-going projects are the developmetn of the "Landgtu Wempe", the NME-hiking-path and the EU-project "DIANA", which finishes this year. Furthermore the Noorderhoeve was involved in several other projects for rural development and watermanagement in coopertion with the HHNK, the Province of North-Holland and ULMUS.

Wageningen University and Research (WUR)

WUR is one of the leading research- and educationinstitutions in Europe in the fields of food, foodproduction, livingspace, living-style, circumstances of life and health. WUR employs over 6.500 researchers and teaches over 10.000 students.

ULMUS and WUR enjoy a structurl partnership and work together in different national and international projects.

An on-going project is W.U.R.K.S. (WUR Knowledge Sharing). This project was inititated by WUR in 2012. Aim of the project is to develop a guideline/handboek to bring all existing courses for "CareFarming" in the Netherlands on the same didactical and theoretical level.

Other on-going projects are the EU-partnership projects "SOFIEU" (see own description) and "DIANA".

Andere laufende Projekte in Zusammenarbeit mit der WUR sind die Europäischen Partnerschatsprojekte SOFIEU (siehe eigene Beschreibung in diesem Portfolio) und das EU-Projekt "DIANA", das 2012 zum Abschluss kam.


"Warmonderhof" and "Warmonderhof Opleidingen" is a nationally and internationally known school that educates its students since 1947 in bio-dynamic farming and horticulture.

Since more than 10 years it also offers the course for "carefarming" being the first school in Europe to run such a course. It is still one of the very few schools in the world today, where this course, that qualifies "carefarmers" on vocational level is given.

ULMUS and the Warmonderhof enjoy a structural partnership and work together on development, coordination and innovation of the educational offer in this sector. ULMUS serves in different functions such as coordination of the course "care-farming", teaching classes and project-coordination on European level.

HHNK (Hoogheemraadschap Hollands Noorderkwartier)

HHNK - Hoogheemradschap Hollands Noorderkwartier is one of the many Dutch watermanagement-departments. These departments are autonomically organized bureaus that function a lot like state-departments. They even raise their own tax. These departments deal with all water-related issues in the Netherlands, which circulate mostly around topics like security, watermanagement, quality and regulation.

ULMUS enjoys a long-term cooperation with the HHNK and has worked with them on several different projects: 

Over t´Hek: This was a project that aimed on creating a water-retrieving area to be able to set water-regulation standards for the national goals for 2050.

Projekt Pijlkruid: This project was executeed inside the framework of the KRW (Kader Richtlijn Water) which is a European Regulatory to ensure waterquality, bio-diversity and fish-migration. In that context ULMUS realized the implementation of appr. 800 meters of so called nature-friendly-watersides.

De groene Brink: Another project related to the KRW-framework that aimed on implementation of another 400 meters nature-friendly-watersides.

"Landgut Wempe"

The "Landgut Wempe" (an old manor called after its former owner) is located in Koedijk (The Netherlands). It is a roughly 100 year old farm-complex on the southern edge of the protected nature- and landscapearea "Geestmerambacht" in the north of Alkmaar.

The farm and its land has been assigned to the DLG (Dienst Landelijk Gebiet) after the death of the last owner. The DLG, a department of the Dutch ministery of agriculture, planned to develop a project that focuses both on care and landscape-preservation for the surrounding area.

ULMUS has been aware of this plan since 2011. In 2012 the Noorderhoeve were looking for a intermediate housing-solution for some of its clients due to a delayed building-proces. There we linked to needs with eachother and sat together with both the DLG and the Noorderhoeve to finf out if they could find each other.

The result was magnificent: the DLG and the Noorderhoeve signed a temporary agreement of usage for the farm-building, where up to 7 clients of the Noorderhoeve can find a place to live for the period of appr. 2 years. In that time, both agreed, they will work out a development-plan for the whole manor. 

ULMUS have been involved as projectcoordinator for the Noorderhoeve and played a mediating role between all involved partners.

"Buiten School"

"Buiten School" (dutch: "out of school") is a concept developed by ULMUS that we are realizing in different forms with different partners.

The intention was to create an educational program, where students of different age-groups can learn relation- and experience-based about topics like biology, waterecology, biological cycles etc) by actually being and working outside, e.g. on a farm or in a forest. Simultanousely the didactical method implies working with personal development - issues of the children, like social behaviour, moral attitude and self-esteem.

Many children suffer the loss of age-based development-input in the nowadays structure of a normal school-day: Group-dynamics and personal development are hardly adressed issues and the lessons are mostly appealing on cognitive abilities and are theoretical and abstract. Additionally the children are forced to sit still a long stretch of time parallel to physical classes being removed from time-schedules on more and more schools: physical motion, body-coordination, sport and other forms of natural output of energy, which are very important for all children, are neither being promoted nor provided.

We see great risks in that way of teaching children, because it is actually denying other forms of intellect (cognitive ability is just one form of intelligence; nowadays far more types of intellect are known, e.g. physical intelligence, social intelligence, artistic intelligence, musical intelligence and more). Furthermore we can see, that children are signalizing shortcomings on physical education and practice as well, given that we dare to interpret indicators like over-weight and ADHD a little different or better: a little more holistic.

"Out of school" wants to offer a platform for outside school activities that yet teach topics from "inside the classroom", by making them practically experiencable. By doing that we are also considering individual key-processes and group-dynamics as it comes to personal development, to enhance the class-cohersion as well as the identity and self-esteem of each individual.

Our concept is momentarely used in 3 different projects with different partners:

- integrationprogramm for mental weak and disabled youth that drop out of school without diploma and with no option for further education. 

- "Learn-Camps" for children between the age 8 - 14. Those camps are offered during school-periodes for class-trips, work-weeks etc as well as during vacation-periodes to provide meaningful leisuretime while parents are working.

- Daycare for small children (age 0 - 4) to give a relief to working parents by not only looking after the children but by fostering the ideal development of the child.

Rural Entrepreneurship

In cooperation with the Warmonderhof Opleidingen" ULMUS is coordinating and managing a European Partnership Project with the same title as above.

Aim of the project is to develop and implement a curriculum for a professional training course in “Rural Entrepreneurship”. 

Experience from Warmonderhof Opleidingen in the Netherlands has shown that level 4 programmes  often deal with content that is either taught too superficially due to time constraints or they cover content that includes  knowledge and competences that relate more to a level 5 programme (Foundation Degree). In addition in interviews graduates of the level-4 programmes “Biodynamic Farming” and “Rural  Entrepreneur – Care Farm” (Warmonderhof Opleidingen) indicated that they experienced certain challenges in the area of entrepreneurship. 

Some of the common challenges that have been identified relate to:

interpersonal and social issues on the farm and in the farm community

interdisciplinary communication within the wider network of the farm

the lack of entrepreneurial skills regarding capacity building, strategic planning and implementation. 

farm diversification opportunities

farm identity and its use in marketing and communication

Out of the aforementioned challenges arose the question whether an extension course could be developed to address these particular entrepreneurial needs of agricultural professionals. 

This extension course would focus on teaching practical tools to strengthen the abilities and broaden the range of skills of the individual farmer. Certain tools could be used to prevent particular issues from arising in the first place, especially when implemented in the planning phase of a new farm enterprise.

Furthermore, the personal development of the individual could be strengthened by applying the ethical, moral and idealistic foundations of biodynamic agriculture in a more practical way during their training – the identity of the farm and the farmer are inextricably intertwined.

As a result of these considerations we have decided to develop and implement a curriculum for a training course in “Rural Entrepreneurship”. The idea for this new curriculum has been shared with several partners, colleagues, organisations and professionals in the field, and the response has been overwhelmingly positive – there is a clear need for further development in this area.

The term RE (working term) is a term of wide comprehension. It evolves from different yet cohesive areas of expertise that all play an important role in the daily struggles of a bio-dynamic entrepreneur in his/hers personal and professional environment. To be able to withstand the challenges he is facing, all areas offer certain tools and methods, he can combine to a strong set of skills, which will qualify him to fulfill his goals and vision.

This is the main goal of this project: to develop and implementate a curriculum that highlights the tools of each area and makes it accessible/available to the professional.

Here we can see, how certain basic skills and knowledge are to be combined with the bio-dynamical aspects of, not only farming, but life in its whole. This opens for a new perspective: the farm as multifunctional platform seen in combination of regional and rural identity and development. Here social needs, related to the direct environment of the farm-organism are seen as part of the identity of the farm, just as personal development-issues of the farmer/entrepreneur have impact on the form and function of the enterprise. Another important skill is to be able to translate this just identified social need into a business-concept that covers financial, social and environmental revenue. To be able to create, communicate and manage all this, combined in one farm-organism we see as the challenge of the next generation of bio-dynamical entrepreneurs - and by developing and offering the planned curriculum we see our contribution to this development.

SOFIEU - Social Farming in Europe

SOFIEU (Social Farming in Europe) is a European Partnership Project initiated in 2011 and coordinated by APCC (Associao Paralesis Cerebral de Coimbra), a major care provider in Portugal.

ULMUS has been introduced to this project through the structural partnership with WUR and forms together with WUR the Duch delegation. 

Aim of the project is to identify national key-issues and forms of Social Farming and to establish a supportive European network to promote Social Farming in all participating countries.

The projectgroup is formed by:

APCC - Portugal, Ponteverde (care-provider, Italy), UCD (University College Dublin, Ireland) and the Dutch delegation WUR/ULMUS.

For more information please visit www.socialfarming.eu

In relation to the project ULMUS will organize a trans-national conference in midth of April 2013 in the Netherlands, that will be held open for everyone who is interested. Further detailed information will follow on our webpage in the section "Upcoming".

technical questions? webmaster@ulmus.eu © Ulmus Projectrealisatie 2012