It’s here!! Journey to Hopeful Futures: a Handbook

About It’s here!! Journey to Hopeful Futures: a Handbook

Published on 1st June 2023, you can now order copies from:

Silverwood Books Paperback

Amazon Paperback or E-book

Kindle E-book

Click here to find all the weblinks contained in the book organised by Chapter and Page

About Journey to Hopeful Futures

Journey to Hopeful Futures proposes that each of us individually needs to go on a journey of discovery and learning within self, community, planet and cosmos to understand what is happening to the planet and to own the undoubted pain in our hearts with love – the same love that we hold for our families and those dear to us.  From such understanding and love we can start to take action both individually and with others.  We  can help to change the predominant exploitative paradigm which is damaging the earth and much of society to one which respects the natural systems on which life depends, starts to restore the earth and totally changes our society so that it becomes, in Thomas Berry’s words, a ‘mutually enhancing society within planet earth’ (1999).  This is the ‘hopeful future’towards which this travelogue is aimed. I encourage readers to go on their own ‘hopeful journey’

In exploring an emerging participatory view of the world, the book argues that every single person is needed to create hopeful futures and that all our different skills are valuable for the tasks ahead. The book uses story from family and daily life to suggest faithfulness over years, outlining that taking action year by year is needed and necessary to create futures which are hopeful and not full of doom and despair and as such good for our mental health and well being.

My hope is that the book will inspire the reader to experiment and create their own journey of transformation into the wider planet and cosmos as well as still continuing to foster their own individual well-being and that of the business, organisation or community they participate within, finding within first, second and third person action research methods for the journey.

Publication Date 1 June 2023

ISBN                    9781916300811

Dimensions         229 x 152mm

Extent                486 pages

RRP                     £19.99

Thema                RN Rights Worldwid

Sustainability Statement

It is acknowledged that book publishing has an impact on the environment, as does most human activity. Every book published will have a carbon footprint. Publishers and printers are very aware of that, and do as much as possible to ensure the smallest carbon footprint. All responsible operators within the industry continually look at ways to source materials responsibly, produce less waste and limit the impact that publishing and printing books has on the environment. The BWPA has an interesting article here:

The Print on Demand (POD) model is the best way that publishers and authors can reduce the environmental impact of the books they produce. POD means books are printed only when needed, to meet demand, so the model is in itself more eco-friendly. Most POD books are printed as required, in a location near to the end-customer, using a worldwide network of printers. This reduces the impact of shipping container-loads of books, drives down energy consumption, reduces wasted paper and ink, and eliminates the need to destroy/pulp unsold books. Because of the nature of the ‘on demand’ system, there is also no need to warehouse an inventory, removing the energy consumption associated with storage facilities (usually climate-controlled to ensure the books remain in good condition until sold). 

Responsible printers, including POD printers, source paper from a certified supply chain, ultimately from sustainably managed forests.

SilverWood uses Ingram and Amazon KDP for POD printing, and their environmental information is below.

Ingram Group:

Amazon KDP Printing makes the following statement:

“Environmental consciousness is important to us. As a manufacture-on-demand company, we produce units as they’re ordered, which reduces excess production. We also maintain a commitment to recycling waste materials resulting from the printing process and from daily office operations, and we will continue to review our practices to ensure we are doing our part to protect the environment.”

Furthermore, Amazon as a company has pledged to reach net-zero across their operations by 2040, and publishes this page about their commitments:

Further information

Links included in the text of the book


The author presenting the ideas from her recently published book at Manchester Metropolitan University’s Sustainability Day, June 2023


Reviews of Journey to Hopeful Futures: A Handbook

Ian Mowll,  Greenspirit Co-ordinator, August 2023:

t is so easy to be discouraged by the weight of issues in the world with the environmental crisis and social justice issues. One can easily become overwhelmed and then avoidant. We need encouragement and pathways to help us to take steps on our journey to make the world sustainable, loving and a better place to be. And this is the aim of this book. It provides tools, ideas and encouragement to show us that so much is possible if we can move forward together on this meaningful journey.

There are six cycles in the book: beginning our journey, opening the toolkit, learning to use the tools, delving deeper into new paradigms, love and a sacred universe and finally, germinating seeds of hope. Each cycle contains two or more chapters delving deep into the ideas and providing practical guidance.

The book is wide ranging in its approach covering the self, community, planet and cosmos. And it is very well researched; it is a treasure trove of ideas. There are many links and suggestions of books, videos, films, community organisations and more to help the reader on her or his journey.   More…



Journey to Hopeful Futures:  Endorsements received

 “I have known Dr Kettleborough for 25 years and spent time sharing stories of the collective power of communities to transform their local environments.  She has now written this comprehensively researched handbook full of practical examples to help each of us as individuals to connect with the cosmos and be part of the changes we want to see on a global scale.  It’s an optimistic, readable book with hope embedded in every page – hope for the planet; hope for humanity; hope for each of us.”

Lindy Kelly, Executive Director, Groundwork London & Groundwork South

“Helena is drawing on decades of committed inquiry, research and experimentation to offer us this handbook. As her stories show, she spans and interweaves individual, community, organizational, planetary and cosmic attentions, seeking hopeful images and participatory action to address the challenges currently facing human societies and the more than human world. I especially admire Helena’s capacities to bear witness, to behold current challenges – as she does for example by faithfully cataloguing Gaia’s Graveyards – and not look away. This handbook is a rich and stimulating sourcebook for people seeking to live into and help generate hopeful futures for us all.”

Judi Marshall, Professor Emerita in Learning and Leadership, Lancaster University Management School, UK

 “There is the small, highly focussed, reductionist window through which we can view reality, which matters as it can be very practical. But there is also the big picture. One that sets the whole shebang in the context of Thomas Berry’s “new universe story”. It conveys meaning, proportion and a sense of worthwhile direction in living. Such is what Helena Kettleborough explores in this book. In a manner that is scholarly yet helpful, pensive but applied, she provides a map to help her readers chart a course through stars.”

Professor Alastair McIntosh, author of Soil and Soul, Spiritual Activism and Poacher’s Pilgrimage.

 “Helena Kettleborough’s ‘Journey to Hopeful Futures’ is a veritable ‘labour of love’. She draws on more than 30 years of experience (both of practical action and deep reflection) to develop insightful ways of helping others undertake their own journeys of discovery. Hope in a time of increasingly traumatic disruption is an elusive quality, but Kettleborough offers us that emotional support, with impressive realism and total integrity. I much enjoyed this book.”

Jonathon Porritt, Co-Founder Forum for the Future, author and campaigner

“Local communities around the world are caught in the dangerous riptides of ecological crises producing social and economic ruptures that are unprecedented and not of their making. What to do in practical terms? Working together at the local level, with care, compassion, and co-creativity providing the guiderails, as Helena advocates, has to be an essential part of the solution. With a richness of resources and practical exercises to hold hands, hold each other, and hold together along personal and collective journeys of hopeful futures, this book facilitates learners and co-workers from right across our wonderfully rich and diverse communities to work together to fashion alternative futures and take collective action. It is a beautifully optimistic book, and just what we need right now”.

Sally Randles, Professor in Sustainability and Innovation, Manchester Metropolitan University.

” Kettleborough offers us a toolkit for life journeys in incredibly difficult times, helping us see ourselves as an integral part of the unfolding cosmic drama; anyone can walk the path, feel the magnificence, share in the joy. This book is an inquiry that can be transformative. It begins with the simple and the small and carries the capacity to take us all the way to celebrate the sacred in all that we can see, feel, touch and immerse ourselves in.”

Jagdish Rattanani, Journalist, Foundation of The Billion Press; teacher in communications and ethics, SPJIMR, Mumbai, India; Director, ASP, UK.

“I have huge admiration for the way Helena Kettleborough has pursued her quest for a different, participatory way of being in the world ethically, intellectually, practically, and spiritually over many years. She is right to claim that she continues to ‘walk her talk’. This is a truly attractive book, profound but clearly written, which will be a valuable resource to readers in many different walks of life.”

Peter Reason, ‘Writer, Emeritus Professor University of Bath

“The multiple crisis we face are rooted in separation from the Earth, the denial that the earth is living, and an anthropocentric arrogance that we are superior to other species who are our relatives. This world view creates hopelessness and despair.

Dr. Helena Mary Kettleborough ‘Journey of Hopeful Futures’ is a guide to once again find humanity’s place in a living earth, to rediscover our relations as members of the earth community ,reclaim the sacred ,and through participation in living processes, regenerate Gaia.”

Vandana Shiva, Ecologist, Philosopher, Physicist & Ecofeminist; Founder of the Research Foundation for Science Technology and Ecology and of Navdanya, the seed saving movement

“This book is a must read! Indeed, it is a tour de force of analysis and action. Kettleborough combines a broad understanding of our planetary challenges with comprehensive intellectual and cultural resources to meet them. Her suggestions for participatory actions will engage the reader with actionable solutions.”

Mary Evelyn Tucker, Yale University, Co-Author, Journey of the Universe

“This is a survivor’s manual, a guidebook for leaving the Anthropocene – the bitter dominion of greed over the sweetness of life. Speaking to the hand, and to the heart, ‘Journey to Hopeful Futures’ teaches us how to start inhabiting a new world, which is no longer separated in mute things and lone, bored and violent dominators. Helena Kettleborough bridges the chasm between contemporary western humans and the bleak image they paint of the cosmos. She shows – and in fact gives detailed instructions – how to re-animate the world we co-inhabit with the remainder of life, and thus ultimately how to re-animate ourselves. “Journey to Hopeful Futures” should be in the readings shortlist of every course in Environmental Humanities, Anthropology, and Ecology.”

 Andreas Weber, biologist, ecophilosopher and nature writer

“Journey to Hopeful Futures is a well-researched, thoughtful, and grounded handbook that invites readers to reflect on their personal and communal learning journeys as active participants in the making of tomorrow. Informative and inspirational, Kettleborough helps us explore ways to slow down in order to witness, inquire, imagine, and practically engage in possibilities of hope in uncertain times.”

Dr. Maria Liu Wong, Co-Chair, PASCAL Faith and Spirituality Learning Cities Network; Provost, City Seminary of New York


During the last four years Helena has delivered the ideas in the book to a wide variety of audiences: community, business, resident, academic, senior citizen, young people and children. At the end of each presentation, seminar or workshop – nearly fifty to date – the feedback is that the ideas resonate, are valuable and inspire participants to imagine how to create hopeful futures. Here are some responses:

Community Participant:  “Plant trees. Creative teaching. Inspire others. Appreciate every day.

Teacher:  “Plant more trees in new school. Help our students redefine happiness. We are all needed. It is vital we educators walk the talk.”

Business Participant:  “I sense a huge potential exists in our organisation for employees to feel part of something that serves a higher purpose…I think a new narrative should present sustainability as part of everything we do and feel more like an invitation to bring people in, rather than a programme to learn and comply with. I think this narrative is within people/staff.

PhD students:

“ More time for the lecture as I think it is important and useful for post graduate students. Very creative and new way at presenting the topic.”

“Really interesting way to pique interest in how to address this pressing issue. I loved that it was us coming up with the ideas. Brilliant! Thanks!”