Heidi Rose is a founding director of Circlewise CIC. She has been facilitating ‘council’ listening circles for over 25 years since living, training and working at the leading centre for council training in California; The Ojai Foundation.
Heidi is also a qualified Psychotherapeutic Counsellor, Eco Therapist, Interior Alignment and Shinrin-Yoku practitioner and is currently training as a Wilderness Rites of Passage Guide; she is also trained in suicide prevention.
Over the years she has brought deep listening circles to a variety of settings in person and online, from intentional community or families, to one to one, therapeutically and in her marriage—she has also held circles for the wider community with the Woods for Wellness project, that offers council circles on many subjects in a woodland setting, council training and facilitation in schools with young people, parents and teachers.
She has a passion and devotion to the power, wisdom and simplicity held in the ancient practice of sitting in a circle, listening and sharing from our hearts.
Director & Facilitator
Sam Kouzarides grew up home-educated in nature and a vibrant learning community. After studying and working in conservation and environmental education he found his vocation in nature-connection mentoring.
Supported by training in nature-connection facilitation and lifestage honouring and rites of passage, Sam leads nature-based courses, events and youth mentoring programs, teaches nature studies and bushcraft and offers one-to-one mentoring.
Sam had been involved with introducing the Way of Council to schools in Devon and holds council circles in nature connection programs and for the land-based community in which he lives. He is continually inspired by the openness these spaces create and the support they offer within a diverse range of settings.
Sam is passionate about exploring our nature as humans, rediscovering a more connective culture and tending our relationship to the natural world. He brings a playful element to awaken the child in all of us and likes nothing more than a good adventure.
Ambă Lucy Chenery
Director, Council Facilitator & Project Support
Ambă Lucy first experienced the Way of Council in 2021 and, since then, has been continually impacted by the connection it brings. She is passionate about council’s simple yet influential nature, the power of listening deeply and how being witnessed—exactly as we are—can create an experience of shared humanity. She particularly loves offering circles for young adults, for mixed generations and for exploring life’s thresholds.
Alongside sitting in circle herself and taking part in the Circles in Education workshops in 2022, she has primarily held circles in secondary school and college environments—she is now beginning to offer more adult circles. From this journey, she has seen first-hand how circles can profoundly and accessibly support people from all walks of life.
Ambă Lucy has a background in Arts, Education and Wellbeing and, whilst training to be a hairdresser, is a freelance creative copywriter, workshop facilitator, visual content curator and project administrator. She is excited by experiential learning and, when facilitating council, enjoys weaving in her interest in embodiment, movement and nervous system regulation; she also loves dancing, singing and being in nature.
Judy is a highly experienced English consultant and lecturer committed to developing a value- based culture of learning and development for children and young people of all ages.
Trained as a primary school teacher, Judy has worked as a senior leader, local authority school improvement consultant and, for many years, as the Primary Adviser for the National Literacy Trust. She continues to lecture in English at Plymouth Marjon University and works nationally as a freelance trainer and consultant committed to opening up the treasures and delights of reading, writing and language to pupils of all ages.
Judy is passionate about bringing circle practices into school and university learning communities to support teachers and pupils in empathetic listening and communication skills to underpin a curriculum where every individual’s experiences and gifts are valued. She believes that learning communities which have empathy and relatedness at their heart give secure foundations for our pupils to support their learning and development as citizens of the world and culture makers of the future.
She lives on Dartmoor in the shadow of Haytor and is currently reading All Those Barbarians by Martin Shaw.
Co-founder & Advisor
Chukumeka is the Founder CEO of Action to Prevent Suicide CIC. He is a suicide prevention trainer specialising in Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Trainer (ASIST) and SafeTalk. He is also a Compassion Circles facilitator, overall mental health and wellbeing trainer and a Health and Wellbeing Coach for the NHS.
Following ventures in the catering business, he retrained as a Holistic Deep Tissue Massage therapist, studied esoteric philosophy and was a volunteer probationary Christian-Buddhist Monk for 4 years. Following re-training as an assistant paramedic for the ambulance service, he then resigned to read Social Work. He has also been a criminal drugs support worker and a Quaker prison chaplain.
For the last 9 years of his employed life, he worked for the NHS as a Community Development Worker, Equality and Diversity Adviser and in health promotion as a trainer and Health Improvement Specialist. He has co-authored a chapter in a book aimed at GP’s working with mental health (Psychiatry) across different cultures. Furthermore, he is a registered Independent Social Worker and a part-time lecturer at the University of Plymouth, Exeter and previously Bath and works as a therapeutic mentor in mental health.
Council Facilitator & Admin Support
Jenna is a qualified teacher and has worked across both primary and secondary schools. She has a deep interest in helping people flourish which led her to pursue a Masters in Leadership for Wellbeing in Education and worked for three years on a care farm. What was apparent from both these experiences was the immense value to our wellbeing of creating safe spaces where one feels seen and heard. It was therefore no surprise that she fell in love with council and holding circles and decided to train in this.
Jenna is also a Nature Connection Facilitator, Mentor and Eco Therapist where she aims to cultivate the quality of deep listening that council promotes in relationship to self, others and the more-than-human world.
Annie has had a love of the Way of Council since being introduced to the practice 15 years ago when she was living in an intentional land based community and looking for a way to improve communication and nourish relationships within the community.
She found in council a form and holding for the kind of courageous and heartful communication that had always felt so important to her. Since this time, Annie has sat in hundreds of circles and facilitated council for family and friends as well as in schools and other settings, including the Woods for Wellness project. She is passionate about authentic communication and about modelling this for our children and young people.
Supported by a number of trainings in council facilitation, as well as many years of meditation practice and mothering and a strong connection to nature, Annie aims to create safe and deep spaces for the alchemy and healing that can happen when we sit in circle and speak and listen from our hearts. Annie lives in the wilds of Dartmoor with her partner, two children and lots of animals!
My introduction to the Way of Council came about while I was living and working in a learning centre in Devon. As a part of our weekly schedule we would sit in circle and have the opportunity to speak and hear others. I clearly remember how unfamiliar it felt to anything else I had experienced before. The circles gave me a profound new way to relate to myself and others.
I did some council training which lead me to join the Circlewise team who were offering council to students at a local school. Over the past few years I've gained experience in facilitating circles in school, small organisations, a regular men's group and outdoor learning days for young people. My experience so far has shown me what an adaptable and accessible tool council can be in, so much so that I use this practice in my own life as a communication tool with my partner, friends, family and those I live with.
Rooh Star is a curious soul who likes to ask big questions. She has a remembering deep in her bones of a time when humans lived in harmony with the land, her creatures and each other. She is committed to working both practically and energetically to make this remembering real once more. She has been involved in environmental activism, travelled the country for years with a hand cart and built herself a turf roofed roundhouse. She is a founding member of two off grid, low impact communities in South Devon. Alongside her choice to live a simple off-grid life she has explored many healing modalities as well as training in nursing, religious studies, Shakti Dance, permaculture, sustainable land use, nature connection and more! She has been part of the holding team for many events, including women’s initiatory journeys and Earth Activist Trainings. Rooh is also an occasional singer, songwriter and performer.
Rooh is a director of Stories for Change, who run transformational and support groups rooted in presence, embodiment and improvisation.
She was introduced to the Way of Council by Rob Dreaming in 2006 and has been sitting in and holding circles regularly ever since.
Rooh brings her earthy practicality, her songs, her sense of humour and her love of the land to the spaces she holds. She loves working with Circlewise and looks forward to meeting you around the fire.
Over the last 50 years I have worked as a school teacher, a professional gardener and a counsellor. My hobbies are stone carving, tennis, walking and chess.
After decades of being involved with various forms of psychotherapy and counselling, I am so pleased to have found Circlewise. It offers a very special opportunity to sit in a circle, often in nature around a fire and share your truth with others without fear of interruption or judgement. I love the simplicity and power of Circles.