In this newsletter, we’ll be exploring big ideas from re:build, an online festival centered on creating regenerative villages. The event took place from April 30-May 2 over many many Zoom calls. The contributors covered a variety of exciting topics: new education approaches, multi-generational living, renewable energy, permaculture, earth buildings, tiny homes, indigenous knowledge, the future of cities, regenerative real estate, funding & so much more. The breadth of this event makes us hopeful we are entering a regenerative renaissance— a regenaissance.
WHY RE:BUILD? WHY NOW?
“The pandemic has accelerated the adoption of remote working, freeing millions to choose where they live without constraint. It has also awakened in so many of us the desire to live differently; closer to nature and in community.
re:build is here to support this new-village movement by enabling knowledge sharing and multi-disciplinary collaboration between all the people and organizations who are re:building our world.
Where is the regenerative village building movement at today?
How to best respond to the opportunity presented by a mass-shift to remote work?
What part can regenerative villages play in building a better future?
How to build a village?
What makes a village regenerative?”
We need environments where humans can flourish in their personal development, discovery and evolution into becoming their best selves: spaces that deeply connect us to ourselves, each other and the planet to know that we are all one family; spaces that create a peaceful, loving and regenerative culture that actively make the world a better place. The regenerative/eco/smart village movement emphasizes key social and material elements to create a thriving environment where people and planet prosper.
We’re seeing an exodus from cities. But where will those exciting the cities go? The emergence of intentional communities, eco-villages, permaculture living and smart-villages are being seen as the prototypes of the new, modern village. James Ehlich, founder of Regen Villages, shared their model for scaling these approaches: decentralized villages designed for 300+ inhabitants with the principles of biomimetics (mimicking nature) as central, providing bio-regional food security, clean water, renewable energy, updated education, economic resilience, transportation and waste-to-resource management.
He says that the missing/tipping point of these projects are funding and an adequate supply chain of resources. Current construction practices are very wasteful, environmentally extractive and toxic to our health. He touched on hempcrete 3D printing as better emerging building option.
Their call-out for collaboration:
“We are looking for the following: local government and landowners, willing to provide land (>60 acres – can be mixed private and government) in the form of equity (land loan), priced for 2/3 open space, with patient partner returns. Local, regional and federal government committed to create fast-track conditions as a pipeline to support prefab industrial construction with circular materials, for long-term positive impact, for residential developments. Potential to build prefab, 3D printing and/or mass timber manufacturing for the village construction and regional developments. Collaborate with global partners and scale village with revenue sources as a new beating heart for the economy.”
“No new land is a blank slate – there is always history.” -James Ehrlich
Latitude – Regenerative Real Estate
Can we bring regenerative values to the way land and homes are bought and sold? Oregon-based Latitude thinks so.
“Latitude is a real estate team that helps people live in more thoughtful and resilient ways. We believe in regeneration as a powerful force for good – from healthy and efficient homes to personal and community resiliency. We empower people by using real estate as the catalyst for change.”
Children keep us young, playful and curious. Galileo is an online learning platform (soon to be in person) for kids aged 8-18 years with a self-directed learning model.
“The core philosophy in our approach on how we see education is to help our students become independent, self-directed and self-organized learners. We designed all our programs to help our students achieve independence in their thinking and to inspire them to explore the skills we consider fundamentals for the future like entrepreneurship, technology or what it means to be a global citizen.”
They are currently looking for physical spaces to set up in person and group learning within a global network.Please contact them if you are interested in collaborating or joining.
Education isn’t a one size fits all approach. Everyone has different ways of learning, gifts, interests, skills and purpose/mission to pursue. The future of education requires a shift from industrial models to personalized, adaptive approaches in order for the individual soul to thrive within the collective. Learning and evolution is never ending—always stay curious!
Jamaica Stevens, Keala Young & Jeff Clearwater from VillageLab discussed restoring and re-imagining the commons (land shared by all), including the sharing of power and wealth. Their whole systems design model shown below covers key aspects of how to harmoniously co-create community living spaces: a social atmosphere where collaboration, non-violent communication, conflict resolution, holistic health, self discovery, spiritual growth, shadow/light work and sovereignty are woven into ways of living.
Interested in being a part of building a new and better world? This exciting new platform for regenerative jobs links people with similar values and vision of how they want to participate in the world.
“We are a recruitment and training platform for the regenerative economy.
We connect top talent with pioneering regenerative organizations and businesses. We also provide training, coaching and career advice for people who are looking to build a career that is in service of people and planet.”
The rise in digital nomads and remote working has drastically increased due to global restrictions over the past year. Economadia discussed how these people can be of benefit to regenerative villages and vice versa. Location independent people can help the village with whichever digital skills they have to offer, while the village provides an ideal living space for co-working in a values-aligned environment.
“Combining the best of location independence, technology and nature. We firmly believe that in the near future we will see more “global villages” with international communities being their inhabitants.”
Upcoming Courses and Events from Rē:
A Child Shall Lead Us: Preventing Domestic Violent Extremism Through Youth and Congregations
*May 20th, 10:30am-4:30pm Eastern US Time*
*No Cost. Registration required.*
Rē is partnering with the Institute for Youth Ministry at Princeton Theological Seminary to engage young people and faith communities across the USA in research and creating solutions to deep social divisions that can lead to violent extremism.
Violent extremists often target young people to recruit, exploiting their social and economic vulnerability and eagerness to find purpose in their lives. While youth are often portrayed as perpetrators of violent extremism, more recent strategies view youth as key stakeholders in interrupting the cycle of violent radicalization and preventing violent extremism (PVE).
The USA’s 350,000 religious congregations have the potential to be key allies in this work. Not only are they deeply invested in protecting their young, they offer long traditions of peacebuilding, and resources for strengthening our social fabric.
This conversation on May 20th is a first step. Its specific goal is to help us learn from the international community’s long experience with young people as peacebuilders who are helping to prevent global violent extremism.
We are hosting five panels throughout the day that feature global changemakers, including young people themselves, committed to peace, justice, and youth-led change by launching grassroots movements, policy changes, and international collaborations.
Rē co-founder Felix Bivens is working closely with colleagues at Princeton to organize the event and will be part of a panel focusing on participatory action research and youth-led peacebuilding.
Register to livestream all of the panel discussions, and/or access to recordings after the event.
Nature and Belonging: Finding Connection Through Nature and the Senses
*June 6 to July 4, weekly sessions for five weeks*
*Course fee: $15*
The pandemic is difficult on so many levels. Fear that you or those you love could become seriously ill. Anxiety about the ability to work and finances. And, maybe most of all, the exhausting stretches of quarantine in one location, perhaps alone.
Lockdown may have kept you in a location you don’t want to be in– in a small urban apartment, stuck in another country, or quarantining outside of your own home to protect vulnerable family members.
Whatever the circumstances, you’ve likely grown tired of looking at the walls of your lockdown space, maybe even tired of what was once your favorite walk after so much repetition. You feel disconnected, like you no longer belong to that place that you know so well.
In our new online course, Rē wants to help you deal with this moment that we are all facing. Our ‘Nature and Belonging’ course takes on this challenge by exploring concepts from eco-psychology and phenomenological techniques that engage your five senses. The five week program will help course participants find connection and build re-connection with the place where they are.
Join course facilitator Maya Galimidi, founder of Empower With Nature, for this important and timely course!
From Duality to Wholeness: 21 Day Reconnect Through Nature and Creative Practices
Duality or separation is the greatest illusion of all. By coming home to nature and tapping into our divine feminine through creativity, we can then harmonize our life- mind, body, heart and soul- to find a space of wholeness. A remembering that we are all one- unified by Mother Nature. Exploring different concepts of duality, including divine masculine and feminine, the 4 major elements of nature: earth, air, fire, and water, as well as other topics, such as light and dark/shadows.
Videos or lives of info, meditation, yoga and other creative practices will be posted on the days noted, with live recordings available after. Explore nature and creativity on your own time- when it works best for you! Making it accessible and manageable to all folks and their busy lives!
Join Caitlin Smith of Within Wellness and Ashlei Laing of the Regenerative School for this exciting new course.
All sessions are available online for download.
Start anytime. Go at your own pace!
I’ve had my mind on community living for a few years now. This gathering brought together many pieces of this living puzzle that is being globally developed at the local, concrete level.
There is still so much to build!
I personally love finding these new schools— like the Regenerative School!— popping up because when I finished my ‘formal’ education and started traveling the world, I soon discovered that there were so much more exciting things to learn and that our current education systems lack the adequate fundamentals of what knowledge and skills we need in today’s world. Our world is rapidly changing and we need new education systems that are up to date for students to be equipped for the future they will be creating.
This re:build event was exciting and inspiring, to connect with the people and projects that are co-creating a better future.
—Ruth Sevigny, Editor