Ego Lemos and Lachlan McKenzie have worked together as friends and colleagues since 2001 when Lachlan first volunteered with Permatil in Timor-Leste. They are both passionate advocates for social equality and justice, food sovereignty and environmental restoration, with permaculture being the perfect method for advancing and achieving those goals. Together they wrote and coordinated the production of the original Permaculture Guidebook from Timor-Leste published in 2008 and have continued that partnership for the Tropical Permaculture Guidebook.
Ego Lemos (Dip. Permaculture and MA Community Development) works as the Executive Director of Permatil. His previous position was the National Adviser on Curriculum Development for Basic Education on Arts & Culture and Permaculture School Gardens, for the Ministry of Education of Timor-Leste. He is also a lecturer in Sustainable Agriculture and Public Arts & Culture at the University of Timor-Leste. He has received several international awards for his national contribution to music, art & culture and community development.
Ego is the founder-coordinator of the Sustainable Agriculture Network and Organic Agriculture Movement in Timor-Leste. He is also the founder-coordinator of Permaculture Timor-Leste (PERMATIL), as well as the founder-counsellor of the PERMASCOUT and PERMA-YOUTH movements.
He co-authored ‘Permaculture Gardens for Kids’ produced by PERMATIL, as well as both editions of the Tropical Permaculture Guidebook. He is sole author of the ‘Training Manual for Agro-biodiversity in Timor-Leste (GIZ-AMBERO) and the Arts and Culture section of the National Curriculum for Basic Education Grad 1 – 6 (Ministry of Education).
Apart from his Diploma of Permaculture Design, Ego also has certificates in Monitoring Evaluation and Learning (MDF Pacfic-Indonesia Consultancy) and Integrating Nutrition in Primary Education Curriculum (FAO). His Ted Talk: ‘School Gardening to Tackle Malnutrition’ illustrates his work, music and why embodying permaculture within the school curriculum is so important.
Lachlan McKenzie (Dip. Permaculture) has been immersed in permaculture since completing his Permaculture Design Course (PDC) in 1994 in Burra, South Australia. After many years practicing and designing, Lachlan completed several advanced permaculture courses and an internship at Djanbung Gardens Permaculture Centre with Robyn Francis. His permaculture adventures took him to Timor-Leste in 2001 working for 5 years with Timorese NGO Permatil and consulting for International NGOs providing trainings (including PDCs), writing curriculums, developing work plans, creating educational materials and demonstration sites. This culminated in co-writing and producing the Permaculture Guidebook from Timor-Leste in three languages. An accompanying bi-lingual Permaculture Facilitator’s Handbook and permaculture educational DVD were created working with IDEP Foundation in Bali and post-tsunami Aceh, Indonesia.
From 2008 – 2015 Lachlan worked in northern Australia with school gardens, community gardens and teaching permaculture courses. He then ventured to the UK and Europe for 2 years, volunteering with Permaculture Association Britain, and working with permaculture projects and permaculture education in the UK, France and Portugal. He is a core member of the International Permaculture Education Network (IPEN) project and on the secretariat team for the global Permaculture Collaborative Laboratory (CoLab) project.
Now back in South Australia Lachlan is continuing with those roles and with this guidebook project, as well as being active in the local community and getting a garden growing!