The Village at Gaia Center

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The Village at Gaia Center

  1. 1.  An intentional community is a planned residential community designed to have a much higher degree of teamwork than other communities. The members of an intentional community typically hold a common vision. They typically have shared resources and responsibilities. Intentional communities include; cohousing communities, eco-villages, communes, co-ops, etc.
  2. 2.  To have a working farm that produces food for the community members (and possibly a CSA/ market farm). To have cooperative businesses that support our endeavors. To build and live in a way that is in harmony with the Earth. To live out these goals in a way that is conscious of our intent and celebrates the challenges and rewards of collective living.
  3. 3.  78 acres of land, 16 acres of pasture. 62 acres of wooded rolling hills. The land has a creek and a few groundwater springs. We are located on a gravel road 3 miles off the interstate. The land is located outside of Colfax, Iowa. 23 miles east of the Capitol. It has an existing open-sided barn with electric, and three fenced paddocks. There are many black raspberries, mulberries and wild plums growing wild across the property.
  4. 4. The Land
  5. 5. •The Main house is a 2,300 sq ft. building designedfor community dining, workshop and office space.•There is living space on the second floor.•A wrap-around porch will accommodate outsideseating when completed.
  6. 6.  Whole tree construction using ‘round wood’ taken from the property. 100 yr. old barn beams and other recycled materials designed into a pole framed structure. Designed and built as a strawbale building. The plaster failed and the walls were re-constructed using ‘stick framing’ and recycled cellulose insulation. Plans include incorporating-water catchment, solar hot water heat and PV Panels.
  7. 7. We Live & Learn Compost Happens . . .And We Try Again – Possible is Better than Perfect!
  8. 8.  Membership Decision making and Group Process The Farm Cooperative Businesses Housing Structure Culture Spirit
  9. 9. 1. Most people are full time Residential Members.2. Others are transitioning to the farm, and are full time Associate Members.3. At the beginning, everyone is a Provisional Member to get to know each other.4. People that do not want the country life, but want to be involved, can become a Support Member (i.e., someone involved in a cooperative business).
  10. 10. Ideas we like~1. We believe that everyone deserves to have a voice in the process of community.2. We would like to have regular meetings run with a modified consensus model (consensus minus 1).3. We would like to have twice monthly business meetings.4. We would like to have monthly visioning meetings.
  11. 11. Permaculture Land use: Food forest and perennial food crops Humane animal husbandry (chickens, goats, etc.) Organic vegetable gardens (ornamental flowers?) Ponds and aquaculture Greenhouses and four season food productionWe would like to grow most of the communities food on the land.We would like to employ canning, preserving and drying to eat wholesome foods year round.
  12. 12.  We envision diverse enterprises on the land. Businesses could be owned by a few members or Community owned. Some ideas we have~ -Artist cooperative -Events and retreats -CSA/ market garden -Educational workshops -Healer’s co-op -Drum making -Green Building Business -Spirituality classes
  13. 13. Even Working Together Can Be Fun
  14. 14. We envision different options ranging from –1. Green built cabins scattered around the property with a shared dining facility2. A large central dormitory style building.3. Yurts and other 3 season housing that people can live in while building more permanent structures4. Lots of ‘common spaces’ throughout the community (i.e., libraries, music space, entertainment areas, workshops, meeting spaces, etc.)One of the important things for us is that the community is designed forpeople to ‘run into’ one another during the course of our daily lives(while ensuring private space for individuals also).
  15. 15. the Heart is
  16. 16.  Housing types-  Styles- • Single family houses • Strawbale, • Dorm/ Group housing • Cordwood, • Short Term/ 3 season • Yurts housing • Cob Costs • Underground/Berm Sharing the labor of • Living Roofs building • Earthbag Foundations Ownership • Leasing/ renting/ contract • Zoning & Permits
  17. 17.  How will we be organized? Areas to talk about are:•Legal Structure •Buildings/ Residences •501 (c3) (d) non-profit •Who will build them? •Limited Liability Corporation LLC •Where will the capital come from? •Community Land Trust •How would spaces/ land be •Cooperative allocated? •What happens if folks want to move•How will Enterprises be run? on? •Community Owned •Income and Community Resources •Small groups (like an Arts Coop) •What will be the expectations for •Individually member contributions (both physically •How would space be used for each of and monetarily) to the community? these? •Will there be work and enterprises that community members can support themselves with in the community?
  18. 18.  An agreed on code of ethics: Non-violent, egalitarian, accepting of all sexual orientations, gender identities, races and ethnicities. Goals: - To be joyous in our shared endeavors. - To strive to be: Collaborative, respectful, open minded, helpful, communicative, progressive, and feminist. - To pursue an environmental ethic, loving kindness, willingness to work through conflicts, sharing of knowledge & skills, inclusive socializing, tolerance of differences, practicing generosity, forgiveness & abundance consciousness. - Most importantly to have the simple willingness to keep trying.
  19. 19. Spirit in Community ~ Connecting in our common respect for the Earth and the cycles and seasons of the land.~ Finding the Sacred in each other and ourselves.
  20. 20. What’s Next? Land Tour Discussions Potlucks Decisions Commitments Work Parties Drum Circles Coop Projects Planting Building Fun Creating Community!

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