What exactly do you have in mind?
In general, we think it is important that everyone is aware of their ideas and expectations from the outset. Because before we decide to embark on such a project together, we should be sure that we have the same basic ideas.
For this reason, we have spent some time thinking about our wishes and ideas and realised that we have some concrete expectations. However, we also have at least as many open questions which, in our opinion, can only be answered in the Community process.
When to start?
We are now ready to take this step and need people who are also ready! Ideally we have a piece of land within the next 2-3 years and can get started.
We have a rough idea of where we would like to live: From central to southwest Germany or near the border in Belgium. We need at least a few hectares of land, and the area should of course be beautiful (and green) :)
Also, a city with at least 30,000 inhabitants in the vicinity (about 30km) would be good, e.g. to sell on the market.
Community is important to us, and we want the project to be established and sustained collectively. Once the core group is in place, decisions should be made collectively and we would like a part of life to take place together.
At the same time a balance between community and private life is important to us. In the long run we would love to live in our own hobbit house.
In the long term we imagine a manageable core of 4-8 "parties" (aka families / partnerships / individuals) who are an integral part of the community. This is of course a crude house number, but we don't intend to create a huge ecovillage – although a larger community with several smaller "neighbourhoods" might be an option.
Connectedness to nature
We want to live in touch with nature, which also means as consistently ecological as possible. We would like to design the land according to permaculture principles and be energy independent and largely self-sufficient in the long term.
For us, this also means relying on simple, natural and cheap means rather than using high-tech solutions. In other words, building as much as possible ourselves, upcycling and using local solutions.
It is important to us to actively work towards societal change and not to withdraw from society. We want to be open to everyone and offer a space for social encounters as well as a platform for creativity, workshops, political activism, self-development, philosophising, and experimentation.
We have ambitious plans and many projects in mind, but we nevertheless find it important not to forget about the importance of lightness. That means in practice that we also want to celebrate festivals, realise projects with joy and pleasure and celebrate life!
The biggest open question is who will ultimately be living in community with us. Of course this depends, among other things, on whether you contact us now and whether you can imagine living with us. Here we should rely on our gut feeling and trust that we will quickly notice whether it fits or not.
We have some savings and financing possibilities, but they are limited, and of course the project should be jointly financed. How the financing of the land and other expenditures will be dealt with in a fair way and how to deal with possible different financial circumstances of different members must be decided collectively. We might also be able to claim funding for some things.
What legal form do we take as a community? Who owns the land? Does everyone buy their own share or is everything owned by the community? How is the income from the projects handled? Does it partially go into a community fund? Is there a "basic income" for all members? Or is everyone economically independent?
We have plenty of project ideas that we would like to get involved with. These include the regeneration and design of the land, a market garden for commercial vegetable cultivation, a workshop space, permaculture workshops, yoga classes, workshop facilities, planting a forest garden, animal husbandry and many more. Which projects are finally implemented and who does what depends of course on everyone involved.
We find it important that all members actively participate in community life and in each "party" at least one person is mainly involved in a project on the land (while the other person may have an outside job). What exactly the community activities are has to be thought about and developed together. Of course "meetings" and decision-making mechanisms play a role in this, but also things like common meals, community projects (e.g. building houses, regeneration and design of the land), etc.
Of course there is no name for the project yet, which will surely reveal itself to the community at the right time.
Who exactly are you looking for now?
We see ourselves as initiators and are looking for project partners who would like to realise a joint project with us. If this is something you can imagine, if you have ideas of your own that will enrich the project, if you are ready to start in the foreseeable future and if your ideas match our ideas, we are looking for you!
If you find all this exciting, but don't want to take part, you can still help us! In the future we also need people who support us locally to realise projects; who come to visit us, participate in workshops or support one or the other crowdfunding campaign. You can sign up for our newsletter to stay posted.
We also want to reach as many people as possible and need you to spread the word: If you share our site in your social media channels and with anyone who might be interested, you are doing us a huge favour!