|I have really enjoyed my time as Registrar of the Discovering Herbal Medicine course. In fact, I have been working for the DHM continuously for the last 22 years! The course originated from the College of Phytotherapy, then located in a village called Bodle Street Green, near to Hailsham in East Sussex. It was a beautiful location – a large mansion and extensive gardens with an impressive medicinal herb garden.|
|In those days, the course was known as the “One Year Course” in herbal medicine and was designed by renown herbalist, Hein Zeylstra, Principal of the College, as a course for people with a general interest in herbal medicine course. It evolved into what we know today as the “Discovering Herbal Medicine” course. Over 400 students have passed through my hands and many have remained in touch to this day. Some have gone on to become herbal practitioners through further study.
Since New Vitality Tuition took over the course in 2005, over 600 people have attended DHM Seminars and Workshops. I love dealing with people, so the job has been perfect for me – I shall miss the students and the contact with herbal medicine. However, I am still in contact with my herbal friends and will continue to use herbal medicine for myself and my furry friend Indie, who has a regular doggy dose of slippery elm to keep him going.
Our new Registrar Sylvie Marusic says:
|I very much welcome the opportunity of being the Registrar of the Discovering Herbal Medicine (DHM) Course. It will keep me in touch with the herbal world which I love. I have been interested in herbs for as long as I can remember: my Uncle in Croatia was a self-taught amateur herbalist. Croatian people are very aware of the healing properties of herbs and gather them from the wild, grow them in their gardens or buy them in local markets. Although I have always lived in UK, my parents were from Croatia and we spent our summer holidays there.|
|My uncle used all the old herbal favourites: St John’s wort, Thyme, Lemon balm, Wormwood, Calendula etc. About 15 years ago I became ill with fatigue and that is when, seeking a herbalist, I met Ann Walker and she was able to help me regain my strength using some of these herbs along with others. When a part-time dispensing job came available in her Clinic in Reading, I jumped at the chance and worked with her for around seven years.
Over the years I have acquired a range of skills that will be helpful in my new post as DHM Course Registrar. Some years ago, I had a 2-year stint with Virgin at Heathrow, checking in cabin crew. which needed administrative skills, but particularly relevant to the DHM Course, is the experience I gained from working for Reading Borough Council. Here I was dealing with the training programmes for 1-5 day courses for Council staff. The topics varied from interviewing skills, to health and safety, to self-defence training. The work involved sourcing trainers, drawing up programmes and all the nitty gritty of room booking, liaison with speakers, publicity etc. Because it was so ‘full-on’, I eventually changed jobs to work for the West Berkshire NHS Trust in the Stop Smoking Service as Team Leader at the Royal Berkshire Hospital, where I stayed for about 5 years.
Having moved two years ago to the Forest of Dean with my partner, Jenny (and our four cats), I had to give up herbal dispensing, but I do now have a large half-acre garden, where I am developing a patch of medicinal plants. I have made oils, infusions and tincture from herbs as well as using external applications of them for burns and injuries. I love experimenting. The Forest of Dean is only 50 metres from our house, so we are surrounded by herbs. I look forward to helping others to learn about herbal medicine through the Discovering Herbal Medicine Course.