Bringing the best of each one to our common work

Joan Sleigh

Project Leader, Research and Training Development

Born and raised in a Camphill Community in Western Cape, Joan Sleigh attended a Waldorf School in Cape Town, South Africa. She relocated to Germany in 1982 and trained as a Waldorf teacher in Witten-Annen. In 1995, she moved back to South Africa with her family, and worked as a class teacher and teacher trainer for 20 years. She was a class teacher at the Michael Oak Waldorf School from 1995 to 2012, and a lecturer at the Center for Creative Education from 2006 to 2012. She served in the Executive Council at the Goetheanum from 2013 to 2020 in Dornach, Switzerland. She is the project leader of the World Social Initiative Forum since 2015.

Milena Kowarik

Networking and Forum Management

Born in Graz, Milena Kowarik studied in a Waldorf School from kindergarten to 12th grade and moved from Austria to Dornach at the age of 15. She graduated with 2 postgraduate degrees under her belt –  Master of Arts in Performance and Master of Arts in Music Pedagogy in Lucerne, Switzerland. To deepen her understanding of Anthroposophy, she attended the Anthroposophic Foundation Course in Stuttgart, Germany. She is currently a cellist and a cello teacher based in Dornach, while also organising conferences and facilitating workshops; working at the Board of the Swiss Anthroposophical Society; and leading the Initiativforum für die Geflüchtete – an organisation that helps refugees who seek residency in Switzerland.

Ami Cochrane

Public Relations, Communications and Training Development

Ami grew up in Australia and Japan, and attended Waldorf schools K-12. Upon graduating, her wish to help conserve the wild led her to study Animal Ecology. Questioning the reductionist approach of modern Science and hoping to gain a more holistic understanding of the world and herself, she travelled to Sweden and enrolled in The International Youth Initiative Program (YIP). At YIP, she developed a growing interest in Anthroposophy and Geothean science. This led her to the Goetheanum in Switzerland where she studied ‘The Goetheanistic Approaches to Science, Art and Social Life.’ She experienced how the arts can enrich and deepen the understanding of theoretical content. Further, it awakened a curiosity in forms of non-verbal expression and their potential to reveal what can be difficult to feel and express through words. 

With a new found curiosity in the role of art in education, Ami is exploring ways to support the unfolding of each individual’s unique potential to be in service of the world.

She is currently back in Sweden, working remotely for the World Social Initiative Forum and as part of the Organising Team of YIP. 

Janne Bierens

Public Relations, Networking and Training Development

Is a Waldorf graduate and studied Humanistic Studies and Clinical and Developmental Psychology in the Netherlands. During her time in university she explored many facets of being human. From the multiple ways people give meaning to life and how we build a humane society to the scientific exploration of our mind, emotions and behaviour.

Being formed by the academic approach of these essential components of being human, Janne felt the need to reconnect with the human being in its wholeness, multidimensionality and complexity. She came to YIP and immersed herself in many questions, relationships, feelings and a passion for life.

After YIP she studied the Foundation Course at the Goetheanum in Switzerland to explore a personal relation to Anthroposophy and its view on the human being and beyond. She continues this exploration through working for the World Social Initiative Forum (WSIF) at the Goetheanum.

Janne is a big believer in the wisdom and potential of young people in todays world and society and feels committed to the strength of personal development in service of the greater whole. She is joyfully taking place in the Organising Team as a full time member to co-create a space in which people can ignite and strengthen their own and each others fullest potential in life.

Nicole Asis

Sustainability, Training Development and Research

Born in Manila, Nicole Asis graduated with a degree in Bachelor of Music in Music Education, Guitar Emphasis at the UST Conservatory of Music.  She worked as a music teacher in the Philippines for 10 years before moving to Switzerland for further education. She was a student in the Anthroposophical Studies at the Goetheanum from 2017 to 2019. Currently, she is finishing her training at a t k a – Studiengang Orpheus Musiktherapie in Lucerne.

Ricardo Pereira

Researcher and Training Development

Ricardo is a current researcher at Ruskin Mill Trust undertaking a PhD (Coventry University, UK) on the topic of Community Supported Agriculture and the decommodification of agriculture, based on the 3-fold social impulse. He has a University degree in Social Pedagogy/Sciences of Education (Porto University, Portugal), and a MSc in Practical Skills Therapeutic Education (University of the West of England, UK) with professional integration. He has over 15 years’ experience co-creating/facilitating programs for people of all ages with complex needs and from underprivileged backgrounds (Portugal, Spain, Brazil, USA, Hungary and UK). He also has a Diploma in Acting & Directing (Porto University) and Dramatherapy (Roehampton University, UK) and has acted in and directed dozens of plays in multiple countries. 


Work Location: 

Juan Facundo Bottero

Online Program Development

Born in Buenos Aires, Juan Bottero attended the Rudolf Steiner School from kindergarten to high school in Argentina. He volunteered as a facilitator when he was in 12th grade – teaching Theater to children living in vulnerable areas. He also attended “Connectivity: From Thinking to Action”, where he visited Associação Comunitária Monte Azul in Brazil and met Ute Craemer. He graduated from the University of Buenos Aires in 2015 with a degree in Sociology with emphasis on Latin American History, Human Rights, and Social Movements. After graduation, he worked as a coordinator in community banks for the NGO Nuestras Huellas, which is inspired by the experience of Muhammad Yunus’ Grameen Bank in India. He currently works at the Section for Social Sciences at the Goetheanum.

Where we are

Rüttiweg 45, CH 4143-Dornach

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T: +41 61 706 43 24


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