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Hello,

The next meetings for the Northwest New Jersey Ecovillage project will
be Sunday, July 30th and Sunday, August 20th both from 10am to 4pm at our home in Andover, NJ. If you are interested in attending, and have not
before, please email us for directions and meeting agenda. All meetings
are potluck. Below are the Vision Statement, Mission Statement, a list
of general agreements, and the organizing group's membership agreements.
We are working on editting some more in-depth descriptions of our
general agreements right now. We are finding the main mission we hold
that separates us from other ecovillage projects is our goal of
re-localization through creating a regionally sustainable, democratic
and self-reliant local economy. We are also finding we hold standards
for sustainable living that are on the higher spectrum of the scale for
ecovillages. We have a strong focus on supporting families. We will
have a democratic school, a homeschooling resource center, midwifery
services, a university (Gaia University), and home funeral aid. The
land will be cooperatively owned by the community, so kids will have
plenty of space to run around in the natural setting. We hope to hear
from some of you.

Our organizing group is really moving along. We have some solid
agreements. We are exploring many very exciting ideas. We are working
on becoming a LLC in the near future. We will have a website up soon.
We are charting out our goals and future plans. It's a great group,
full of people with great vision and a strong sense of urgency. The
group is growing in size and we are meeting some wonderful new people.
Our group comes from New Jersey and NYC, with some possible new members
from the poconos.

Peace,

Abe and Mary Karl-Gruswitz
[email protected]
973-786-5396
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/EcovillageNWNJ/

-------------------------------------

Vision Statement

We are a family of friends creating an evolving ecovillage dedicated to

caring for the Earth and its inhabitants by learning, practicing, and

demonstrating the skills for ecological sustainability and a nurturing

society.

Mission Statement

Our community is nurturing a close relationship with the Earth through

permaculture, sustainable agriculture, natural building, alternative

energy, and continual waste reduction.

We create a family-oriented community by valuing close, respectful

relationships, consensus decision-making, resource sharing, shared

meals, community composting, cluster housing, community buildings, a

learning center, and a cooperative college.

We value democracy and worker ownership and are creating a

self-supportive, local economy, which allows us to live and work

cooperatively.

List of General Agreements (5/28/06)

- House Clustering

- Natural Building and retrofitting of existing structures

- We respect children, families, and parents

- Community approval process for granting plots

- Energy needs must follow a set of core principles

- We will have some community-shared buildings

- There will be no dietary restrictions (except no humans)

- Respecting of all spiritual and secular beliefs

- Rentals from community, not individuals (Some discussion needs to be

re-visited in regards to community members renting their properties when

on hiatus from the community. There was agreement that there will be a

time limit, if so.)

- CSA on property

- Prefer to be 5 miles from a town

- Sustainable agriculture

- Cooperative ownership of land, private ownership of housing with

oversight from the community on sustainability practices through an

entity that is like a homeowner's association

- Shared Meals

- Community Composting

- A Learning Center and Cooperative College in the Ecovillage

- We will develop a L.E.T.S. with the local community

- Permaculture

- Resource Sharing

- Ecological Water Use (grey water recycling, and no septic systems, or

sewer systems)

- Continual Waste Reduction

- Pedestrian walkway with a parking lot on the outskirts of the

community

- Optional car cooperative of biodiesel and grease vehicles

- Any businesses on the land must be worker coops, non-profits run

democratically by all staff, democratic CSA's, or self-employed

individuals.

- Composting toilets

- Members will contribute the minimum number of community labor hours

- Optional Income Sharing

- We will grow into a network or ecovillages in our region

Agreements for Members of the Organizing Group

1. Each of us will pay $5 a month into a start-up fund for the
community. Payments can not be more than four months late.
2. Each of us is committed to becoming knowledgeable and trained in
consensus decision making
3. Each of us will read the following books:
"Creating a Life Together" by Diana Leafe Christian
"The CoHousing Handbook" by Chris & Kelly ScottHanson
"On Conflict and Consensus" by CT Butler. It is available for free
at http://www.consensus.net
"Introduction to Permaculture" by Bill Mollison
4. Each of us will attend as many meetings as possible in order to keep
continuity of the group and keep momentum moving forward.
5. Expenses of the organizing group incurred for the project can be paid
back with approval from the group, at latest by the purchase of the
property.
 
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