Envisioning the Future followup to the sept. 29th, 2017 community meeting

After brief introductions from Robert MacKay, Diana Hughes and James Brian, and following the "Open Space" protocol, participants were invited to announce themes they wished to explore, in the context of the RSCT's future. These initiative takers then wrote the name of their theme on a flip-chart sheet and took it to a corner of the room.

Once all the themes had been announced, people who were also interested in exploring a topic, joined the group of their choice, and a good half hour was spent in these groups exchanging views and jotting down bullet points. Some people moved around from group to group while others stayed with the same group all throughout.

After the half-hour brainstorming session was up, one representative from each group presented to the larger group a brief summary of what their group had come up with. In the photo above, Elisa Vander Hout presents the work of the Anthroposophical Hubs group.

1. Vocational Programs

Building on our current programs, RSCT will strive to bring the highest quality of education and training opportunities to people wanting to work out of anthroposophy.

Teacher Education

  • University partnerships
  • Certificate program with a post-secondary space
  • Connection with high schools???
  • Course on alternative education
  • Language of mainstream educational/research/data/new trends
  • Learn from others
  • Fruitful partnerships
  • How to strengthen training: rigour; length; three-month internship; funding streams back and forth with business
  • Going beyond the needs – laboratory; thought leaders
  • Communication skills
  • Support for teachers in schools at the schools
  • Travelling master teachers
  • One-month – offer different ways of professional development/support
  • Quality control – continuing education which meets the needs of experienced teachers

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Warren Cohen at wcohen@rsct.ca


  • Distance; on-site conferences; - global
  • Accreditation – RSCT?; other?; building a portfolio
  • Focus on adult development – (parenting)
  • Child development based out of anthroposophy and specifics re:
  • Steiner – freedom; deeper
  • Developing new eyes to see
  • What lies behind the curriculum
  • “Own in”/what is needed/not transverse – a form – create new form – learn to stand in it
  • Global movement
  • Resources; look like: interactive website?; distance/ on-site: global partnerships; mentors
  • Dispel: not in competition with Waldorf schools, but in support of the movement
  • Develop a “program” with steps of progression

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Marg Beard at kallias@live.com

Parenting Education

  • Pre-natal courses
  • Work with midwives
  • Radio/tv programs on early childhood
  • Parent education led by parents
  • Guided conversations in coffee shops, malls, public spaces, and parks
  • In Waldorf schools, short-term courses on specific child development challenges
  • Webinars
  • Children’s festivals
  • To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Yvonne Philpott at yvonne@philpott.ca
  • Waldorf beyond Cultural/Spiritual Historical Stream
  • Are children just children, or are they to-e-acculturated children?
  • Cross-cultural listening
  • Poly-lingual/poly-cultural
  • Foundation studies: full-time; part-time; distance; indigenous; French

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Les Black at lesblack45@yahoo.ca

Public Education – Outreach

  • A simpler message of anthroposophy
  • Is outreach necessary/appropriate
  • How to reach people “out there” – not always the same
  • Connect
  • Advocacy re public education policy and university curricula
  • Three (3) years: establishment of consultative relationships with
  • Senior policy people in the Ministry of Education;
  • Keynotes at education conferences;
  • Publicly funded academic research projects and pilots
  • Resources: Research & Development group established and funded
  • In three (3) years: new faces coming into RSCT
  • Waldorf teachers speaking downtown (and elsewhere) to adult educators; to parents; to teachers; to the general public
  • Simple characterization of anthroposophy through visible actions in the community; serving the public; speaking to the public/storytelling; social media (?)
  • Doing worthwhile things in the world
  • Concerns….!

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Sandy Sellers at xyris2@gmail.com

Curative/Remedial Education

  • A more robust HEART program with more participants … scholarships
  • Conferences and workshops for parents
  • Remedial week intensive for current teachers
  • Therapeutic/remedial summer camp for children
  • Coordinate with parent education
  • Balance in teaching and curative course
  • Develop regional (global) mentoring/training hubs
  • Education in early years healthy movement

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Siobhan Hughes at info@haltonwaldorf.com


  • The possibility of coming into rhythm with each other
  • Every school needs a eurythmy teacher
  • Eurythmy done in the streets as Rudolf Steiner suggested
  • Eurythmy means beautiful rhythm
  • Intensive courses

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Marianne Else at melse@live.ca

2. Cultural Outreach

Recognizing the contemporary importance of cultivating a wide-spread awareness of anthroposophy, RSCT will undertake various initiatives to support the introduction of anthroposophy into Canadian culture.

Expanding Anthroposophic Art(s)

  • Exhibitions
  • Workshops
  • Seven (7) sacred arts
  • Flowforms

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Regine Kurek at regine@arscura.com

Foundation Studies/Deepening

  • Providing depth and breadth
  • Introductory vs teacher training obligation (?); serving international needs (?); foundation for specialties: seminary; eurythmy; biodynamics; medicine
  • 2nd level?
  • Commitment of students
  • Watered-down by newer initiatives?
  • Distance learning

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Trinh Huynh at hndtrinh@gmail.com

Anthroposophical Counselling and Mentoring of Young People

  • Psychology of body, soul, and spirit
  • Bridging with psychotherapists who work out of pure psychology
  • How – communication skills – deep listening
  • Antidote to current events
  • Mental health
  • Twelve (12) senses
  • Communication
  • Looking for and finding root issues
  • Relevant research of cultural influences
  • Identify needs in current culture
  • Genuine human encounter

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Gene Campbell at genecampbell@sympatico.ca

Anthroposophical Hubs

  • Definition: what is a hub? A mini-Steiner Centre; coffee shop & child care – non-profit or home-based; resources/courses or workshops/lectures; bookstore/library; goal – accessibility to anthroposophy; public library as venue; outpost
  • In three (3) years: many hubs – regional (10) in Ontario; Steiner Centre-based, supported and guided; leadership within hub re support of RSC; under the umbrella; partnerships with other anthroposophically-based people/organization (school, farm, society (ASC))
  • Actions/Resources/Ideas: Toronto Branch; finding individuals to anchor initiatives in different areas; support of RSC Toronto as helper; funding? Or volunteer?? Narrow or broad defining of ‘What is a hub?’; What do people want in the communities? Are all hubs the same? What piece of anthroposophy lives in that hub? Existing communities become recognized (officially) as a hum; profile of hubs

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Elisa Vander Hout at agriculturalrenewalcoop@gmail.com

3. Anthroposophical Service Work

RSCT will expand into various forms anthroposophical service work designed to meet day-to-day needs in Canadian communities out of the unique perspectives and techniques in anthroposophy.

Anthroposophical Childcare

  • Childcares opening in every province/territory/First Nations
  • Knowledgeable leaders collaborating on the first models
  • Connecting childcare with parent education
  • Financial viability for parents
  • Respectable salaries
  • Guidance in provincial licensing process
  • Community of caregivers providing support for each other
  • Anthroposophists – foundation in child development and pedagogy

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Heather Church at church1888@gmail.com

Working with Nature Spirits

  • Be part of teacher education
  • How do we heal the land? Beekeeping; tree conversations; biodynamic gardening; indigenous wisdom; workshops; nature walks; appreciation of nature; social sculpturing
  • How do we work in collaboration with the land?
  • Deepen understanding through study groups

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Veronica Marquez at veronica.marquezv@gmail.com


  • Community integration: meaningful contributions based on life experience and the sharing of human resources; intergenerational living: mutual benefits – i.e., reading support
  • Partnerships with elderly living at home
  • Training for those working with the elderly – should meditations to help with dying
  • Celebrate ageing – change culture
  • Generative: what can we/the elderly give; we have wealth and wisdom to share
  • Sharing: elder/elder and elder/children
  • Mutual respect
  • We need to grow up
  • Change/work on how we present/project ourselves
  • Beyond dependency

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Fiona Hughes at hughes.fionam@gmail.com

Palliative/End of Life Care

  • Newsletter to share community news
  • We need to talk about/demystify death
  • Alternative death and dying rituals
  • Practical/need to know course on death
  • A hospice where we can go to die with support and without medical interventions
  • Death and dying discussion groups: death over dinner/over tea

To continue the conversation and plan next steps, contact Fiona Hughes at hughes.fionam@gmail.com

Soup and Dragon Bread at Hesperus

A few lines about the envisioning meeting from Shirley van Houten-Routledge

"I am quite excited about the wide and all-encompassing vision. I trust the imagination reaches the inspiring heavenly powers also, and will bear fruit in coming times. Keep me informed please!

"In the 50 year history of this campus we can see how the dedication of a small group can sow seeds that mature into a valued enterprise - note the founding of Toronto Waldorf School, Rudolf Steiner Centre, and Hesperus Village. The campus has become a resource centre and contribution to a life style caring for chlldhood, adulthood and elderhood. The vision of Rudolf Steiner Centre is to expand and grow this adult 'centre' contributing to a Canadian human culture, a new way of existence for a society founded on spiritual understanding for all levels of life.

"Inwardly we develop as human beings morally consistent, inspired and carried by individual initiative. Outwardly we become a community, a movement of professional applications and collaboration in all fields of life.^Maybe invisible, but a new human culture already exists globally by engaging thousands of people whose lives have been touched by Rudolf Steiner in spiritual inspiration and its practical applications."

Warmly, Shirley van Houten-Routledge

Thank you all!!

And we know that many who could not attend were there in spirit.

Rudolf Steiner Centre Toronto Three-Year Strategic Plan

The plan will cover the 2018/19, 2019/20 and 2020/21 years and will set out priority objectives designed to move the organization forward toward realizing its ten-year vision. Each priority objective will be further delineated into a series of actions and milestones required to reach the objective. The plan will also include:

  • A three year governance development plan
  • A three year financial plan
  • A three year human resource plan

September, 2017

  • Identify team: Board member(s), RSCT staff which will meet on a regular, biweekly basis to guide the process of developing the strategic plan

September to October, 2017

  • Complete the assessment of strengths and weaknesses (remaining: London, Kingston)
  • Consult with stakeholders (for GTA September 29, Kingston in October)
  • Continue “organic planning” with other community engagement meetings in Canada - where are the resources and people who want to initiate an idea? (Organic Planning uses a process that unfolds naturally through continual focus on common values and consistent communication and dialogue among stakeholders.)

October, 2017

  • Determine goals to achieve. Identify and agree on 5 key objectives

November to December, 2017

  • Develop action plans that specify who is going to do what and by when to achieve each goal and develop associated plans: staffing, budget, marketing, governance

January, 2018

  • Review and assess plan for viability

February, 2018

  • Present strategic plan to Board for final approval


Photos by Richard Chomko

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