Create a Small Intentional Community

 

As I posted recently on my blog post Selling the Farm, I will be moving to a new farm nearby called Furuvoll.  

I have long wanted to downsize to a tiny house and one idea I played with for a while was to set up one or two on the farm so that we could have enough living space for a cooperative operation. 

Where it makes sense to place the tiny house on our farm.

The vision was of continuing to work together with others on seed saving, community sufficiency, plant breeding, expanding the food forest garden, introducing poultry, expanding the market garden and nursery operation, mushroom growing, teaching, arranging courses etc. 

My mission in life I feel is to teach people about seed saving and becoming a part of a stable ecosystem through face-to-face hands in the soil training and action. I am slowing down the market garden side of my operation as I don’t have capacity to both sell plants and vegetables while doing the teaching and seed saving.

I thought therefore of teaming up with people who could manage the market garden/plant nursery side of the operation, while I focus on teaching and seed saving. There could be countless synergies and opportunities emerging.  

I have spent time researching intentional communities and visited many eco-villages in search of good models. What keeps coming up is the statistic that over 90% of intentional communities fail. Luckily, I heard a podcast by Diana Leafe Christian called Ecovillages and intentional Communities where she explains what you need to think about before starting an intentional community. 

In her book Creating a Life Together: Practical tools to Grow Ecovillages and Intentional Communities, Diana says that the top six reasons why intentional communities fail are:

  1. Mission and purpose: Everyone needs to be on the same page for what the community is for. Who we are, what we´re doing and why we´re doing it. 
  2. Choose a fair and participatory form of decision making. (make a lease agreement in terms of property taxes, insurance, upkeep and maintenance costs)
  3. Have clear agreements in writing. People remember things differently. 
  4. What do you need to know to start an eco-village. 
  5. Make communication and process skills a priority. 
  6. Chose fellow co-founders and community members with an eye towards first, 1. Do they support the common mission and purpose, 2. Do they have a demonstrated ability to get along well with people. 3. Are the relatively functional. 

My mission for some dream scenario seed saving community would be based on the following:

Teach people about seed saving and becoming a part of a stable ecosystem through face-to-face hands in the soil training and action. Be a part of the solution to the ecological crisis through direct action and through teaching in a hands-on way. We humans on the farm are some of several keystone species. We must use our consciousness in a mindful way so as to increase the syntropy and decrease the entropy to the ecosystem that we steward. (Find more about ecological ethics and principles in Web of Ecological Thought)

For more resources on Intentional Communities see https://www.ic.org/intentional-community-books/

Please email me if you are interested in creating an intentional community with me by introducing yourself, what you think you can contribute and what your strengths and shadows are. My email address is