living learning education The Holly Foundation was initiated by three former Findhorn Foundation members, Jock Millenson, James Lawson Kelly and Craig Gibsone who share a common interest: expanding the vision, seminal concepts and learnings of the Findhorn Foundation Community beyond its borders in Northern Scotland. Jock is a former academic psychologist with long term interests in radical psychology and communication in community. James is a former non-violent communication trainer and a student of the Course in Miracles. Craig came to the Findhorn Foundation over 30 years ago, was a former focaliser of the Parkside branch of the community, and now specialises in permaculture and teaching ecovillage principles internationally.

For a couple of decades Jock held the vision of a Centre in Greece near the sea that would bring many of the spiritual values, holistic tools and educational processes being developed at the Findhorn Foundation Community and other ecovillages. Jock's vision was “what Findhorn is doing here is too good to keep in Northern Scotland”.  In 2001 Jock discovered a large house in the Pelion region of Greece being used for workshops in the Greek vacation season (last fortnight of July and the month of August) by an Athens psychologist. The house was located on 2 acres of former forest land near the village of Anilio and had been converted for the use of groups up to 30, and with added camping facilities accommodated as many as 50 people. 

Ecovillage training

The venue was quite rough and not of a standard for international workshops, but it had sufficient land to build group spaces and for an organic garden, and therefore had the necessary potential. As the property was unused during the generally fine months of May, June, September and October, Jock proposed to sub rent it during those months. He subsequently entered into an agreement with the Greek psychologist landlord to share the expenses of improving the infrastructure over a period of several years.

2001 saw the implementation of a low key trial run and 2002 saw the first full programme of workshops and retreats with extensive promotion in the UK and the continent under the name of Kalikalos Holidays. Two group spaces were constructed during work camps in 2002 and 2003, a covered patio was created for art workshops, a start was made on permaculture and by 2004 the project was developing a reputation as the “affordable alternative Mediterranean holiday”, with retreats and holistic workshops in: (1) Healing {self and planet}, (2) Personal Creativity, and (3) Self enquiry. 

Love as work in action

In the summer of 2004 Jock fell ill with M.E./CFS, a debilitating syndrome which forced him to withdraw from the project. A caretaker group formed to continue the project in Jock's absence and limped along in 2005, with very little direction and few workshops. At the end of the 2005 season the last individuals associated with the original vision dropped out, and when the Greek psychologist lost his lease on the Anilio property that year, another group with rather different aims stepped in to take on the venue.

Jock recovered from M.E. in the autumn of 2006 and proposed to collaborate or time share with this new group at Anilio, but they proved unreceptive to either of these proposals. Jock therefore began looking around Greece for an alternative venue, but it was not until January that a small hotel on an estate about a mile and a half from the original venue was found which was just affordable and barely sufficient in size. Jock and James decided to form a not-for-profit educational trust whose aims would encompass the rebirth of Kalikalos as a living-learning summer school, embodying many of the principles established at the previous venue, but with a considerably wider educational mandate than an alternative holiday.

Since May 2008 Kalikalos has run as a summer school at this new venue in Kissos village, bringing the insights and concepts of holistic education to its summer programme. It now offers to the public educational seminars, workshops, work camps, conferences and think tanks in the areas of healing, personal creativity and self enquiry all of which are set in the context of authentic community. However, its focus has shifted from holiday vacation to a summer school environment for demonstrating how authentic community can be the vehicle for a sustainable permanent culture of peace and partnership. The Holly Foundation is dedicated to putting into living practice and bringing to the public the insights and concepts developed by the international ecovillage movement. Kalikalos in Greece is the Holly Foundation's first pilot project. If it continues to thrive and develop along the lines envisaged, other Centres may be seeded elsewhere, at locations that will depend on the interests of the individuals drawn into the stream that begins with Kalikalos in Greece. 

The current officers of the Holly Foundation are Jock Millenson, Chairman of the board and director of the Kalikalos project, James Lawson Kelly, Treasurer, Roger Doudna, Secretary, Friederike Ernst, Dorota Owen, provisional trustee, Fabien Barouch, provisional trustee, and Catherine Brislee, provisional trustee. All major decisions of the Holly board are made by full consensus of the voting trustees because we hold consensus to be a soverign equalitarian principle.

Please if you feel drawn to contribute to any aspect of our mission.