With a background in fine arts, Sabina was involved in several community initiatives that used media and theatre to empower young people and the marginalised. In 2006, when she stumbled upon the concept of permaculture, she was immediately drawn to it, and was interested to pursue a PDC. Eager to find out more, she looked for initiatives in Malaysia, but didn't find a single project. PDC's and flights abroad were too expensive, so she planted her first permaculture seed. It was a seed of intention … to someday, hopefully in the very near future, be able to do a PDC abroad.
Two years later, she was invited by the US government to be a participant of the International Visitor Leadership Programme. A tailor made, fully sponsored, exposure programme was designed for her based on her interest in permaculture & community development. For three weeks, she travelled to 6 different states in the US and visited amazing projects, and spoke to people behind the scenes. These were life transforming encounters, and the turning point arrived when she completed her Permaculture & Ecovillage Design Course while still in the US.
In early 2009, two months after coming back from the US, she left her life and work in the bustling city of Kuala Lumpur and moved back to her home town in Batu Arang. In this village, she found a farm house for rent, and began to put what she had learnt into practice. There was a need to build community and spread the knowledge of permaculture. So, when one of her co-teachers from the US, Doug Crouch volunteered to come and teach permaculture, she jumped at the opportunity and in April 2009, the first ever PDC in Malaysia was held in her new found premises. Now, exactly two years later, Embun Pagi, the permaculture education & demonstration site that she founded continues to run PDC courses and exemplify a small scale permaculture design.
Like in Australia, she hopes that 'Permaculture' will one day be a household term in Malaysia … and even further in time, perhaps it will be so deeply integrated into our lives, that there will be no need for a name, or a PDC.