When we first began dreaming about having our own farm, the idea of a village was far from our minds. “We can help people in our own way.” We thought. As the years progressed, though, and we began to experience some seriously life-altering set-backs, we realized that our thinking was far too small to make any lasting, drastic impact on anyone’s lives, including our own.
When we say we want to build a sustainable eco-village, our idea of sustainability includes more than farming or living methods. Our ideal of sustainable living includes providing those things that all communities need in order to not only survive but to thrive and grow and be available for future generations.
All communities, whether urban or rural, need access to water, food, and resources. These resources are where the largest of our efforts in planning have been concentrated.
The portion of our society that we intend to serve first and foremost, is a portion that, unfortunately, is hard to service through conventional means. People with criminal backgrounds, drug histories and health issues who find it difficult at best to obtain gainful employment, housing or housing assistance and vital services such as healthcare, education, and vocational training. In many cases, these factions of society are relegated to menial labor positions at a barely-livable or below poverty wage. Eventually, they are either forced into housing communities.
A community that is either solely or largely reliant on outside resources for its basic needs – food, water, energy – the system, over time, begins to crumble. In the case of a disaster a non-self reliant community can be, and in certain cases has been, completely obliterated, forcing its inhabitants to either re-build with a better model or move on.
By creating a community that provides services to our surrounding communities, rather than relying on services and outside resources, we are planning for a future that can and will avoid these issues.
Aside from having the farm to generate our food, and using sustainable reclamation practices for daily living, waste production and the byproducts of human existence, we plan to have several other programs in place to provide an income for the community as well as for our individual residents. In our next few posts, we’ll be discussing some of these plans and what they will mean for us and our neighboring communities. We want to become a model for others to start such eco-villages and make our world a better place.