Gaia ChangeMakers Program (Summer)

01-Cover-Page-Gaia ChangeMakers Program (Summer)

Welcome to Gaia ChangeMakers Program (Summer)

The Gaia ChangeMakers Program is a new program of Make The Change, that combines fun, challenge and transformation. The camp starts in Zurich, then Prague, and finishes in the beautiful Swiss Alps.

Why we love it

Good to know


Please note that registration for 2024 is almost full and we expect spaces to fill up very soon. Early Bird pricing until 31st March. You can already reserve a space for 2025 and benefit from a supersaver discount of CHF 1,500.

The Gaia ChangeMakers Program is a new program of Make The Change, that combines fun, challenge and transformation. A camp to inspire 16 to 19 year-olds over three weeks to discover themselves, their values, inner strength and potential. The camp starts in Zurich, then Prague, and finishes in the beautiful Swiss Alps. Students explore global challenges like meeting energy demands, circular economies and sustainability, and a solutions based approach to build the skills and values needed to address them.


  • Immersive art and engineering projects (e.g. painting a mural in a Swiss Village and building a remote controlled hydrogen fuelled car)
  • Hands-on workshops (e.g. Inner Transition work to take action, Climate Fresk to understand the causes and effects of climate change, conflict management skills...)
  • Company visits, and expert talks around circular economy, supply chain and more (e.g. Patagonia, Panasonic, Planted Foods and more)
  • Excursions and activities in a variety of urban and natural settings. (e.g. staying on a glacier, hikes, swimming in the lakes, visiting a Swiss Chocolate factory, sightseeing and more!)


  • Develop skills that set you up for life, and universities and employers highly value in their best recruits, such as systems thinking (complexity awareness), problem solving like an innovator (using design thinking) and conflict management (leadership and communication).
  • Using the "Inner Development Goals" skills are coupled with values like empathy building, developing a sense of being, inclusion, respect and resilience.
  • Students are challenged to consider possible careers, even ones that may not yet exist.
  • International Baccalaureate Diploma students may also use the program to meet a number of the "CAS" (Creativity, Activity, Service) requirements.
  • Learning and friends to last a lifetime.

The program is founded and led by Diya Kanoria. She has led many overseas trips with students, during her extensive experience as a high school educator in the UK, USA and Switzerland. Through teaching and as a former Curriculum Area Leader at Zurich International School, Diya has a deep appreciation for the transformative power of education. She hold two Masters degrees from the University of Cambridge, and Duke University.

The program is also the product of a number of collaborations and partnerships, for example with Felix Keller, Professor at the University ETH Zurich, UNESCO Bioreserve Engadine, Netpathie, the Transition Lab at EPER, APAG Elektronik, Freitag Lab, Planted Foods, Patagonia and more.

Students can particpate as semi or fully residential students.
Semi-residential students do not have accomodation in Zurich, and will be with their families on the weekends.

We know three weeks may seem long during summer vacations, but we believe meaningful transformation takes time, and are confident you will be wanting it to be longer once you take part!
All participants receive a Gaia ChangeMaker Certificate, and may join our "Gaia Fellowship Program", with lifelong access to the Community Platform, a safe and secure way for Fellows to collaborate on projects and to explore curated content and exchange ideas.


In Zurich and Prague, accommodation will be in modern youth hostels of the highest standards. Rooms will be shared with other program participants. In the mountains, we will be in a remote and traditional Swiss Mountain Hut that we will hike to. Mountain huts allow us to enjoy staying in remote areas, where one would otherwise have to camp. In the Mountain huts, all students will have shared accomodation and shared bathrooms. The Mountain huts of Switzerland are unique and world-renowned for allowing accessability into some of the remotest locations of the Alps.

Shared Bedrooms

Max - campers per room

Separate Bathrooms

Non-ensuite bathrooms

Ensuite Bathrooms

Room with ensuite bathroom


Dining Room
Games Room
Swimming Pool
Tennis Court
Volleyball Court


* Company Visits in Switzerland and Czech Republic (circular economy, innovation, energy)
* Workshops (Inner development goals, conflict management, transitions lab, design thinking)
* Game-based learning (Climate Fresk, The Equity Game, Simulating bringing a village out of poverty).
* Speakers (pioneers, entreprenurs, artists)
* Glacier hike, overnight stay and glacier clean up.
* Painting a mural in a Swiss Village

* Staying in a Swiss Mountain Hut
* Hiking
* Picnics
* Swimming at the lakes
* Musical Concert on the glacier (as a particpant, or audience!)
* Swiss National Day Celebration
* Chocolate Factory and Museum tours
* Sightseeing in Prague and Zurich

Academic Courses

Our whole program is a transdiciplinary experiential academic program.


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  1. Student at University of Virginia (UVA), Event with UVA "Investing in a Sustainable Future" Program
    Quality of Teaching

    Safety and Supervision

    Campus and Facilities

    Extracurricular Activities


    Her (Diya’s) dedication to sustainability is inspiring and is something I want to emulate in my future. Most importantly, she showed me how sustainability is not limited to one sector. This sentiment made me very hopeful because before this course, I thought that sustainable career paths were limited to environmental science or urban planning.

  2. Alexander Degenhardt
    Quality of Teaching

    Safety and Supervision

    Campus and Facilities

    Extracurricular Activities


    Ms. Kanoria had a profound impact on my personal development as a teacher, mentor and confidant. I fondly remember our trips together like building homes in Romania, or sailing through trees at the ropes park. She supported me through atypical and unstable teenage years, and she motivated me with her trust to do better in and outside of school.”
    Alexander Degenhardt
    Founder of Cikumas GmbH
    Student at University of St. Gallen

  3. Lucy Sparks
    Quality of Teaching

    Safety and Supervision

    Campus and Facilities

    Extracurricular Activities


    Not only is Diya thoughtful, and truly caring of her students, she is deeply passionate about her craft, and in providing learners with the most effective and impactful education possible. In this way, she is, quite frankly, paving the way for our future learners, teachers, and scientists alike. Through her kindness, determination for change, and passion for teaching, she has been a truly influential part of my formative education. It has been a privilege to have been taught by a person like her, and to have had the chance to call her a mentor, teacher, and role model.
    Lucy Sparks,
    Student at Maastricht University

  4. David Markus
    Quality of Teaching

    Safety and Supervision

    Campus and Facilities

    Extracurricular Activities


    What impresses me most is Diya’s vision and ability to mobilize others to make things happen. Her energy and determination make her an impact player.
    David Markus, Principal of Zurich International School

Comments are closed.

How to get to there

Address: Zurich, Switzerland
Closest Airport: Zurich
Airport Pickup: Option available

Things to know

Cancellation Policy

To help with your planning as best as we can, until 1st April, you can cancel within 2 weeks of paying for your space and get a full refund. With any cancellation after 2 weeks of paying, or from 1st April 2024 until 1st May 2024, you can get a 50% refund. All cancellations from May 1st 2024 onward will be fully charged.

Covid Measures


Health & Safety

Health and safety is highest priority for our students. Our dedicated facilitators are first-aid trained and will ensure that all students are well taken care off. We assess each of our activities and excursions to ensure a safe and fun experience.

Staff & Student Ratio

1 : 10

Contact Gaia ChangeMakers Program (Summer)

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    Contact Gaia ChangeMakers Program (Summer)