Diversity and Inclusion in Intentional Communities

the Triennial Conference of the

International Communal Studies Association

2019 Conference Abstracts and Bios

 

Abstracts

 

 

Altus, Deborah, “Maintaining Age Diversity in Intentional Communities: Problems and Practices”

 

According to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, “the world’s older population continues to grow at an unprecedented rate.” Indeed, the percentage of the world’s population age 65 and older is expected to grow from its current level of approximately 8.5% (617 million) to 17% (1.6 billion) by 2050. It is no surprise, then, that the average age of many intentional communities is also increasing. As people age in place in their neighborhoods and communities, many places are becoming what is known as “naturally occurring retirement communities” or NORCs. Similarly, some intentional communities find themselves turning into NORCs as their members are aging in place. And just as an aging population creates concerns for neighborhoods, cities and countries around the world, an aging population often creates difficulties for intentional communities. Such difficulties may relate to work-sharing, finances, health care, housing, intergenerational communication and more. This paper will consider these issues, and, in addition, will explore the practices used by some intentional communities to try to maintain a wider diversity of ages.

 

Ambrose, Hunter, Jean East, Renata Heberton, and Ali Hussaini, “Inclusion across Race/Ethnicity, Class, and Legal Status: What Have We Learned at Angelica Village?”

 

Angelica Village is an intentional community. The mission statement is: “Angelica Village, through love, care, and sustained mutual support, nurtures conscious community living spaces where people with special abilities, youth and families seeking refuge from war and violence, individuals and families experiencing homelessness, and fellow community partners receive what they need and share what they can.”

Established in Fall 2015, Angelica Village is a community of those marginalized by poverty, racism and violence and those with more privilege and stability. It is a unique combination of what sounds like a non-profit social services program and an intentional community.

Those living at Angelica Village homes are a mix of youth and young adults who are refugees, immigrants, families who have experienced homelessness, persons who identify as LGBTQ, and individuals and families who have more privileges of race and class. Over the past three years, the intentional inclusion and mix of diversity has created both successes and challenges. The panel will speak to: how the intent of Angelica Village allows for diversity of the community; the unique challenges of a diverse group of young adults in community life; strategies for empowerment of the diverse groups, including restorative practices; and how policies are formed amid the challenges of balancing safety and legality with empowerment and self-determination.

The Angelica Village model is based on empowerment practice research. Empowerment practice involves principles of inclusion, shared power, and creating the conditions for people to increase power over decisions and choices that affect their lives. Empowerment practices are lived out at the personal, interpersonal and political levels, recognizing that power and privilege are important to acknowledge in community living.

 

Ariel, Havatzelet and Menachem Topel, “From Kibbutz’ Formal Duty to Members’ Personal Responsibility”

 

This presentation is part of the doctoral research of Havatzelet Ariel at the Bar-Ilan University, under supervision of Rachel Sharabi and Menachem Topel, on the mutual responsibility of the members, in the renewed kibbutz system. The methodology used is the Multiple Case Study, applied on ten very different renewing kibbutzim all over Israel. Seventy members were interviewed, between them both, functionaries and ordinary members of the community and relevant documents were checked.

The findings show that all the kibbutzim realize the legal conditions of mutual responsibility, but we see much variation in the detail of each system, including different views about the limits of "the community." In fact in most of them it is the ideological motivation and not the law which is the main incentive factor for the members.

As the findings show, the members also feel mutual responsibility for the members' dependant special needs people even when they do not live in the community. The study investigates the feelings of personal implication and also the impact of this wide inclusion and responsibility of the members of the community.

 

Azati, Aharon, “A Composite Kibbutz or Inclusion Community?—Test Case of Kishorit and Kibbutz Kishor”

 

The communities of Kishorit and Kibbutz Kishor are located in the Tefen area of the Western Galilee in Israel. It is a unique integration model which provides the adults with special needs who are members of Kishorit a home for life and not less important a deep sense of social belonging and full membership in a community. These people, who are disabled and can not be changed, achieve maximum independence in their lives. They experience social belonging and community partnership.

The members of Kibbutz Kishor are mainstream kibbutz members, most of them are parents of members in Kishorit, professionals and others who believe in a supportive, integrated community that provides for the separate, individual and unique needs of each group, but encourages inclusion wherever and whenever it is possible and beneficial.

The founders adopt much of its therapeutic and rehabilitative philosophy from the Israeli kibbutz movement. The principal “each contributes to the community according to his ability and takes from the community according to his needs" is guiding their way.

In my presentation I'll be diagnosing the vision of the founders in day to day life: "The members of the rejuvenated Kibbutz Kishor and the members of Kishorit will enjoy a fully integrated community, with private residential areas and shared public spaces, celebrations, work, social activities and communal life. Kishor and Kishorit are championing a revolutionary model of rehabilitation and inclusion of people with special needs into the community."

In my lecture I intend to examine whether the declaration of the founders about the partnership and the integration of the two communities is actually fulfilled in reality. How the inclusive community is conducted, in the areas of partnership in decisions; economic, social and cultural activities.

 

Bang, Jan, and Anton Marks, “Storytelling in Community”

 

“If you don't know the trees you may be lost in the forest, but if you don't know the stories you may be lost in life.” (Siberian Elder)

 

          This workshop session will give those participating a chance to share stories about communal living. It will be an open session facilitated by Jan Martin Bang and hopefully Anton Marks, who between them have many decades of communal living. Stories can be prepared beforehand, and there will also be opportunities for structured and spontaneous storytelling on various communal themes.

Our aim is to create a space where members, residents and observers of communal living can share the rich tapestry that intentional fellowship creates.

We have access to a range of “triggers” that will help us to find stories based upon our own experiences. Participants will have an opportunity to tell stories about their own lives.

Because storytelling is basically a shared experience, we will limit numbers. If more than 20 or 30 attend we will probably split into two groups.

 

“We are lonesome animals. We spend all of our life trying to be less lonesome. One of our ancient methods is to tell a story begging the listener to say and to feel, ‘Yes, that is the way it is, or at least that is the way I feel it.’ You're not as alone as you thought.” (John Steinbeck)

Ben-Eliezer, Ephraim, and Martin Johnson, “Experiences of Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities and Persecution in a 100-Year-Old International Communal Movement”

 

Throughout the ninety-nine years of communal life of the Bruderhof, many individuals with disabilities of various kinds have been full members of this international movement, now of some 25 communal settlements around the world.  These settlements house from 12 to 350 individuals in the USA, UK, Germany, Australia, Paraguay and Austria. Individuals with physical, mental, age-related, medical and various behavioral disabilities are included in the daily life of the Bruderhof as much as feasible with attention and care from full medical staff, encouragement including visitation from children’s groups of all ages and strong spiritual encouragement.  Instances of inclusion of persons of various persecuted races are also touched on. Communal life can be a wonderful example of respect for such lives that can be and encouragement for all in regular society. An example of accepting persecuted persons is the hospitality given to Kindertransport children and a Kibbutz training group housed in the UK Bruderhof 1938-40.  Most of the members of this training group later settled in Kibbutz Hazorea in Israel. See “Distant Brothers” by Yaacov Oved etc.

The encouragement to the Bruderhof by the founding and existence of the original Israeli Kibbutz movement , [1933 and earlier onwards,] as well as the inspiring new Urban Kibbutz movement, in such related service will be mentioned including the extensive intervisitation with these groups from the Bruderhof, especially in the last decades. 

 

Blomaard, Pim, “Ritual and Relational Care”

In intentional communities like Camphill and other anthroposophical care institutions, rituals are part of daily life. They give structure in the experience of space and time and meaning. They unite people on a symbolic rather then cognitive level and give awareness of a higher uniting entity. As many other rituals they are losing sometime there power. How to deal with this loss in a time where people more and more long for (new) rituals? One answer is learning how to ritualise. To create or cocreate new rituals in the context of their special participants in a particular time and place.

In this sense rituals can be seen as part of Relational Care, as a method to enhance Person Centered Care (PCC). In homes for people with cognitive impairment (intellectual disability or dementia) rituals can help to establish PCC. In this workshop we will do exercises for learning to ritualise a personal situation of transition, in the context of relational caring or meeting.

 

Blue, Sky, and Avi Kruley, “More Than Microcosms: The Transformative Impact of Intentional Communities”

 

Humanity is in crisis. The feedback loop between larger society, the communities we live in, and our personal experiences reinforce systems of privilege and oppression that create harm--harm for people and the planet. How can we disrupt this loop?

As microcosms of (and alternatives to) mainstream society, intentional communities can help us understand ways to shift out of this harm. But what makes something an intentional community, and how is it relevant? To what extent does an intentional community counteract or reinforce systems of harm? Who needs to be involved and considered in the process of changing these systems?

Through presentation, discussion, and interactive exercise, this workshop provides a deeper understanding of and criteria for these multifaceted experiments known as intentional communities, as well as their relationship to society, current impact, and potential to support the transformation of our world.

 

Brennan-Krohn, Zoe, “From Camphill Coworker to ACLU Lawyer: Reflections, Perspectives, and Tensions in Disability Advocacy and Inclusion”

 

This presentation tracks my biography from a young Camphill coworker in Ireland in the early 2000s through my current role as a disability rights lawyer at the American Civil Liberties Union. I discuss evolving notions of inclusion and community through several lenses, including in my personal worldview; in the Camphill movement historically; and in a nationwide civil rights organization like the ACLU. I reflect on the ways in which Camphill continues to influence my career and worldview, and also the tensions between Camphill and the ACLU around notions of inclusion and community. I end with a specific discussion of the HCBS Rule and how the ACLU and Camphill conceptualize community and inclusion in that context.

 

Brookes, Jody, and Michael Hoy, “Drama and Invitation”

 

This drama workshop will explore theatre as a social therapy and social art. We will look at ways of enabling individuals to be seen in a light that speaks their truth. Drama is an integral part of community life, bringing people together in a way to receive the other more fully. We will explore the “personal portrait,” in a light hearted, humorous way, with an invitation to meet one another and also one’s self.

 

Brown, Susan Love, “Communal Societies and American Capitalism”

 

The United States has a history of intentional communities that organized themselves communally. They owned the land in common, made provisions for the distribution of food, shelter, and clothing communally, and shared common ideologies that created the moral framework for their everyday communalism. Their ideologies often seemed antithetical to the larger society of which they were a part. Nevertheless, many communal societies experienced incredible longevity within the individualistic and capitalistic American environment, marked by positive successes in the marketplace. Using the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Coming (the Shakers), whose history parallels that of the United States, I argue that their engagement in free enterprise was the key to their success, and that the theories of Donald Janzen (the national community/intentional community interface) and Donald Pitzer (developmental communalism) capture the nature of this phenomenon. Through this examination, I clarify the meaning of private property, of free enterprise, and the beginnings of American capitalism as inclusive of these communal societies and not exclusive of them.

 

Burmil, Shmuel, “Issues in the Study of a Community Landscape”

 

Intentional communities were and are well studied and documented from many aspects (e.g. social, economic). In contrast, the study of their landscape was and still is not well studied and documented. This paper outlines issues that can guide the study of a community landscape. At first it is important to try and identify if and how the ideology that the community is based on is reflected in its landscape, and if the landscape supports the specific way of life in the community. Specific attention to, and identification of the diversity in the landscape is needed. That should include diversity within the community's landscape as well as the landscape diversity between communities of the same or similar ideology and nature. Understanding the process - how the landscape became to be the way it is, should also be part of the research.

The research should be based on a wide and diverse range of methods. Study of written materials is needed for identifying and understanding the ideology and other aspects of the community. Local archives and libraries need to be explored too. Many site visits for observations and interviews should be an important element of the study. The paper will include examples from the study and publication on the landscape and gardens of the kibbutz that the author of this paper was part of.

 

Butcher, A. Allen, “Class Harmony Community”

 

“Class-harmony community” is a newly-coined name for a form of intentional community involving the capitalist ownership class, or landlords and investors in the community, and the working-class or renters, in contrast with Marxist-communist class-conflict. The class-harmony concept led in part to the coining of the term “socialist” first used by Owenites in 1827. For many working-class families with children who cannot afford to purchase real estate this provides an accessible form of community.

Class-harmony community is an old idea used by both religious and secular groups, including: Pythagorean community; some of the Early Christian Churches; the Hutterites from the 16th to the 19th centuries in Moravia, Transylvania, and Ukraine; the 18th century Moravians in Germany; and the 19th century Owenite and Associationist communities in America. About fifteen-percent of the groups in the 2016 Communities Directory are class-harmony communities, in which one person or a core-group (e.g., Ganas Community) owns the land and other assets.

 

Property-Sharing Continuum (i.e.: real estate, chattels, and money)

 

Shared Commonly-Owned Property                                                                               Shared Privately-Owned Property

_________________________________________________________________________________________

                                                                                                                                                    

Communal Society:        Economically-Diverse Community:      Equity-Sharing:        Class-Harmony Community:    

• Monasteries                           • indigenous tribalism                    • housing co-ops              • coliving                       

• Hutterites/Bruderhof             • community land trust                    • cohousing                      • cohouseholding    

• Twelve Tribes                                                                                                                       • shared-housing

• Federation of Egalitarian Communities                                                                 • Ganas Community (NY)

                                                                                                                                                • Camphill community

 

The terms “coliving” and “cohouseholding” arose in the 21st century. While cohouseholding involves a home-owner sharing with renters, the term “coliving” is used by for-profit developers providing private bedrooms with other spaces shared by a group of renters.

Together, equity-sharing and class-harmony community indicate a rightward economic trend away from communalism in the communities movement. A statistical analysis of these types of communities appearing in the Communities Directory provides a view of the trend toward the sharing of private property in community.

 

Camphill Academy Students, “Childhood at the Heart of Community: A Conversation with Camphill Academy Students in Curative Education”

 

In the context of intentional communities, Camphill is unique insofar as it is committed to intentional inclusivity—national, cognitive, generational, etc. In the context of Camphill in the US, Beaver Run and Beaver Farm—together known as the Camphill School—are unique insofar as children and youth are at the center of the community building impulse. What does it mean to have an intentional community oriented around children? Through our course in Contemporary Social and Political Issues in the Camphill Academy, we approached this question in light of three areas relevant to our community in the world today: anthroposophical curative education and social therapy, or more broadly speaking a holistic, spiritual impulse to practical work; intentional community; and special education.

          This session is an informal and intimate conversation for members of other Camphill communities interested in the work of the Camphill School, current and former Camphill Academy students, family members, and invited guests.

 

Camphill Village Minnesota, Camphill Communities Ontario, and Heartbeet Lifesharing, “Intentional Community and Quality of Life Assessments: Lessons, Experiences, and Thoughts for the Future”

 

          Many intentional communities have internal mechanisms to assess quality of life, work through community challenges, engage in strategic planning, and measure impact. In addition to these ongoing internal processes, many communities engage with external bodies through the provision of publicly-funded services, various forms of licensure, etc. In this panel, we will hear from three Camphill communities in North America who have participated in the Council on Quality and Leadership’s accreditation process. This process is unique insofar as it is not a regulatory “inspection,” but rather serves as an external tool for internal community development. We will explore what instigates such a quality of life assessment process, how all voices in the community can be engaged, and how communities make use of the process for their own transformation. We hope this panel will be of interest to other intentional communities, regardless of their relationship to external regulatory bodies, who are interested in the benefits and challenges quality of life assessments as well as how these forms might be adapted for unique communal contexts.

 

Carter, Erik, “Changing the Conversation: Research on Engaging Local Communities to Expand Inclusive Practices”

 

          A “community conversation” is a unique, asset-based approach for engaging a cross-section of diverse citizens—including people from both within and (especially) beyond the service system— in making local changes that enhance the lives of individuals with disabilities. This session will focus on the practice and power of this approach to spurring community-level changes in areas as diverse as inclusive education, integrated employment, and congregational inclusion. Learn a practical and powerful approach for launching local movements that invite ordinary citizens (not just the “usual suspects”) to be part of expanding inclusive opportunities and supports for community members with disabilities. In addition, discover how this approach can be used as a distinctive methodology for studying community perspectives and change efforts.

 

Cataldo, Lisa, and Joan Winchester, “Engaging Spiritual Diversity in Community: Lessons from L’Arche”

 

In our current cultural atmosphere, issues of diversity and inclusion become increasingly important, particularly as they touch upon the lives of those who have traditionally been marginalized. In an era of increasing division in American culture, notions like “identity” and “belonging” can become ambiguous, in danger of solidifying exclusion as much as they communicate invitation. This may be especially true in the context of faith and religious belonging. How does a community founded in connection to a particular spiritual tradition address and adapt to the complex and often conflicting dynamics around identity, belonging, faith, religion, and spirituality in our country today? How do we honor our traditions while committing to the value of increasing diversity and inclusion?

L’Arche – an international network of communities where people with and without intellectual disabilities share life together – has always espoused an attitude of welcome to people of all spiritual identities and none. At the same time, the foundational connection of L’Arche to the Catholic Christian tradition has largely shaped our identity and practices, often outside of deliberate reflection. Over the past three years, L’Arche USA has undertaken an intentional study of, and reflection on, the lived experience of spiritual diversity in our 19 communities. What we learned highlighted the importance of recognizing both the changing dynamics of American attitudes toward religion and spirituality, and the larger issue of holding the tensions inherent in honoring communal traditions while staying committed to greater diversity and inclusion. In this workshop, we will share the learnings from our project, and engage participants in reflecting upon their own processes of navigating the tensions inherent in intentional actions toward diversity, spiritual and otherwise.

 

Coates, Chris, “What Did We Say We Would Do and Did We Do It? A Vision Audit of a Cohousing Project after Five Years”

 

Forgebank Cohousing is a multi-award winning eco cohousing community consisting of private homes, community facilities, workshops/offices/studios and shared outdoor space. Around 65 adults and 15 children live there. Residents eat some meals together, make decisions by consensus, run a car club and food co-op and enjoy meeting neighbours along the pedestrianised street and in the Common House. The homes are built to Passivhaus and Code for Sustainable Homes (level 6) standards, and benefit from renewable technologies (solar, biomass and hydroelectricity).

The project is an ambitious attempt to find a way to live a lower impact lifestyle. Residents took part in a participative design process and helped to set the original vision, environmental targets and social norms that they hoped to achieve. These included aiming to: be intergenerational; encourage social interaction; be a cutting edge example of sustainable design and living; build a community based on ecological values; achieve Code for Sustainable Homes Level Six; build to Passivhaus standard; enable sustainable travel to central Lancaster; provide and maintain homes and community facilities; provide and maintain workshop/office space; have close links to Halton and the wider community; and act as a catalyst and inspiration.

The first residents moved in in 2012. This paper looks back over the first five years of the community and tries to assess how far the project achieved its original aim.

 

Cole, Joe, “Can Habermas Help Communities Talk about Racism? The Ideal Speech Situation and the Shift from Diversity to Racial Equity”

 

While many intentional communities embrace Diversity as a core value, the Communities Movement in the United States remains largely white. How might ethnically homogenous intentional communities shift from general ideals around diversity to specific commitments for addressing racism and racial equity? In this paper, I propose that the framework of Communicative Action in the work of Jürgen Habermas provides a starting point for such a shift towards justice and inclusion. Habermas distinguishes three domains of communicative action that are oriented towards reaching an understanding: the cognitive/objective, the normative/social, and the subjective/expressive. According to Habermas, these dimensions of communicative action are guided by built-in ideals calling us towards an “ideal speech situation” where each participant has equal opportunity to speak, question, and contribute, and where the outcomes of conversations are determined by the force of the best arguments and evidence. I will argue that the Ideal Speech Situation illuminates the foundations of discourse in collaborative and consensus-based communities, while also providing a doorway to a deeper engagement with the challenges of diversity, racism, and inclusion. Through the work of Seyla Benhabib, I will also discuss the limitations of Habermas’ approach and the need for value commitments that go beyond collaboration and diversity. After outlining the strengths and weaknesses of the Ideal Speech Situation for understanding communicative action within intentional communities, I will compare the framework with Shelly Tochluk’s suggestions on how to create a group culture for witnessing whiteness, building relations of justice, and addressing the challenges of racism. To apply these ideas, I will examine a case study of a mostly white intentional community that has committed to addressing racism. I conclude that Habermas, Benhabib, and Tochluk have helpful insights for communities who wish to shift their values from diversity to racial equity.

 

Davis-Brown, Karen, Caleb Kalinowski, and Christine Kowalenko, Camphill Village Minnesota: Sharing our CQL Findings and Experience”

 

In Fall 2018, Camphill Village Minnesota (CVM) participated in a comprehensive accreditation process offered by the Center for Quality and Leadership (CQL) that focused on CVM’s understanding of and capacity for providing person-centered services and quality of life for the people who live there. This process included extensive collection of qualitative data using structured interviews and guided observations, related to the following factors: Rights Protection and Promotion; Dignity and Respect; Natural Support Networks; Protection from Abuse, Neglect, Mistreatment and Exploitation; Best Possible Health; Safe Environments; Staff Resources and Supports; and Continuity and Personal Security. Teams that included both coworkers and people served conducted and documented the data and findings from this research.

This workshop will offer an examination and discussion of the larger issues raised by and for the CVM community, in this process. These issues include:

v    The centrality of healthy and open communication to community ownership of the process;

v    The value of systematic documentation and analysis in raising community consciousness regarding what it does well and could do better, and how to conduct them in ways that support rather than undermine individual and community relationships;

v    The challenges and strengths in aligning a quality of life assessment process with the underlying philosophy and values of the community; and

v    The importance of diversity and inclusion into the process, in ways they empower all members of the community.

The workshop will offer a verbal presentation and discussion regarding these issues, as well as a media presentation created by people with intellectual and developmental disabilities who live at CVM. The goal of the multimedia project is the formulation of narratives using photography, which will encapsulate how these factors are reflected in individuals’ daily lives. Juxtaposing the process evaluation discussion with the photo narratives will present a holistic, comprehensive and multi-faceted picture of CVM life.

 

Derkey, Sarah, and Chrystal Odin, “A Pattern of Our Own: Artistic Collaboration through Consensus”

 

This workshop will interactively design a piece of handwoven, visual art while participants learn some of the basic tenets and tools of consensus as offered by The Consensus Institute. The process will begin with “grounding and greeting” within the group. Chrystal will then lead the group through an “adaptive learning process,” starting with each participant’s individual sharing of their ideas for the design (color, texture, pattern, etc.). This activity will both discuss and model how to bring these individual suggestions into a consensual, harmonious whole.

People with intellectual/developmental disabilities will be able to take part in this process in a successful and rewarding way. Chrystal’s skills in listening and supporting people, and the fact that this is a creation of visual rather than purely verbal consensus; will allow everyone who attends to participate to the maximum extent that they choose.

All persons who wish to participate in this workshop should choose one of the three sessions on July 19. They may then attend as many of the “building block” sessions on July 20 as they wish. These are intended for participants to come and work on the piece at their leisure, putting the finishing touches on the piece. The final work will be offered on the July 21 as a gift to the gracious Camphill communities who are hosting the conference.

 

Dusingizimana, Zacharie, Natascha Hermann, and Viateur Uwambajimana, “The Rwandan approach of inclusion for people with disabilities: from being hidden and nameless to a community appreciating people’s diverse abilities”

 

Ubumwe Community Center (UCC) is a non-governmental local organization founded with the mission of caring for people with disabilities, to enable them to access a place where people explore their common humanity. It is located in Gisenyi, in the North Western Province of Rwanda.

After a long time of marginalization and discrimination of persons with disabilities due to the lack of awareness and knowledge of parents’ and the community we started the UCC with the aim to build up their inclusion and their independent living. Developing skills (e.g. tailoring) enables people with disabilities not only to become economically independent and start their own businesses but also being empowered and proud of the skills gained. Caring for the special needs through medical assistance and therapy (e.g. physiotherapy) as well as offering inclusive education were crucial steps taken towards a community which appreciates people’s distinctiveness.

Inclusive education is rooted in the idea that children with and without disabilities learn and socialize together- both in a school dedicated to inclusive education but also in pilot schools cooperating with UCC. The impact of inclusiveness means empowerment for all children and the wider community. It encourages learning new forms of communication (e.g. braille).

The Community Based Living program offers children and adults with severe disabilities the opportunity to be well integrated in the community whilst being able to benefit from UCC`s services. It has a tremendous impact on an inclusive community which takes an affirmative rather than adverse view on disability.

Future plans include the establishment of an anthroposophical teacher training. Currently first steps towards the curriculum development are being taken. In the panel we would like to apply the World Café-method to present the UCC`s holistic approach but also to benefit from the delegates` vast experiences contributing towards the further development of UCC`s community.

 

Duvall, Lorraine, “A Woman’s Place: An Adirondack Women’s Commune”

 

          The aim of this paper is to show what some women did from 1974 to 1982 to pursue their freedom from a patriarchy society where they were subservient to their husbands, denied jobs, and where sexually harassment was viewed as an acceptable norm. The story begins when seven women, in the fall of 1974, established a women-only community on twenty-three acres of land fifteen miles north of Lake George in Athol, New York. They hardly knew each other, having recently met at a women’s summer gathering in the nearby town of Paradox, New York. The abandoned Adirondack property they purchased consisted of a lodge, four cabins, and a barn. They called their commune A Woman’s Place to reflect their feminist ideal of providing a respite for women of all ethnic groups, classes, and sexual orientation to come together on common ground. Together with their eight children, the women left their suburban homes, relationships, and jobs to live communally sharing meals and childcare. They ranged in age from 21 to 33. Seventy-five women came and went over the eight years of its existence, living there from months to years, with four to ten women at any one time. Feminist retreats were held attracting 1000 women from Northeastern cities and suburbs until it closed in 1982, for financial reasons. Finances were a continual problem.

          Two major sources of data provide the basis for this study – historic documents and personal interviews with alumnae of A Woman’s Place. Newspapers in the Northeast, including The New York Times, reported on this daring experiment in the mountains. The Lesbian Herstory Archives in Brooklyn offers a rich array of materials on the day-to-day happenings in the community including minutes of internal meetings, legal documents used when problems arose, personal letters of its members, and old photographs. To date, twenty phone and personal interviews have been held with alumnae to discern what they were searching for at A Woman’s Place, and how it affected their lives. They currently live in the Northeast, the Mountain states, and Florida.

 

East, Jean—See Ambrose, Hunter

 

Fernandez, Kathleen, “‘He Loves Influence’: Joseph Bimeler’s Leadership Style”

 

Joseph Michael Bimeler, the Agent General of the Society of Separatists of Zoar, is a bit of an enigma to scholars. He rose from relative obscurity to leadership of the group as they traveled to America and wielded such great influence that he was able to hold the deed to their land in his name alone until his death. He deftly combined his skills in the business world with those in the spiritual realm. This paper will give an overview of Bimeler’s life and the ways he successfully led the Zoar Society from its beginnings in 1819 until his death in 1853.

 

Ferrara, Mark S., “Mulberry Family Commune: Creating Inclusive Community in the American South”

 

The emergence of communities accepting of same sex relationships and inclusive of nonconforming expressions of sexuality marks a distinctive contribution of the counterculture revolution to the history of American intentional living. Whereas Lesbian groups such as Womanshare and Oregon Woman’s Land Trust, and their male homosexual counterparts) generally practiced gender segregation, Stephen Lenton’s Mulberry Family Commune (1972-1987) in Richmond, Virginia stood against that trend. More than a LGBT boardinghouse, Mulberry Family was a communal association based on the family model. The openly gay, lesbian, bisexual, and heterosexual individuals who joined that marry band on Mulberry affirmed a commitment to protecting the well-being of everyone in the community, and they shared a vision of social equality that emerged out of the diverse views of its members. Based on archival research, this paper reveals the means by which Lenton and his friends created an intentional community guided by Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs that provided members with food and shelter; protected physical and psychological safety; satisfied love and belongingness needs; and increased self-esteem in members through expressions of “confidence, competence, mastery, adequacy, achievement, independence and freedom, and respect from others.” In this way, the Mulberry Family encouraged self-actualization—the realization of one’s full potential—in an environment where chores rotated without distinction by gender, where bathrooms were shared, and where bedrooms were typically kept private.

 

Ferrell, Amy, “From Inclusion to Community: Reframing Discourses of Inclusion in Special Education”

 

Leveraging a perspective of community as a site of mutual giving, I work to reframe the decades-long debate of inclusion in the field of special education. Instead of culturally derived and socially constructed norms of independence, achievement, and success as emancipatory, I propose that true community counters oppression, segregation, and control. In a true community, efforts toward inclusion become obsolete, as inclusion presumes a center where assimilative characteristics are required for access to the dominant norm. Informed by data from an ethnographic study in which I challenge idealized independence as necessary for access to the community for adults with developmental disabilities, I propose that a philosophy of community can reframe discourses of inclusion and diversity, especially with respect to the dualism of general and special education. Rather than conceptualizing inclusion as simply an issue of physical space, the distribution of resources, or even an instructional context, a discussion of community would render the long-time points of contention in the field as ancillary. Instead, consideration is given not only to the ways individuals contribute to the collective, but also to the process of each person’s edification toward their own belovedness, which occurs in community.

 

Freeman, Erik “The Slaveholding Critique of Communalism: American Southerners’ Attack on Fourierists, Mormons, and Oneida Perfectionists”

 

The long-held assumption that pro-slavery advocates from the American South only desired limited government and states’ rights throughout the nineteenth century has run its course. Recent scholarship shows that many prominent Southerners used the system of slavery as staunch capitalists and devoted imperialists. Matthew Karp’s This Vast Southern Empire (2017) claims that the roots of American Imperialism of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century stem from a group of powerful southern slaveholders who envisioned an expanding American empire “based on white supremacy, coerced labor, and aggressive state power.” These Southern imperialists were deeply interested in American communal societies. This paper argues that the language and rhetoric of these southern imperialists highly influenced communal societies such as the Fourierists, Oneida Perfectionists, and Mormons to alter their social, religious, and sexual practices and eventually assimilate into the American mainstream culture during the second half of the Nineteenth Century.

 

Furze, Melitta, “‘A Central European Woodstock’ in Achberg 1974: The Social ideas of Joseph Beuys and the Connection to the Camphill Community”

 

The 1974 “summer congress” at Achberg featured Joseph Beuys and such ideas as “the social sculpture” and “the extended idea of art.” It was a time of social awakening and peaceful revolutionary ideas. Beuys declared that “the only revolutionary power is the power of human creativity, the only revolutionary power is art.”

The east had communism, the west had capitalism, and in Achberg Joseph Beuys, Peteo Shilinski, Ota Sî (Praque Spring), Wilhelm Schmund, and many others tried to draft, to sketch a new world: “A Socialism with a Human Face,” “The Third Way between Communism and Capitalism,” or “The Social Sculpture.”

I joined this congress, met Beuys, and heard about his ideas. Those ideas and the whole situation at that congress touched and influenced me through my whole following life, which I then spent in Camphill Communities. The connection, the bridge, between Achberg and Camphill are the, more or less, same ideas which arise out of the Anthroprosophy by Rudolf Steiner. But as an artist Beuys had the possibility to create these ideas in his very special artistic way. 

During the Second World War, in 1939, when Jewish and disabled people had to flee centra Europe, Karl König founded the first Camphill as a refuge in Scotland. Besides only providing safety and shelter he invented a new Therapeutic Center. The art of Beuys and the therapy of König can combine to support each other and ray out into society.

How can ART, in the way Beuys describes it, be the most important way to form an individual and to give ideas and impulses to an intentional community? And how can the idea of “The Social Sculpture” build a bridge from an Intentional Community to Society?

 

Gallo, Marcella, Jorge Gruber, Nastia Khlopina, Abby Nathanson, and Maihan Wali, “Religious and Cultural Diversity in an Intentional Community”

 

The benefits of spending a year of service after college are becoming more known (check out the recent study conducted by Service Year and Burning Glass Technologies!) and intentional religious communities are anything but novel. But what happens when a small Episcopal church in rural upstate New York creates its own fellowship program open to young seekers of truth from all spiritual backgrounds—from anywhere in the world—who wish to spend a year in meaningful reflection as they prepare for careers in service for the common good? This workshop will deepen attendees’ understanding of the important role of spiritual and cultural diversity within intentional community. Presenters will draw upon their personal experience as individuals who came together from Christian, Muslim, atheist/agnostic, New Age and Eastern religious frames of thought—and from vastly different cultural backgrounds resulting from Russian, Afghan, Venezuelan, Floridian, Kenyan and Hawaiian upbringings—to create an intentional community as they live and serve through Grace Year, a yearlong fellowship for spirituality, leadership and justice in Millbrook, N.Y. To broaden their scope, presenters will also use real life examples to illustrate the role that religious and cultural diversity has played in their lives as a whole and has shaped their current community values. Our workshop will be interactive. Come learn about our individual and collective journeys and

reflect upon how together we can further the discussion about the importance of honoring and embracing difference in intentional community.

 

Ganany-Dagan, Orly, “The Impact of Inclusive Entrepreneurship on an Intentional Kibbutz Community”

 

This study is part of a research project on "intentional communities and inclusion" being conducted at the Yad Tabenkin Research Institute. Its research objective is to examine the impact of local inclusive entrepreneurship on an anthroposophical kibbutz community. The research question is, “How do such projects carried out at Kibbutz Harduf impact the community culture and daily practices of the community members?”

The research combined quantitative and qualitative research methods. Thirty in-depth interviews were held and a questionnaire was administered to all the residents of the kibbutz. The questions addressed implementation of the kibbutz ideology, and entrepreneurship practices in the daily life of the kibbutz, as well as satisfaction with social and community challenges and problem-solving processes.

This is a pioneer study of the Harduf community. The structure of the inclusion initiatives at Harduf is innovative, in that people with special needs live and participate in the local community. The research included four examples of inclusive enterprise at Kibbutz Harduf; they combine ideology, education, and practice, and encompass diverse population groups. Examination of the impact of an included population on community members is also new in this field of research.

Kibbutz Harduf was founded in 1982 in the Nahal Zippori region of the Lower Galilee, within the jurisdiction of the Jezreel Valley Regional Council, by a group of young people and families who wanted to establish a new type of kibbutz community, associated with anthroposophy. In time, extensive activity developed at Harduf in the fields of education, rehabilitation, medicine, the arts, agriculture, and organic food. There is an encounter at the kibbutz between two ideological approaches: a cooperative-community approach based on cooperative and collective values, and the anthroposophical approach. The community members encounter both these ideologies in their daily life and implement them in different practices. These practices include working life and community togetherness after work; they are expressed in a composite of lifestyles, and in the inclusion of people with special needs who live in the community, a school based on anthroposophical teachings, an active culture life, and more. Analysis of the impact of the inclusion on the local community is a new field of research.

 

Gill, Michael, “What About Home? Community & Care Labor”

 

Susan Burch reminds us, “everyone has to be somewhere” (“Dislocated Histories: The Canton Asylum for Insane Indians,” Women, Gender, and Families of Color 2 [2014]:142). Burch continues, “But contests abound over “where” some people belong; inextricably linked are considerations of “with whom” and “to whom” people belong. As critical scholars, we also must attend to “why” as well as “who decides.” Retrieving dislocated histories—stories “put out of usual or proper place, position, or relationship” and “disrupted”— provide alternative ways of repopulating the past.”

The 2011 Emmy Nominated HBO documentary, Raising Renee (Jeanne Jordan and Steven Ascher) narrates the story of sisters Beverly and Renee McIver. Beverly is asked to take care of Renee by their aging mother once she dies. The recent BBC film, Village of Dreams (Jack Archer) documents a year in Camphill Newton Dee (Aberdeen Scotland). Both films amplify issues related to care labor, aging, and assumptions of the meaning of community and home for those with labels of intellectual disabilities. Yet, the differences between the two films – and the individuals at the center of these films – also invite an inquiry into the meaning of community and care labor.

In this paper I read the two films together to explore the meaning of community. How does the film understand the community building work of people with labels of intellectual disabilities especially when sometimes individuals are constructed as needing to be taken care of by others without disabilities? Importantly the films raise the issue of how disabled individuals are subject to shrinking government support that jeopardizes their ability to live connected to their communities and in jeopardy of being placed in institutional settings. As such, I explicitly argue for increased government assistance in a time of austerity to facilitate reciprocal interdependent relationships.

 

Greenberg, Daniel, “Ecovillage Education: Past, Present, and Future”

 

Ecovillages are communities striving to live high quality lifestyles with low ecological footprints. Given their integrated and human-scale, “local solutions to global problems” there is growing interest in collaborating with ecovillages as “campuses” for sustainability education. Many organizations have attempted to meet this demand, including the Global Ecovillage Network, Gaia Education, Gaia University, Living Routes, CAPE Consulting, and more. Following a brief overview of ecovillages and the history and description of the primary players, we will compare the hidden curricula of ecovillage vs. mainstream education and explore possible current trends and possible future directions.

 

Gruber, Jorge—See Gallo, Marcella

 

Harper, Colin, “The Dialectic of Inclusion and Exclusion: The Human Right to Exclude Oneself from ‘the Community’ in a Community and Article 19 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD)”

 

Article 19 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities addresses the human rights of persons with disabilities with respect to “living independently and being included in the community.” This paper considers some tensions within article 19 and explores some issues it raises for intentional communities which specifically seek to include people with disabilities, such as Camphill communities. It does so in the light of the available preparatory materials of the UNCRPD, the jurisprudence of the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and the literature around the meaning of and implementation of article 19.

In the jurisprudence of the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, “inclusion in the community” is largely interpreted through opposition to “institutional living.” However, the Committee’s General Comment No. 5 and its discussions of state practice fail to articulate clearly what counts as “institutional living” for disabled people. It also fails to recognise the positive nature and role of many “institutions” broadly conceived. “Choice and control” by the disabled person is constructed in a way which appears to rule out the acceptability of independently choosing to live in an institution (such as Camphill community or a residential school for people with disabilities). In particular cases, a living environment focused on the inclusion of disabled people within itself may not be an institution for the purposes of the UNCRPD.

An alternative approach to the interpretation of article 19 is provided which mitigates a view which tends to see intentional communities as essentially human rights violating institutions for people with disabilities. This interpretation emphasises the importance of counteracting the hermeneutic blindness created by the absence of the human right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion from the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

 

Hart, Amy, “‘We Had Everything but a Jail, to Tell You the truth!’ An Exploration of Historical Communities of Color in the United States”

 

Throughout United States history, most intentional communities have been disproportionately populated by white, middle-class participants. This disproportional representation of whites in communities is inextricably tied to the long history of race-based slavery in the United States, which made mobility and economic independence virtually impossible for most African Americans. Despite this reality, some black slaves found creative ways of escaping bondage and forming their own communities, referred to as “maroon societies,” in which fugitive slaves would live together in hiding from slaveholders. These communities were formed out of desperation and necessity, but also served as sites of mutual support and protection for people of color, as well as set the stage for the formation of African American communities in later years. Following passage of the Thirteenth Amendment and national abolition of slavery, communities led and populated by people of color emerged across the United States. Like maroon societies, these post-emancipation communities offered spaces in which African Americans could escape the economic and social discrimination that continued to be widespread for the duration of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

This presentation will explore the history of communities led and populated by people of color in the United States, reflecting on the questions that emerge when considerations of legal slavery, racism, and segregation form the basis of the communal experience. The presentation will highlight case studies from different periods of U.S. history, including the mid-eighteenth century free black settlement known as Fort Mose in Spanish Florida, the late-nineteenth century African American community of Mound Bayou in the Mississippi Delta, and the early-twentieth century African American community of Allensworth near Tulare, California. By examining those communities that emerged as a response to race-based slavery and discrimination, a new historical perspective on the roles that intentional communities have played for diverse groups can emerge.

 

Heartbeet Lifesharing—See Camphill Village Minnesota

 

Heberton, Renata—See Ambrose, Hunter

 

Hermann, Natascha—See Dusingizimana, Zacharie

 

Hill, Leigh—See Ambrose, Hunter

 

Hixon, Linda, “The Outcast Race: Diversity in the Hopedale Community”

 

The Johnson family lived like many free blacks in the antebellum north. They struggled to support themselves, and with both parents working their two sons were often forced to live with others. Around 1850, the family relocated to the small Practical Christian Community of Hopedale, Massachusetts, finally finding a place they could live together.

Hopedale began when a group of like-minded progressive Christians decided to create their own quasi-communal living arrangement. They moved to “The Dale” in late 1841, basing their community on New Testament principles and liberal ideas including anti-slavery, women’s rights, temperance, and personal equality for all. But that equality was part of a larger ideal – that all were truly created equal, regardless of the color of their skin.

The Johnson family were not the only people of color to find safe haven in Hopedale. Adin Ballou mentions Rosetta Hall, a member of the “wronged and outcast race” in his History of the Hopedale Community. Rosetta had escaped bondage and appealed to Frederick Douglass for help. The members of the Community agreed to take Rosetta in, “where she would be among friends who would see that no harm came to her.” Surprisingly, the group decided Rosetta could stay as long as she needed, but would have to “work for her board, education, etc.” Yankee values extended only so far in this working town.

Rosetta Hall didn’t stay long in Hopedale. The Johnson family was the only black family to attempt to settle in the original Community, although local historians cling to the theory that Hopedale was a hotbed of Underground Railroad activity. Can the inclusion of a few black names and questionable sources reflect antislavery activity living up to the Practical Christian hype? This paper will try to find the truth of diversity in Hopedale.

 

Hoy, Michael—See Brookes, Jody

 

Hussaini, Ali—See Ambrose, Hunter

 

Johnson, Martin—See Ben-Eliezer, Ephraim

 

Kalinowski, Caleb—See Davis-Brown, Karen

 

Khlopina, Nastia—See Gallo, Marcella

 

Kowalenko, Christine—See Davis-Brown, Karen

 

Kiesel, Yannick, “Life in De Kersentuin: Examining the Characteristics of a Sustainable Cohousing Project”

 

This paper focuses on cohousing as a sustainable and alternative form of urban living. In times of a lack of adequate and affordable housing in urban areas (especially in North America and Europe) and the need for energy efficient cities and sustainable housing to fight climate change, new forms of urban living projects develop that fight the current societal standard of urban living. Therefore, I carried out a case study in “De Kersentuin,” a 15-year old cohousing project, located in the urban area of Utrecht/The Netherlands. I wanted to examine the different complex factors of such a community to make it work for 15 years and beyond, and how this community is able to define sustainability on a new level. The main characters include the people living in “De Kersentuin” and their story of creating this unique community that is able to tackle the symptoms of anonymity and ignorance in growing urban areas and act in self-empowerment to organize their community by themselves. Cohousing can be one of the solutions of our time to combine the life in cities with the sense of community of rural areas. It can influence urban policy so citizens are able to overtake the states responsibility to create an acceptable and affordable living space.

This story can speak to everyone that is interested in urban development and a life of more social contact inside cities. Where you know your neighbor, where you have intimate social relations and a unique community-like process. The research was carried out as an ethnographic study with me spending time in this community, getting to know the people and including my own personal development throughout this time.

The research covers several topics like mix-tenure interaction and the influence of the building structure, self-empowerment of citizens, urban commons management, inclusion of new residents, the blurriness between the perception of public and private space, the factor of time or the like. It would be possible to set a focus on only one of the examined topics as the research was aiming to provide a holistic view over the complexity of cohousing.

 

Kruley, Avi—See Blue, Sky

 

L’Arche Boston North, “Acting on Inclusion: Creative Spiritual Explorations with L’Arche for Inclusive Community with People with Disabilities”

 

This workshop invites participants to engage in a series of practical exercises in inclusion that welcome and celebrate a broad spectrum of intellectual difference. At the forefront of this workshop will be the inclusive spiritual practices of the communities of L’Arche. These practices will be adapted in dialogue with Augusto Boal’s Theater of the Oppressed to create space for participants to explore together how to embody and enact inclusion. The workshop aims to be an instance of learning and imagining together how to enter what Jean Vanier, the founder of L’Arche, describes as “a new world […] not the world of efficiency, competition, success and power, but the world of the heart, of vulnerability, communion and celebration” (Vanier, The Heart of L’Arche, 32).

L’Arche communities are places wherein people with and without disabilities share life together. There are currently over 150 communities in 38 different countries. One common spiritual practice of the communities is the dramatic re-enactment of inclusive scenarios that symbolically bring to life the radical inclusivity of the new world Vanier writes about. When these practices are drawn into dialogue with Boal’s Theater of the Oppressed, they open up even more powerful possibilities for inclusive community across difference. As Boal notes, Theater of the Oppressed can “help enable the de-mechanisation of the body and the mind alienated by the repetitive tasks of the day-to-day” (Boal, The Aesthetics of the Oppressed, 5).

          This workshop will be an opportunity to have some fun participating in several of the inclusive practices of L’Arche that have particular synergy with Theater of the Oppressed activities. In this way, perhaps we might all go back to our communities with hearts, minds, and bodies de-mechanized of exclusionary practices towards people of different intellectual capacity and ready to enter a new world of radical inclusion.

Members of the L’Arche Boston North community from Haverhill, Massachusetts will present this workshop. Each presenter is also an experienced member of either the L’Arche Boston North Presentation Team or the L’Arche USA Inclusion Team. More detailed individual biographies will be available at the workshop.

 

Lavi, Aharon Ariel, “From the Kibbutz to the Urban Kibbutz: The New Wave of Diverse Intentional Communities in Israel”

 

Israel is well known for its long-standing Kibbutz movement, of over 400 Kibbutzim, arguably the largest movement of communes and intentional communities in modern history. However, since the mid-1980's this movement started dissolving both financially and socially, as well as moving away from its original ideology towards a more privatized forms of living. As a result, and almost immediately, young entrepreneurs of the time decided to reinvent the concept of intentional communities in Israel, and started seeding new ones, albeit with several major differences: 1) Relocating to urban, rather than rural, setting; 2) Focusing on social activism and education instead of agriculture and industry; and 3) Incorporating almost all different sectors of Israeli society (as opposed to the Kibbutz movement, which was dominated by secular Jews from European origin). These new communities, called "Mission Driven Communities", operate using stable democratic structures, hence strengthening social solidarity.

The movement has grown rapidly since the 1980's, and today there are over 200 such communities all over the country (besides the 400 classic Kibbutzim), organized in 15 different networks representing different sectors, some of them privileged (such as the secular-Ashkenazi or religious-Zionist) and some of them have been historically marginalized and are using intentional communities for self-empowerment as well as social activism (such as Ethiopians, Mountain Jews, Druze, Bedouin and more). In 2011, all of these networks decided to unite under one umbrella organization called MAKOM, despite the stark differences and ideological gaps between them.

This paper will explore the historical processes that led to this phenomenon and its current form; explain the eco-system that enabled this rapid growth; and draw some major lessons from the inter-sectorial collaboration, represented by MAKOM, lessons that might be useful for other persons and organizations committed to diversity, inclusion, and empowerment.

 

Lavi, Aharon Ariel, “Hakhel – Gather the People: From a Dissolving Sense of Community to Communal Intentionality”

 

Jewish civilization has a long-standing tradition of living in communal structures, many of whom could be defined as intentional communities to various degrees. The most well-known manifestation of this tradition in the recent generation is the famous Kibbutz movement, but its ideological and sociological roots go far beyond the 20th century.

As described elsewhere, Israel has sprouted an abundance of intentional communities that succeeded the Kibbutz movement to a large extent, in different shapes and forms. This paper, however, will focus on the Jewish Diaspora outside the State of Israel and will ask in what ways has Diaspora Jewry responded to the dissolving sense of community, prevalent in Western civilization in general, and to what extent was it influenced by the Israeli process? In what ways do young Jews, often with their non-Jewish partners and friends, organize their lives in intentional communities around a sense of belonging, meaning and identity?

 

Lloyd-Moffett, Stephen R., “The Community that Experiences Together, Stays Together: Finding unity in profound shared experiences”

 

The question of how to best create harmony among diverse members of a community has long plagued both scholars and practitioners. This paper will examine the way that shared experiences form a basis for communal harmony. I will concentrate on three different sources of shared experiences: spiritual experiences, tragic events, and drug-induced experiences. Drawing upon the research within the field of Religious Studies regarding shared religious experiences within non-residential religious groups such as churches, synagogues, and sanghas, I hope to extend this research into other kinds of experiences and into communal living environments. The hypothesis is that profound, shared experiences provides a new common basis for unity among people that comes to supersede the diverse identity markers that individuals carried into communities; thus, the internal collective narrative of a community is formed by stories of the experiences shared. Religiously-oriented communities present the most natural fit for this analysis as religious communities have long been recognized as some of the most stable, impactful, and longest-lasting of communal living forms. Tragic events such as natural disasters, dramatic setbacks, and untimely deaths often are perceived as destructive to the community but can, in turn, unite the remaining group as it re-forms itself after tragedy. Drug-induced events represent another (yet controversial) category because it can initiate the conscious creation of a shared experience. Though these drug-induced experiences can be dismissed as artificial, as Deborah Altus commented after her years on research on communities, “It seems that the communities that trip together, stay together.” While this paper will not be an exhaustive examination of the question of shared experience within community, it hopes to explore the theoretical frameworks relevant to this question and draw from a wide-variety of examples from historical and contemporary communal experiments.

 

Marks, Anton—See Bang, Jan

 

Marks, Anton, “Kibbutz Mishol - How an Urban Kibbutz Is Building a Shared Community of Jews and Palestinian Arabs in the Israeli city of Nazareth Illit”

 

Kibbutz Mishol, the biggest urban kibbutz in Israel, has 150 people all living under one roof. Established 20 years ago, it is a full-income sharing community of educators committed to working for the betterment of Israeli society. This presentation will focus on two projects that the kibbutz has taken upon itself. Firstly, the local public elementary school, with a student intake of roughly 30% Israeli Palestinian Arab, is being run by kibbutz members, from the principal to the teaching staff. The challenges of running a school in a socio-economically deprived area, with students representing different, national, religious and ethnic groups, is a challenge which brings with it both opportunities and failures.

In addition, the presentation will look at the Bustan Community, a social, cultural and activist community of Jews and Palestinian Arabs from the city of Nazareth Illit, also established by members of the urban kibbutz.

For those that are looking for examples of co-operation and seeds of what a shared society could look like in the complicated Israeli reality, this session will be of genuine interest.

 

Metcalf, Bill, “Diversity and Inclusion in Intentional Communities across Australia, Across Time”

 

I shall discuss my 25+ year-long project, The Encyclopedia of Australian Utopian Communalism, in which I try to collect information about every intentional community which has been seriously planned, or existed, in Australia. There are well over 700 entries in the data-base, which continues to grow as I uncover more historical and contemporary groups.

There are three stages to the project: In the first stage I opportunistically collect what I can for the database, sometimes little more than a name, vague location and time. This means that in century or so, there will at least be some record to help future historians. In the next stage, as time permits, I chase up whatever information I can and copy it into digital and paper files for each entry. In the final stage I conduct exhaustive research, write it up and publish as a peer-refereed journal article, book or book chapter. In my will, all this material, along with sufficient money to have it professionally archived, goes to the “Rainbow Archives” within the State Library of New South Wales, Sydney, so there will be a permanent record of my life’s work.

In 2010, in Utopianism: A Very Short Introduction (p. 65) Professor Lyman Tower Sargent wrote that “Australia appears to have had more … intentional communities per capita than any country other than Israel.” Sargent’s assertion is proving to be abundantly correct, and this suggests I might never complete the Sisyphean task I have set myself.

I will discuss my research methods and present a macro analysis of the results. A key analytical factor is the drive for diversity or homogeneity, for inclusion or exclusion. Too much diversity and inclusion is just as bad as too much homogeneity and exclusion. Boundary maintenance/permeability is crucial. Diversity and Inclusion are problematic concepts for intentional communities.

 

Miereczko, Birte, “Reaching Out and Inviting In – The Challenges of a Camphill Community”

 

This presentation explores the challenges of a Camphill Community that is the only one of its kind in the country—in this case, France. In this context, making community means reaching out, inviting in, transparency and openness. As a consequence, being isolated from the wider movement has played in the community’s favour. The necessity to work with others has become a driving force in the thriving of the community. This presentation examines how all co-workers, people with special needs, board members and volunteers are actively involved in creating a community that is open to welcome in and willing to go out and be present in the local area. It speaks about professionalism in the social work realm as well as the “art de vivre” (the art of living) in day to day life. It highlights everyone’s responsibilities and capacities to contribute to the well-being of the community.

 

Miller, Tim, “God’s Land, Open to All: High Ideals vs. Mundane Reality”

 

Throughout the history of intentional communities, but especially over the last half century, some highly idealistic intentional communities differed from most of their communal predecessors and peers by having an open-door policy: anyone who showed up could live there. That policy was not without its problems, and some communes abandoned it or perhaps even closed because it was not working well. Some of its proponents, however, believed that the opening of communal space to all represented nothing less than the dawning of a new social era, and have argued that the concept has never failed so much as it has never really been tested properly.

Underlying the open-land experiments was a presumption that ownership of land and property is itself is a profound social evil, a root cause of many of the ills that afflict human societies today. In several cases communes have thus decided to divest themselves of formal ownership of real estate. How do you do that without just giving it away? One answer is to give it to God. But that is more easily said than done.

Open land and God’s land are not congruent concepts; some communal founders and supporters retained private title to their property even while opening it to all who would settle there. They are, however, intertwined, and constitute an intriguing sidebar to the larger tradition of intentional community. This paper will outline several God’s-land and open-land experiments over the last two centuries, mainly in the United States.

 

Murphy, Thomas N., “Spirituality and Inclusion: Creative Spiritual Ideas from L’Arche for Inclusive Community with People with Disabilities”

 

What role does living in and from a sense of spirituality play in creating inclusive communities? This paper takes up this question by examining the inclusive spiritual practices of the communities of L’Arche. L’Arche communities are places wherein people with and without disabilities share life together. Founded in France by Jean Vanier in 1964, there are currently over 150 communities in 38 different countries. A common Charter guides the communities, along with an Identity and Mission statement, emphasizing the manner in which L’Arche “celebrate[s] the unique value of every person and recognize[s] our need of one another” (Identity & Mission Statement). Central to the mission of L’Arche is a spirituality marked by welcome of human vulnerability and difference.

This paper will take up a conceptual and practical overview of the spirituality of L’Arche and highlight its potential to contribute to inclusive communities broadly speaking, both within and beyond those that embrace any particular spirituality. Towards this end, the paper will proceed in three movements: (1) An opening section discusses the primary idiom of inclusion in L’Arche, which flows from its founding by Vanier in Christian spirituality and a biblical mandate to welcome marginalized persons. (2) The paper will then highlight some dramatic and playful spiritual practices that L’Arche utilizes to move beyond purely cognitive ways of knowing and learning and engage the body and affect in the work of inclusion. (3) The dramatic practices of inclusion of L’Arche will be examined via the analytic concept of Universal Design for Learning to uncover how the practices might contribute to inclusion in secular or non-spiritual community settings.

Finally, the presentation will invite participants to share their own wisdom on the role that spirituality and dramatic and embodied practices of inclusion might play in deepening a commitment to inclusion within their own communities.

 

Mychajluk, Lisa, “Learning Sustainability in the Ecovillage - Findings from Dancing Rabbit and Twin Oaks, with Focused Consideration of how Diversity, Inclusion and Empowerment Play into ‘Learning Sustainability’”

 

This paper presents early thoughts and findings on research in progress. My dissertation research, which began in October 2018, is an exploration of “learning sustainability” through participation and praxis in the ecovillage. Four North American ecovillages are the focus of this multiple case-study research. The research explores the “what” and the “how” of ecovillage-based sustainability education and learning, as experienced by both visitor/students and ecovillage residents. Furthermore, the ecovillage itself is considered as a “learning environment,” and whether it is socially and ecologically supportive of the development of a sustainability practice. Consideration is also given to how such sustainability practices are co/constructed and maintained – within and beyond the ecovillage. This research is guided by an overarching question about the potential for ecovillage-based education and learning to support “learning our way out” of unsustainable living patterns, and “learning our way in” to a sustainable way of planetary living.

I will present early findings based on data collected at two ecovillages: Dancing Rabbit (Missouri, USA) and Twin Oaks (Virginia, USA). Particular attention will be given in the paper/presentation to findings that align with the conference themes of diversity, inclusion, and empowerment, as (arguably) these themes could be considered part of a broader notion of sustainable community, and of “learning sustainability” and developing a sustainability practice.

 

Nathanson, Abby—See Gallo, Marcella

 

Odin, Chyrstal—See Derkey, Sarah

 

Odula, Victor, “They Call us the Burdens,” Understanding the Emotional Troubles of HIV/AIDS Orphaned Children in Homa Bay District, Kenya.

 

The death of parents is a great loss to children but it is even worse when it is from HIV/AIDS. Homa Bay district is the home to more than 30,000 orphaned children whose parents have died mainly from HIV/AIDS related complications. At a time when the HIV/AIDS prevalence nationally is stabilizing at 7%, Homa Bay District has a prevalence of 21%. It was expected that the extended family safety net would manage to absorb the orphans and reintegrate them into the mainstream families to enable them lead normal lives. But the situation is not that rosy, the safety net has been perforated and in an area where poverty prevalence is as high as 74.4%, there is evidence that these children undergo emotional trauma in the community, schools and in the extended families where they are absorbed. HIV/AIDS orphans specifically withstand social isolation, neglect and discrimination after the loss of their parents. Girls are particularly vulnerable as they are forced to go through hard chores eventually succumbing to early marriages and pregnancies. This paper sheds light into the troubled lives of these children in the largely remote inaccessible rural areas of Homa Bay county were randomly sampled and included in the study. Focus Group Discussions were undertaken with school children and drawings, poems and role plays by the children were analyzed to understand the emotional challenges they face. It is recommended that the social safety nets be strengthened and counseling and psychosocial support programs be instituted in schools among others. Milimani Academy is a school in Rusinga Island in Homa Bay County is a school orphanage. The aim of the project is to create a conducive place to learn, play and live for the Kenyan orphans. The design reinvents traditional form to suit the need of a large institutional and housing facilities by innovating on appropriate local building material and technology. It is planned as a self-sustaining village with the clear zoning of programs. The public area like training center, community hall, and farm are located near the front of the property. Homes for the orphans are toward the back protected by the schools and farm in between. A wide circulation spine links all components together and increases the legibility and accessibility within the site. This 'Interaction spine' is the place where children will interact, play and learn. The village will provide homes for 100 orphaned children and education facilities for more than 500 children.

Apart from learning at school, the children also sustain themselves by working on a farm, learning to lead farmers’ life and acquiring necessary skills. Milimani aims to help it’s graduates successfully intergrate into the society. The school is looking for support, networking from other like minded people or organization.

 

Ortiz, Geraldine, Carrie Schuchardt, and John Schuchardt, “Special Needs – Special Care

Sharing Life with Refugees in Community with Adults with Special Abilities”

 

In 1990 the House of Peace opened its doors as an intentional community serving victims of war in companionship with adults with special needs and gifts. The founding vision was, and remains, simple and challenging: We shall confront the suffering of the earth and its displaced peoples with a thought of the heart manifested in community life….

Located on four acres of land in Ipswich, MA, thirty miles north of Boston, along the coast of Cape Ann, the House of Peace has received hundreds of guests in need of the healing forces of community life. Based upon the principles of Social Threefoldness as given by philosopher and social/spiritual scientist, Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925), and upon the dynamics of Social Therapy as embodied in the worldwide Camphill Movement, the House of Peace confronts the ever escalating tragedy of war-broken children and tragically displaced refugees with ongoing attempts to create a sanctuary of shelter and protection.

As well as serving asylum seekers and refugees in transition, representing more than 30 countries, the community receives a steady stream of children, mostly from Iraq and Syria, who have suffered devastating injuries in war. Hospitality for these traumatized children and their family members extends for the duration of medical treatment given by Boston hospitals. In our workshop, members of the community will describe this particular form of lifesharing where people in need of special care are included and empowered to give special care. It is our commitment that those with special needs have a right, a gift, even a responsibility, as we all have, to give special care. With the help of photographs, stories of our people, and reflections from one of our members currently seeking political asylum, we will present a view of this microcosm of community where desperate parents, war-disoriented children, veterans of war and experienced peacemakers, students, the dying and soon-to-be-born have come together to form our life, re-form our vision, and bless our every day and night. We hope this will lead to a lively dialogue with workshop participants interested in exploring new forms of intentional community.

 

Paholak, Maggie, “Spacial Dynamics”

 

          Spacial Dynamics is a movement practice designed to illumine and enhance the relationship between the human body and space. Spacial Dynamics trains people to move effectively and connect more deeply to their personal space and the space they share with others. It was developed by Jaimen McMillan, building on Rudolf Steiner’s spiritual science of anthroposophy. In this workshop, Maggie Paholak of Triform Camphill Community will introduce some of the core practices of Spacial Dynamics.

 

Paulino da Silva, Gleice, “Stories, Relationship-Building, and Transformative Adult Education”

 

In this session, Gleice will present on her graduate research into curative stories. Gleice is a graduate of the Camphill Academy’s training program in Curative Education, and this session will also offer an overview of the Camphill Academy’s training programs and unique, community-based approach to adult education. As Gleice describes the curative story: The “curative story” is a pedagogical tool which students learn to develop in the context of the Camphill Academy course “The Art of Storytelling.” As part of this course, students learn to write stories for a particular child/young adult that they have worked with. During the process of writing a curative story, students go through a transformative path which allows them to develop empathy, contemplation skills and a deep sense of responsibility for the other. This process as well and stories written by the presenter and the students will allow the listener to understand how this process leads to strengthened relationships.

 

Plant, Andrew, “The Impact of Diversity and Inclusion on the Camphill Communities in the UK”

 

Unlike so many other intentional communities that seek to open up their communities to others, the Camphill communities in the UK have been struggling to cope with the effects of diversity and inclusion. In the early years the Camphill communities were socially cohesive and exclusive, had clearly articulated spiritual and cultural values and high levels of commitment and conformity. They were marginal - the co-workers were refugees and they cared for children with learning disabilities. They were located in large houses out in the country and had high boundaries that separated them from the world. Camphill co-workers – often families and their children and short-stay young volunteers lived and worked alongside people with learning disabilities.

75 years later many things have changed.

Today there are diverse social, economic and managerial arrangements in place – both within communities and among the communities.There are some co-workers who live in the communities, who life-share and uphold the traditional values and practices of Camphill. There are employees who live out and come in to work in the communities and perhaps have less commitment to the values of Camphill and community. There are some on “pocket money,” some on “trust money,” and others who are salaried.

There is a new agenda for the support of people with learning disabilities with a focus on inclusion, empowerment, choice and co-production. The people with disabilities have always been included in their communities – in terms of life-sharing, work and social and cultural activities, but to what extent in terms of decision-making?

With so much diversity it is becoming increasingly difficult to define a Camphill community. This paper will look at the effects of increasing diversity in the Camphill communities and also consider if there is anything that other communities may learn from the Camphill experience.

 

Prital, Yona, “Perspectives of Inclusion in the Kibbutz Movement Communities and Urban Intentional Communities in Israel”

 

Kibbutz communities from the beginning of their creation dealt with the question of inclusion. Their core values of Equality and Sharing shaped their community life practically and ideology and their attitude toward the diversity of their members needs and capacities. The phrase: "To give to each member according to its needs and to get according to his ability" was the base and campus for Kibbutz Communities life for many decades. The deep changes that the Kibbutz Movement has experienced during the last twenty years have raised the question how much and in what ways the Kibbutz Communities relate and practice Inclusion today.

Yad Tabenkin, the Research and Documentation Center of the Kibbutz Movement, took this topic as one of its major research projects. This project includes a group of researchers from different academic disciplines who inquire different perspectives of Inclusion in the Kibbutz and Urban Intentional Communities. Yad Tabenkin created a process of workshops and discussions amongst this group of researchers in order to choose the directions and aims of the project. This process raised many dilemmas and questions regarding the essence, extent and borders of the field of research.

Following these discussions, the research focused on various ways and models of inclusion: Inclusion of sub-groups within the community (Elderly members, Special Need members and children and Mutual Responsibility in the privatized Kibbutz), Inclusion of special groups from the outside environment as the main mission of the community ( Kibbutz Harduf), Inclusion in the educational system (Kibbutzim Regional Schools and models and concepts of inclusion in the Urban Intentional Communities).

 

Reynolds, Vincent, “Creating an Inclusive Community with the help of European Solidarity Corps Volunteers, at Camphill Community Glencraig, Northern Ireland”

 

Camphill Community Glencraig (Glencraig) was established in 1954 to provide a unique approach to supporting children, young people and adults with learning disabilities. Over the years Glencraig has developed a reputation for providing a special holistic approach which enables everyone to reach their full potential and live a content and meaningful life.

Since the turn of the twenty-first century, Glencraig has developed from a community run by vocational volunteers to an organisation managed by professionals in paid employment. There has also been an increase in the number of people in paid employment and a decrease in the number of vocational volunteers. This has come about because of the increased complexity of the people supported by Glencraig, the decrease in the number of volunteers applying and having to comply with a higher level of statutory regulations.

Glencraig is exploring other ways to attract volunteers and provide them with the support to enhance their volunteering experience. In November 2018 Glencraig started a Biodiversity Project with 3 Erasmus+ volunteers. The purpose of the project is to raise awareness of environmental issues and the importance of biodiversity. The volunteer will develop his/her knowledge of the importance of having a rich variety of plant and animal life in an area, to develop skills in creating healthy ecosystems and an awareness of the health benefits of these practices.

In February 2019 an application for a larger European Solidarity Corps (ESC) project was submitted.

The presentation will focus on the following topics:

·                    The success and challenges of the Biodiversity project

·                    Future collaborative work between Glencraig and the ESC

·                    How the above collaboration can enable Glencraig to retain and develop involvement with volunteers

 

Roth, Chris, “Exploring the Limits of Diversity and Inclusion in Contemporary Intentional Communities”

 

The editor of Communities shares stories of how various contemporary intentional communities deal with issues of diversity and inclusion. Articles submitted to the magazine, interviews with group members, and first-hand experience as a communitarian all reflect the complex nature of attempts to increase diversity and inclusion while preserving functionality and cohesion. Case studies include a radical experiment in which members of traditionally oppressed demographics (trans and people of color) have declared sovereignty and the right to share land and facilities with the previously-established (mostly cisgender/white) group occupying the site—and the discussions about privilege, unconscious bias, racism, consent, fairness, social justice, reparations, and the nature of community that have ensued. In other cases, members of both “majority” and “minority” groups look at the struggles they have in attracting other—or any—minority group members to their projects, and why that might be. And in relation to diversity in its broadest senses, a mixture of “success” and “horror” stories illustrate the benefits of a group stretching its boundaries, and the pitfalls of stretching them too far. How much diversity in temperament or values can a group tolerate without splitting apart? How much mainstream influence can a more countercultural group healthily absorb? Across the board, how much (and what types of) diversity and inclusion are possible within individual groups while still preserving the unity of purpose and interpersonal connection which help intentional communities thrive?

 

Sanders, Elizabeth, “Spiritual Formation and Diverse Fellowship: Initial Reflections on an Ongoing Study”

 

The paper I offer to the International Communal Studies Association conference is taken from a larger, ongoing study leading towards my dissertation in practical theology with the University of Aberdeen. The study will attempt to bring theological reflection to bear on Camphill communities and their striving to build intentional community inclusive of people with and without intellectual and developmental disabilities. The overarching question my study seeks to answer is twofold: what is the nature of the relationship between diverse fellowship and spiritual formation, and how might we better understand and practice community in light of such a relationship?

          In seeking to explore the nature of the relationship between diverse fellowship and spiritual formation, a series of questions emerge which point to how vague and amorphous this relationship may be: Is spiritual formation necessary to build or sustain diverse fellowship? Does diverse fellowship bring about spiritual formation? Are they two movements of the same process or two distinct means to achieving a shared end? Does the presence of one change the nature of the other? Does spiritual formation occur within the context of diverse fellowship, or does diverse fellowship occur within the context of spiritual formation?

          This presentation comes in the midst of fieldwork in several North American Camphill communities and will draw upon participant observation and in-depth interviews with community members. I will present background to the concepts of diverse fellowship and spiritual formation and an initial perspective on insights gathered through the first round of community fieldwork. The paper will thus be a glimpse into the middle of a process of exploration with Camphill community members and punctuated by questions which will open the way to more in-depth analysis and theological reflection.

 

Schaub, “The Limits of Diversity”

 

Almost all intentional communities hold diversity as a common value, yet few have thought through the fundamental challenge that inevitably arises in conjunction with that value: what are the limits of what the community can support? In his workshop Laird will unpack the dimensions of this challenge, why it is typically avoided until an answer is needed, why it is a big mistake to wait until you need an answer to discuss it, and why it is so hard to talk about (even when you know you should).

In broad terms, there are more underrepresented population segments than it is possible for any group to support and you have to make choices. Which kinds of diversity do you want to invest in? You cannot be all things to all people. And it is worse than that. You may reasonably want to reserve some support capacity for the potential of existing members needing help down the road (think aging in place). If you stretch to full capacity now, there may be little to nothing left for needs that arise later. What kind of cushion is sensible to protect?

Finally, how will you know when the limits have been reached? If the group’s position on this is the sum of all members’ views, you have to anticipate that members will sense that the limit is reached at different points.

This will vary based on how dear a particular kind of diversity is to that member; how connected they are to the individual who will either be supported or not (based on the outcome of the group consideration); the social capital of the members who are key stakeholders in the issue at hand; and where the group stands on the spectrum of risk tolerant versus risk averse. This is a complicated calculus, and often accompanied by strong feelings.

 

Schuchardt, Carrie—See Ortiz, Geraldine

 

Schuchardt, John—See Ortiz, Geraldine

 

Seckinger, Beverly, “Hippie Family Values”

 

Filmed over a ten year period at a remote communal ranch in New Mexico, “Hippie Family Values” is an intimate chronicle of a handful of hippie elders, along with their adult children and grandkids.

Sally was the ultimate back-to-the-land pioneer, building her own adobe house—while pregnant—in time to give birth there. Now her daughter Dulcie is returning to the ranch to raise her own children in this community. But will Dulcie and her husband Charris be able to resist the tug of the wider world? Kate came to the ranch to raise her children and work as a potter. When she can no longer sustain the commute to care for her ailing 90-year old mother, Kate brings her home to the ranch to spend her final months. Bjorn has lived at the ranch for nearly 40 years. Now over 80, he struggles with declining health and wonders whether the next generation will be able to sustain the community.

The film counters dismissive stereotypes with stories of people whose worldview was forged in the 60s counterculture, and who remain motivated by those youthful ideals in their 60s, 70s and 80s.

 

A beautiful piece of work…wonderful!

--Chris Roth, Editor, Communities magazine

 

A moving exploration of life at a 40 year old communal ranch in New Mexico, as the founders grapple with changes that come with growing older -- illness, disability, the death of parents, and their own mortality.

 --Deborah Altus, Chair, Department of Human Services, Washburn University and Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America

 

Captures the spirit of the 60s counterculture beautifully, featuring real people who have lived the hippie creed for decades.

--Tim Miller, author of The Hippies and American Values and The 60s Communes, and Professor of Religious Studies, Kansas University

 

Sanchez, Onat, “Hand Chimes and Singing”

 

One way to build community is by making melodies and harmonies. This workshop, rooted in the traditions of the Camphill movement, will explore group singing and the playing of hand chimes. Inclusive of people of all abilities.

 

Shahar, Eitan, and Orna Shemer, “Has the DNA of the Urban Kibbutz Passed on to its Social Initiatives? The Genetics of Inclusion”

 

"Partnership", "independence" and "community" - these were the first concepts raised by young adults with disabilities that are part of the communities established by GVANIM association. GVANIM was established by members of MIGVAN which is an urban-Kibbutz (a kind of intentional community in Israel). We started our PAR (participatory action research) with a group of young adults with disabilities from whom we wanted to learn what they would like to explore with us about their lives as young adults. The three concepts that mentioned above raised naturally and consensually by them, led us to design a group research with them and with few of their tutors. Together we wanted to understand the advantages in the social programs in which they participate. These programs are designed for young adults with physical, mental and cognitive disabilities. The programs express an innovative professional agenda whereby young adults live in communal apartments in the community, while learning how to prepare for independent living. At the end of the three-year programs, the young adults embark on independent life in the community, equipped with new skills and many personal and community experiences. The programs are based on values of community partnership and personal independence.

In continuation of the previous study, which attested to the connection between GVANIM association and the urban kibbutz, (Shemer, 2008) concerning the leading values and its cooperative practices, dialogues and egalitarianism, this time, we wanted to examine whether the spirit of the intentional community vision permeated not only the social programs of the GVANIM association, but also to the target audience – the service users.

In the lecture we will describe the PAR that was planned, carried out and analyzed together with twenty young adults and tutors from GVANIM association. We will address the findings of the study, with emphasis on aspects of inclusion and the experience of coping with the otherness of young adults with disabilities. We will discuss the transformations that occurred between the intentional community and their relations to their service users, in view of the metamorphosis in the intentional community on the one hand, and professional agendas in the field of disability on the other hand. The research shows the contribution of intentional communities as unique DNA carriers that make significant contribution to the professional and the societal worlds.

This study is part of the research project: "Intentional communities and inclusion" at the Yad Tabenkin Research Institute. A previous phase of the research was published as “‘Greenhouse’ at the back-yard: The urban-kibbutz ‘Migvan’ as a corner stone of ‘Gvanim’ association at Sderot,” in Y. Dror, (Ed), The Cooperative Groups in Israel (Yad Tabenkin, Ramet Efal), 272-239. In Hebrew.

 

Shnider, Avi, “The Role of the Location as a Main Infrastructure for the Cooperative: The Case of Moshav Zin”

 

The moshav is a unique manifestation of the cooperative idea. It was first established in Israel 100 year ago as a “hybrid” village combining collective and private values. In the moshav there was a private sphere: every family received a private farm but at the same time the purchasing, marketing and management of capital and credit was conducted in the collective sphere by the moshav cooperative.

At the end of the twentieth century the Israeli economy went through dramatic change. Upon this change, all the “moshavim,” like the big Israeli cooperatives, went through a privatization process and the agriculture that was a main part of the Israeli GDP mostly in the rural areas lost its priority to other branches of industry. The abandonment of agriculture and dissolution of the cooperative in the “moshavim” was expected to take out all the moshav practices and to turn the “moshavim” into regular villages based on farms. At first glance it seems that this is what happened to most of the “moshavim.”

This paper is based on a case study of “Moshav Zin,” established in the Arava, one of the most isolated areas in Israel, during the 1970s. Like most of the “moshavim,” it was privatized in the late 1980s. In contradiction to the other “moshavim,” in Zin agriculture remained the main source of income. Furthermore, even though the cooperative has dissolved in Zin, the moshav re-built a root grass practice to cooperate without corporation: they shared transit centers; they shared knowledge; and they were organized together to buy inputs.

I used the data I collected in “Moshav Zin” as an explanatory case study to build a theory that explains why “Moshav Zin” stayed with agriculture and rebuilt cooperative practice after privatization. I argue that every “moshav” or rural cooperative was based on three infrastructures:

1.                 Organizational – The “moshav” cooperative

2.                 Spital – the “moshav” location

3.                 Cultural – the “moshav” community strength and resilience

The privatization process not only dissolved the organizational infrastructure; sadly, in many cooperatives it dissolved the community resilience as well.

The reason that “Moshav Zin” has preserved the community resilience to rebuild cooperative practices is the location. Zin is in the Arava, one of the most isolated areas in Israel. The farms in the moshav had no other option than to cooperate.

The contribution of this study is the three-infrastructure model: In every rural cooperative the location, the community and the organizational structure play a role in the shaping of the day to day corporative practices. Usually we tend to give attention to the cooperative structure and the community. This case study is emphasizing the third component—the location. Location can sometimes be the main infrastructure of the cooperative.

 

Sullivan-Catlin, Heather, “‘Beyond What I Could Ever Imagine!’: College Students and Immersion Experiences at Ecovillages”

 

Leading students on field trips and immersion experiences is an exciting, effective, and potentially transformative way to teach about the contemporary intentional communities movement. This workshop draws on over a decade of experience taking college students to communities and ecovillages in the US and Europe. This participatory workshop will explore course content, assignments and activities, logistical issues, potential pitfalls/teachable moments, and lessons learned.

 

Schwartz, Marna,Regenerative Practices of Self Awareness and Compassion are Exponentially More Necessary Living in Community: Here’s How to do It”

 

In order to best communicate with others what our feelings and needs are, we must first cultivate awareness and self compassion for all the different layers of complexity within us. External community reflects the harmony of our internal community. What are some tools for connection that allow us to drop in more deeply to our truth and share it with others in a good way?

Yoga or meditation can be a good start for self awareness, but alone on a mat it’s easy to enjoy peace and harmony. Living in community is a crucible for bringing to the surface all one’s judgements, complaints, and unfinished business. Without a context for appreciating and moving thru this, the internal mess spreads to interpersonal woes.

Different communities metabolize or process charge, anger, and difficult conversations in different ways.

Can we learn from permaculture about composting apparent waste into a new source of vibrancy? Can we use dissonance as an opportunity to grow stronger and better both individually and collectively? What are some of the best practices for internal and external communication and co-evolution?

I look forward to unpacking these questions with you, and sharing some tools and techniques drawn from a synthesis of radical honesty, permaculture, yoga, and sociocracy (dynamaic governance).

 

Temesgen, Amsale Kassahun, “The Transformation of a Norwegian Ecovillage and its Impact on Quality of Life (QOL)”

 

Ecovillages aim to combine high quality of life with environmental sustainability. This paper focuses on the transformation/modernization of a Norwegian ecovillage (by engaging developers and architects) and the impact on QOL of its inhabitants. The following questions guide the research: 1) How is QOL affected by the transformation of the ecovillage? 2) How does life satisfaction in the ecovillage compare with the national average?

The research applies mixed methods. It commences with a needs-based workshop following Manfred Max-Neef (1991) (conducted in November 2018), followed up by a web-based survey among all ecovillage inhabitants (Spring 2019) to answer the research questions.

One of the reasons for the transformation of the ecovillage was to increase its appeal to the larger society by modernizing its housing units and its set up. However, the study shows the challenges this rapid transformation posed for the QOL of its inhabitants. Twelve workshop participants discussed how the transformation caused conflicts due to structural problems with the houses and smart technology and unclear contracts. This led to breakdown of trust towards the developers and between groups in the ecovillage. The transformation of the ecovillage has been hailed as a success through the lens of transition studies (Westskog et al., 2018) but this study shows its negative consequences for QOL. The web-survey will further explore this finding.

Workshop participants elaborated how the ideals they espoused were met with business considerations of the developers. The mismatch bred negative attitudes such as insecurity and fear. The lack of informal meeting places inhibited the possibility of developing conflict resolution institutions. They identified synergic satisfiers such as local employment opportunities to move towards their ideal ecovillage. This study can inform social experiments aiming to combine QOL with environmental sustainability and illuminates possible difficulties of combining business interests with social/environmental goals in sustainability transitions.

 

Thatcher, Brett, “Hope from Beyond ‘Us’: The Role of Thirdness in Healing Communities”

 

Inclusion in communities involves maintaining a tension between fitting and accommodation on the one hand and differentiation on the other. This both/and is exemplified in Jessica Benjamin’s (2004, 2018) recognition theory and understanding of the intersubjective third, a co-created relational space outside (or more than) the individual subjectivities of two interlocutors. Through the use of these concepts, this paper will explore the process by which healing communities facilitate recovery, particularly in terms of the activation of hope. An active and dynamic definition of hope will guide the exploration here: hope as movement toward a future, difficult, yet possible good (Aquinas). Through negotiation with others in the intersubjective third, this active hope becomes possible by way of one’s own subjectivity being recognized by the other and affirmed by oneself. The author will apply the third beyond the dyadic clinical relationship and explore its use and dimensions also between the individual and the community as a collective. Conditions in community that allow space for the overt recognition of the individual’s subjectivity enable those marginalized in the larger culture to identify and create new possibilities, particularly in terms of agency and desire. These significant implications for empowering individuals in their own recovery and for countering stigmatizing ideas and attitudes about mental health challenges will be discussed. The responsibility of the community to the intersubjective field will be explored in terms of authenticity and honesty while giving attention to the role of clinical boundaries. These ideas will be explored with examples from the model of community and care at Gould Farm, “a therapeutic community that promotes recovery for people with mental health and related challenges through meaningful work, community living, and clinical care.” Gould Farm’s emphasis on community as an essential element of its treatment model involves (most of) the staff electing to live on property as part of the intergenerational community made up of staff and their families, volunteers, and guests (Gould Farm’s name for clients); participating in shared meals, activities (driven by both staff and guest interest), and occupying multiple professional and personal roles in community. Staff and guests choose to come to the farm for their individual relationship to its mission, yet share a common responsibility as community members.

 

Tina, Cynthia, “Ecosystems of Collaboration: Stories to Inspire”

 

For the past five years, I have served as a global “netweaver.” My work has centered on observing, supporting, and connecting diverse networks within the intentional communities movement. This presentation is a synthesis of my core understanding of the patterns, tools, and principles that enable networks to thrive.

We will begin by exploring the inherent value of networks. What brings us together, really? What makes a network feel alive, vibrant, and attractive? Then we will look at the benefits and challenges community networks face globally. We will unpack the resistance communities have to joining formal networks.

I will share my experience as the Alliance Coordinator of a collaborative platform created by partners in the Global Ecovillage Network, Fellowship for Intentional Community, VillageLab, NuMundo, NextGENNA, and other community-focused organizations in North America.

In the Alliance, we focus on highly collaborative projects with the minimum level of overhead needed for effective operation. We have applied ecosystem patterns to design lean and adaptive organizational structures. Let’s learn how to apply similar principles and tools for thriving networks!

 

Tina, Cynthia, “Intergenerational Circle: Youth & Elder Connection”

 

Healthy intergenerational relationships are key to healthy communities. In my travels to well over one hundred intentional communities around the globe, youth and elder relationships are prominent.

Aging communities are challenged to attract young members. Youth want to feel empowered to take up leadership roles. Older community members struggle to let go of power. Young people want to travel and experiment with new businesses. They feel weighed-down by the commitments of community life. Olders seek stability and the continuation of their legacy.

By sharing three case studies, I will describe three common approaches for how communities can develop intergenerational relations.

We live in a rapidly changing world, where the cultural and technological differences between one generation and another is greater than ever before. Few of us have had the experience of growing up in communities of mixed ages. We lack skills for bridging the age divide.

We will practise these skills together. In workshop format, we will explore what it means to be an older and younger in today’s world. Let’s experiment with tools for cultivating meaningful conversations.

The Intergenerational Circle is a method developed in partnership with NextGEN - the youth chapter of the Global Ecovillage Network.

 

Topel, Menamchem—See Ariel, Havatzelet

 

Uwambajimana, Viateur—See Dusingizimana, Zacharie

 

Wali, Maihan—See Gallo, Marcella

 

Wall, Benjamin S., “Mission is not Everything: The Fragility of L’Arche and the Limits of Welcome”

 

This paper will identify and emphasize the significance of the fragility of L’Arche represented in its foundational failure of L’Arche to sustainably include all members: of the three men with disabilities that Jean Vanier invited to live with him in Trosly in 1964, one (Dany) was so troubled that Vanier had to send him back to the institution. I will draw attention to the ways in which this fragile reality at the heart of L’Arche is a sign of the essence of community, which by definition cannot include everyone. Limitation is built into the reality of human relationship, especially the intimate kind of community that L’Arche strives to be. However, Dany’s expulsion at the inception of L’Arche was not necessarily an all-out failure within the history of L’Arche but rather an opportunity and sign of the limits and inherent vulnerability of a community’s ability to welcome. It was a prophetic moment in the life of L’Arche that resulted in self and community conscientious of its own limitations and fragility. Such discovery gave rise to a deeper sense of L’Arche’s need to have a mission beyond simply living together which has reciprocally influenced where the boundaries and limits of welcome have been and are drawn. The underlying contention of this paper is that sometimes exclusion is necessary but abandonment is never an option. In light of this contention the following questions about the nature of boundaries and limits of intentional community come to the fore. If L’Arche’s foundational failure of rejecting Dany teaches us that all communities are intrinsically limited, what does this entail about the boundaries of Camphill and L’Arche today? If Camphill and L’Arche do indeed have intrinsic limits, what are they? What kind of boundaries ought to be drawn for the preservation of the community in its limits? How might the necessary boundaries and limits of our welcoming force us to acknowledge our need for collaboration with other communities who may be better equipped to fill the void/lacking in our communities? 

 

Winchester, Joan—See Cataldo, Lisa

 

Zuman, Helen, “The Dark Side of Utopia: A View from Zendik Farm”

 

In the world of communal groups, where’s the line dividing cult from community? Does such a line exist? What do we make of the tangle of joy, growth, and coercion at the heart of so many collective experiments?

 In Mating in Captivity, her memoir of five years (1999-2004) with the Zendiks—a band of self-styled revolutionaries rooted in the 1960s counterculture—Helen Zuman dives deep into the dark side of a utopian project gone terribly wrong, while guiding readers on an intimate journey through her quest for meaning and belonging, her metamorphosis from skeptic to true believer, and her eventual departure and recovery. In this talk, Helen will draw on her Zendik story to explore the often blurry edge between sacrificing self-trust and joining together for a common cause.


 

 

 

Abstracts

 

Altus, Deborah

 

Deborah Altus is professor and coordinator of the Gerontology minor at Washburn University, Topeka, KS, USA. Her interests in intentional communities include 1960s/70s communes, Walden Two communities, and aging in community. She is a former president of the USA-based Communal Studies Association and current board member of the ICSA.

 

Ambrose, Hunter

 

Hunter Ambrose is a housing partner and formerly homeless mother with three children. She grew up in the foster care system and joined Angelica Village to find a community that could support her and to give support to others who have experienced difficult times. Since being at Angelica Village she has completed her GED and cosmetology school and is employed. She is head of household to her own children and supports the community as a board member and with communications, program development and events planning. Her life experience and wisdom guides Angelica Village through her service on the Board Committee that plans community gatherings and celebrations.

 

Azati, Aharon

 

I am a member of Kibbutz Beit Haemek since 1971. I was awarded my PhD by Tel Aviv University (2006). I have been a research fellow at Yad Tabenkin the Research and Documentation Center of the Kibbutz Movement since 1988, and director of the Center’s archives since 1992. I had been a lecturer at Beit Berl Academic College 1999-2016 and since 2018 at Sapir College, Chair of the Association of Kibbutz and Moshav Archivists since 2008, a member of ICSA since 2007. My book is Between Voluntary Society and the Establishment of the State of Israel: The Kibbutz Movements vis-à-vis the IDF, 1948-1957 (Heb.), Ramat Efal, 2015.

 

Bang, Jan

 

I grew up in England and have lived for 25 years in Kibbutz and Camphill communities in Israel and Norway. I have worked with the Global Ecovillage Network since the conference at Findhorn in 1995. I have been active in the Norwegian Permaculture and Ecovillage movements since 2001. I have been connected to the International Communal Studies Association since its founding conference in 1985, and in 2010 was elected Chair of the Association. I was part of the organising team for the 2013 ICSA conference on Community and Sustainability, held at Findhorn. I have written seven books about community and environment. 

 

Ben-Eliezer, Ephraim

 

Ephraim Ben-Eliezer is a lifetime member of the Platte Clove Bruderhof Community. He is 45 years old and works as a software developer for the Bruderhof’s businesses. He also works in the manufacture of Rifton Equipment– Adaptive Equipment for the Disabled. He is the son of Holocaust survivor, Josef Ben-Eliezer.

 

Blomaard, Pim

 

Dr. Pim Blomaard was for many years the executive director of an anthroposophical institution with 1400 co-workers in different small and bigger living communities and daycenters for people with ID or dementia. Since 2017, he is head of the Bernard Lievegoed Research Center at the Free University in the Netherlands (Amsterdam), faculty of Religion and Theology. His research is about Care Ethics and Relational Care in long-term care homes and about methodical development of anthroposophical care.

 

Blue, Sky

 

Sky Blue is the Executive Director of the Fellowship for Intentional Community. Over the last 20 years he has lived in, worked with, and consulted for numerous communal and cooperative groups and organizations, and has visited dozens of communities and cooperatives, in the US and in Europe.

 

Brennan-Krohn, Zoe

 

Zoe Brennan-Krohn lived in Camphill Community Ballytobin in Ireland from 2003 until 2005. In 2009, Zoe wrote an honors thesis about the history of the Camphill movement, "In the Nearness of Our Striving: Camphill Communities Re-Imagining Disability and Society." Zoe graduated from Harvard Law School in 2015. She is currently a staff attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union Disability Rights Program. Zoe lives in San Francisco.

 

Brookes, Jody

 

Born in Canterbury, England, Jody is Camphill Hudson’s program director. Graduated with a BA in Performance Art at Brighton University and an MA in Community Theater at Goldsmith University. She has written and devised innumerable original theater pieces and is enamored with multi-media productions, comedy and the human spirit in her work.

 

Brown, Susan Love

 

Susan Love Brown is a Professor of Anthropology at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida, USA. She is the editor of Intentional Community: An Anthropological Perspective (Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 2002). She has done fieldwork at the Ananda Village community in northern California.

 

Butcher, A. Allen

 

A. Allen Butcher: author The Intentioneers' Bible (2016), CultureMagic.org (2007); member East Wind (1975), Twin Oaks (1985); founder Dry Gulch Ecovillage (2014); held positions: Federation of Egalitarian Communities (1976), School of Living Community Land Trust (1985), Fellowship for Intentional Community (1986), Cohousing Association U.S.A. (1997); graduated University Southern Indiana (1992).

 

Carter, Erik William

 

Dr. Erik Carter is Cornelius Vanderbilt Professor of Special Education at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. His research and teaching focuses on evidence-based strategies for supporting inclusion and valued roles in school, work, community, and congregational settings for children and adults with intellectual disability and autism. He has published widely in the areas of educational and transition services, including more than 200 articles, chapters, and books.

 

Cataldo, Lisa M.

 

Lisa M. Cataldo, M.Div., Ph.D., a former resident of L’Arche Daybreak, and Vice-President of the Board of the L’Arche Long Island community, was a member of the L’Arche USA spirituality project team. She is Asst. Professor of Pastoral Care and Counseling at Fordham University, and a psychoanalyst in private practice in New York City.

 

Coates, Chris

 

Chris is a member of Forgebank Cohousing in Lancaster and a former member of People in Common an alternative living working co-operative formed in the 1970s. He has been part of the editorial collective of Diggers and Dreamers for the past 30 years producing a directory and journal of communal living in the UK. He is author of two books on the history of Intentional Communities in the UK, Utopia Britannica and Communes Britannica. Chris is an ICSA board member and served as ICSA Chair from 2013 – 2016.

 

Cole, Joe

 

Joe Cole is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Joe has a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Duke University, and is a Facilitator and Consultant for communities and non-profit organizations.

 

Cushing, Pamela

 

Professor Pamela Cushing, PhD is the Founder and Chair of the Disability Studies department at King's campus of Western University in London, Canada. She is continually amazed at the curiosity and hunger the undergraduate students have to learn more about new ways to imagine disability. This has underpinned the program growing from 0 to 200+ degree registrants in the last 7 years. She has recently hired two more full time professors and more than a dozen sessional Instructors. This year, Professor Cushing founded the inaugural Jean Vanier Research Centre to analharrisyze and explore the impact of his ideas and their manifestation in the life-sharing communities of L'Arche internationally. As Director, she ran the first ever international symposium for research that uses his ideas and is also working with the university library to catalogue and house his archives. She is a Cultural Anthropologist specializing in disability, cultural change, organanizational culture, ethics of caregiving, and experiential education and why people undertake social good. 

 

Davis-Brown, Karen

 

Karen Davis-Brown – Karen has worked with vulnerable populations for many years, including as a coworker in Camphill communities, and currently serves as the Designated Coordinator for Camphill Village Minnesota. She holds an M.S. degree in Human Development specializing in adult development.

 

Derkey, Sarah

 

Sarah Derkey is an accomplished weaver and artist and has lived at CVM for over twenty years.

 

Dusingizimana, Zacharie

 

I am the co-founder and the Legal Representative of Ubumwe Community Center (UCC). Working with vulnerable people since 2000, in 2005 I founded the “UCC” especially for persons with disabilities. I have a bachelor’s degree in general management and an MBA with a specialization in project management.

 

Duvall, Lorraine

 

Lorraine Duvall holds a BS degree in Mathematics, an MS in Operations Research, and a PhD from Syracuse University in Information Studies. She spent her professional career as a software engineer and a director of research. After moving to the Adirondacks in 1999, Duvall wrote two award winning books: And I Know Too Much to Pretend and In Praise of Quiet Waters: Finding Solitude and Adventure in the Wild Adirondacks. She is currently researching the history of A Woman’s Place, a women-only commune that existed from 1974-1980, not far from her mountain home.

 

East, Jean

 

Dr. East is a professor emerita from the University of Denver Graduate School of Social Work who retired in June 2018 after 28 years. Her research has been focused on empowerment practice, poverty and women, and leadership. Dr. East founded a non-profit that used an empowerment model for work with women who were financially vulnerable. Dr. East is the chair of the Board of Angelica Village and a committed community partner in the work.

 

Farmer, Crystal

 

Crystal Farmer is an organizer of Charlotte Cohousing, owner of Big Sister Team Building, a teacher at Gastonia Freedom School (an Agile Learning Center), and the organizer of New Culture Charlotte. She is a leading advocate for greater diversity in the cohousing movement in the United States.

 

Fernandez, Kathleen M.

 

Kathleen M. Fernandez, a graduate of Otterbein College is the former site manager at Zoar Village and Fort Laurens State Memorials for the Ohio Historical Society (now the Ohio History Connection), retiring in 2004. She worked as the Executive Director of the North Canton Heritage Society from 2006-2016. She has been the Executive Director of the Communal Studies Association since 2004. She is the author of A Singular People: Images of Zoar (Kent State University Press, 2003), and has written numerous papers and articles about the Zoar Separatists for journals and conferences. She is currently at work on a general history of Zoar to be titled Zoar: The Story of an Intentional Community, (Kent State University Press, slated for mid-2019 publication).

 

Ferrara, Mark S.

 

Mark S. Ferrara is the author of several books including Palace of Ashes (2015), Sacred Bliss (2016), and New Seeds of Profit (2019). An associate professor of English at State University of New York, Ferrara has taught for universities in South Korea, China, and on a Fulbright scholarship in Turkey. His work has been reviewed in Washington Post, China Daily, and Inside Higher Education. 

 

Ferrell, Amy

 

Amy Ferrell (formerly Boelé) is an assistant professor of special education in the School of Education and Human Development at the University of Colorado Denver, where she studies community, discourse, and literacy for people with disabilities. Her work, which situates disability research in social, cultural, historical, racial, linguistic, and political contexts, has appeared in journals such as Harvard Educational Review, Reading Research Quarterly, Linguistics and Education, and International Journal of Inclusive Education. She is coauthor of the second edition of The Ethics of Special Education (Teachers College Press).

 

Freeman, Erik

 

Erik J. Freeman is an instructor of history at Choate Rosemary Hall, in Wallingford, Connecticut, where he teaches courses on modern European history, American history, environmental policy, and the American West. He is currently pursuing a PhD in history at the University of Connecticut. Erik’s recent article in the Journal of Mormon History, “’True Christianity’: The Flowering and Fading of Mormonism and Romantic Socialism in Nineteenth-Century France,” won the Best Article Award at the Communal Studies Association’s annual conference in 2018.

 

Furze, Melitta

 

Melitta Furze was born after World War II in Stuttgart, Germany. She attended the Waldorf School there. In 1974 she joined the “Summer Congress” in Achberg, Germany, met Joseph Beuys, and heard about his ideas. From 1980 through 2016 she lived and worked at Camphill Special School (Beaver Run, Pennsylvania), and Camphill Ontario, which she cofounded. Thereafter, she lived at Camphill Föhrenbühl, near the lake of Constance in Germany.

 

Ganany-Dagan, Orly

 

Dr. Orly Ganany received her undergraduate and master’s degrees in Education and Sociology from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and completed her Ph.D. at Tel Aviv University. Her thesis research focused on New Cooperative Communities in Israel’s social periphery. She holds a teaching certificate in Sociology from Oranim College.

 

Her research focuses on Gender, Organization and Community and the social and geographic Periphery. Her publications in these areas integrate quantitative and qualitative research methods and survey theoretical frameworks and their practical applications to local communities.

 

In her position as a sociologist in the settlement department of the World Zionist Organization, as well as her work as a researcher at the Shamir Research Institute and the Yad Tabenkin Institute for the Study of Kibbutz, she has focused on rural and urban communities and studied the demographic evolution of peripheral kibbutzim and moshavim. In Tel-Hai College, Dr. Ganany teaches courses on Communities, Education and Social Entrepreneurship.

 

Dr. Ganany is a member of the Israeli Sociology Society and the Kibbutz Researchers Forum at Yad Tabenkin. She serves on the board of directors of a private company and as a member of the World Zionist Organization committee on rural settlement.

 

Gill, Michael

 

Michael Gill is an associate professor of Disability Studies in the School of Education at Syracuse University. He is the author of Already Doing It: Intellectual Disability and Sexual Agency (University of Minnesota Press, 2015). He is also the co-editor, with Cathy Schlund-Vials, of Disability, Human Rights, and the Limits of Humanitarianism (Ashgate, 2014).

 

Greenberg, Daniel

 

In 1999, Dr. Greenberg founded Living Routes, which partnered with UMass Amherst to run study abroad programs based in ecovillages; In 2012 he started Earth Deeds, a personalized carbon pricing mechanism; and more recently, CAPE, which develops custom academic programs in ecovillages. He has also served as President of the Global Ecovillage Network.

 

Gruber, Jorge

 

Jorge Gruber was born in Caracas, Venezuela and raised in Miami, FL. Jorge earned his BA in International Studies from Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY. He currently serves as Program Assistant for EPIC (Engaging People In Change), a leadership program for immigrant youth, and with Grace Immigrant Outreach.

 

Harper, Colin

 

Dr Colin M Harper is Chief Executive of Camphill Communities Trust (Northern Ireland) and an Honorary Lecturer in Social Policy, Queen’s University Belfast. He was manager of the Centre on Human Rights for People with Disabilities and has conducted research, policy and lobbying work on implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities at domestic and international levels.

 

Harrington, Matthew

 

Matthew Harrington first joined Triform community in 2011. He participated in many self-advocacy groups and has given grand speeches at numerous large functions in New York City. Matthew’s senior project in Triform was a spectacular performance as Jean Val Jean in Les Miserables. Matthew is now a member of Camphill Hudson and lives a very full independent life in the city of Hudson.

 

Harris, Joe

 

Joe Harris is currently living and working at the Camphill School in Pennsylvania with his wife and three young children. Joe has been a class teacher at the school for 10 years, and is a graduate of the Camphill Academy. Joe holds a master’s degree in educational leadership from Immaculata University, and a bachelor’s degree in History and American studies from the University of Sunderland in England. He has lived on campus at the Camphill School for a total of 16 years and is passionate about living in an intentional community. Joe has also been involved in the national work of the Camphill Movement in North America for almost 10 years, and is the current president of the Camphill Association of North America. 

 

Hart, Amy

 

Amy Hart received her PhD in U.S. history from UC Santa Cruz in June 2019. Her dissertation examines the experiences of women who joined Fourierist communities during the antebellum period in the United States. She has published on a variety of topics including utopian communities, social reform in the United States, and the history of religion. 

 

Heberton, Renata

 

Renata Heberton graduated of the University of Denver Graduate School of Social Work in 2012 and developed a program proposal for Angelica Village through her course work. Renata’s first experience with a healing intentional community was with the House of Peace outside of Boston, MA. Renata spent the summer of 2005 learning about the profound therapeutic and healing possibilities that can come from an intentional and welcoming community. Her experience with the House of Peace helped form the basis of her passion and commitment to creating a community in her hometown of Denver. Renata is the director of Angelica Village.

 

HERMANN, Natascha

 

Natascha is a lecturer at an Austrian university of applied sciences and working in a school of children in need of special care whilst completing her training as a Waldorf Teacher. She has international experience in health promotion and is supporting the establishment of an anthroposophical teacher training in Rwanda.

 

Hill, Joan

 

Joan Hill is from upstate NY and moved to v in 2012: She has many interests including working with animals, Japanese culture, animation, etc. Her interest in Japan took her there a few years ago as part of a trip organized by the Village. She lives in Rock maple house and works in the Coop and on the farm

 

Hill, Leigh

 

Leigh is an educator, connected for a number of years with the Waldorf Schools, currently at the Shining Mountain Waldorf School as their high school coordinator. Leigh’s main focus is to support the service learning of the students as we as the programmatic, cultural and administrative pieces of the high school. Leigh works closely with the teachers, students and parents in Restorative Justice practices and is a trained facilitator in the field. She is a board member at Angelica Village.

 

Hixon, Linda

 

An adjunct instructor at Worcester State University in Massachusetts, Linda Hixon is coordinator and lead historian of the Hopedale Women’s Research Project, a community project viewing this important communal and industrial town through the eyes of its female inhabitants. A book on the group’s findings will be published in 2020.

 

Hobley, Anya

 

Anya Hobley is currently the Executive Co-Director and a member of a 4-person leadership team for CCC, as well as being the Director of Development and Community Outreach. She is a member of CCC’s Board of Directors, and a member of the Santa Cruz Waldorf School Board. Anya has spent over a decade of her life in Camphill Communities, first as a young child, then as a young adult, and more recently for nine years in Camphill Communities California (CCC). Anya is also one of two international delegates from North America to the Anthroposophic Council for Inclusive Social Development in Dornach, Switzerland. Anya is passionate about the health and wellbeing of all human beings, and dedicated to supporting individuals to unfold their true potential in order to contribute to their communities and the world.

 

Hoy, Michael

 

Michael Hoy is a social therapist and artist living in Hudson, New York. Originally from Chicago, he has degrees in Psychology (B.Sc. DePaul University) and Waldorf Education (Ms.Ed. Sunbridge College). He has been a part of Camphill Communities for 13 years (N.Ireland and Columbia Co. New York, USA), performing in many plays and other dramatic forms, as well as directing, both in Camphill and locally.

 

Hussaini, Ali

 

Ali came to Angelica Village in the past 2 years as an unaccompanied minor refugee. He was born in Afghanistan and then lived in a refugee camp in Indonesia. Ali attends high school, loves wrestling and is interested in working with others around the world. He brings a great spirit to our home.

 

Johnson, Martin

 

Martin Johnson MA (Cantab) 82 years old is a committed Bruderhof member. He and his wife of 41 years, visited Israel 9 time since 1987, staying 7 months on Kibbutz Yad Mordechai and visiting some 50 kibbutzim and are still in contact with 35 kibbutzim. See “Distant Brothers” by Yaacov Oved.

 

Kent, Elijah

 

Elijah Kent is originally from Massachusetts and joined Triform when he was 16. In 2009 he moved to Camphill Village. Elijah is an avid skier and loves to ride his bicycle. He has worked in many areas in the Village and currently lives in Lirio.

 

Khlopina, Nastia

 

Nastia Khlopina, a Russian native, earned her BA in International Business from Dickinson College, PA. While her faith is built upon practices from a variety of Christian denominations, she currently serves at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, Lithgow, as an Associate for Christian Education.

 

Kiesel, Yannick

 

My name is Yannick Kiesel, I am 25 years old and I am a recent master’s graduate in human geography at the University of Amsterdam. I am German but currently living in Calgary, Canada. During the last 5 years, I was travelling a lot and living in different cities of the world experiencing different kinds of communities. I was always fascinated by the varieties and differences in the living environment of inhabitants all over the world and therefore wanted to find a special community to examine in my master thesis paper.

 

Kowalenko, Christine

 

Christine has lived at Camphill Village Minnesota for almost thirty years and is a tremendous advocate for herself and her community.

 

Lavi, Aharon Ariel

 

Aharon Ariel Lavi is a serial social entrepreneur and a professional community organizer, who integrates social activism with cutting-edge research. He is co-founder of MAKOM (Israel's national Intentional Communities umbrella) and director of Hakhel, the Jewish intentional communities incubator in the Diaspora. Lavi holds BA in Geography and Economics, MA in History and Philosophy of Science, and currently working on his dissertation at BGU, on Israel-Diaspora relations.

 

Lloyd-Moffett, Stephen R.

 

Stephen Lloyd-Moffett is a Professor of Religious Studies at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. His original research was on the rise of monasticism in early Christianity and Hinduism, though he has broad research interests. He is also co-founder of the Lavra, an intentional community on the Central Coast of California.

 

Ludwig, Yana

 

Yana Ludwig is a cooperative culture and intentional communities advocate, and an anti-oppression activist. She serves on the Foundation for Intentional Community board, and is a trainer and consultant for communities, worker owned cooperative and nonprofits. Her book, Together Resilient: Building Community in the Age of Climate Disruption, was the Communal Studies Association 2017 Book of the Year. She's a host on the Solidarity House podcast, co-founder of Solidarity Collective (an income sharing community in Wyoming) and a candidate for US Senate in 2020.

 

Marks, Anton

 

Anton Marks is the general secretary of the Intentional Communities Desk (formerly the International Communes Desk), and editor of its Hebrew and English publications KOL and C.A.L.L. respectively. Anton is a founder member of the largest urban kibbutz in the world, Kibbutz Mishol, situated in Nazareth Illit in the north of Israel, a full-income sharing community of 150 people all living under one roof. Anton is also an ICSA board member.

 

Mattos, Taisa

 

Taisa Mattos is an Ecovillage Researcher at Federal University of Rio de Janeiro. Cofounder of Terra Una Ecovillage in Brazil. Global Ecovillage Network (GEN) Trainer and Ambassador. Gaia Education Trainer. Professor at the Post Graduate Program on Pedagogy of Cooperation and Social Methodologies. She is an ICSA board member.

 

Metcalf, Bill

 

Dr Bill Metcalf has been an ICSA member over 30 years, President 1998-2001, and organised the ICSA2001 conference at ZEGG, Germany. He is the 2018 recipient of the CSA’s Distinguished Scholar Award, the author of many books, book chapters and scholarly articles, and is International Correspondent for Communities magazine.

 

Miereczko, Birte

 

Birte Miereczko lives in Camphill Le Béal in the south of France. She came to the Camphill Schools in Aberdeen, Scotland in 2001 after having spent a year as a young co-worker in Le Béal. Birte finished the BA in Curative Education in 2005. In 2009 the Miereczko family moved to Le Béal where Birte is part of the management team. In 2013 she obtained a degree in French Social Work Management. The day-to-day challenge in her work is to how to apply the Camphill values in the everchanging landscape of social work in France.

 

Miller, Timothy

 

Timothy Miller is a Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Kansas, USA. He is the author of several books on American intentional communities, including The Encyclopedic Guide to American Intentional Communities and Communes in America, 1975-2000, and is a past president of the ICSA.

 

Murphy, Thomas N.

 

Thomas N. Murphy is a PhD student at the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry. His scholarly interests lie at the intersection of disabilities studies, theology, and religious education. His research is driven by gratitude to his friends from L’Arche, with whom he had the privilege to live and work alongside for many years in the L’Arche Boston North community.

 

Mychajluk, Lisa

 

Lisa Mychajluk is a PhD Candidate in Adult Education and Community Development, at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto (Canada). For 10 years, Lisa has been investigating ecovillage learning experiences, both academically and personally, to understand their potential to support transitions to “one planet living”.

 

Odin, Chrystal

 

Chrystal A. Odin is a visual artist, performance artist, and musician from Minnesota who currently resides at Camphill Village Minnesota (CVM). Her work often encompasses deeply personal themes. She believes in the healing abilities inherent in art, as an inclusive opportunity to explore the self and connect with others.

 

Ortiz, Geraldine

 

Geraldine Ortiz lived in Camphill Village, Copake, New York for 24 years where she developed her gifts and became recognized as a gourmet cook, a leader among her peers, and a uniquely expressive artist. She joined the House of Peace in 1994, wanting to commit herself to life in community with refugees. Geraldine’s genius of hospitality underlies the work of welcome, care and healing at the House of Peace and extends to her church and local community where she is a respected member.

 

Paulino da Silva, Gleice

 

I have worked with Curative Education for the past 8 years. I did a year as a volunteer in Sheiling School Ringwood in England and have spent the past 7 years in Camphill School - Beaver Run. I have a BA in Biology from Universidade Federal de Pernambuco - Brazil, a diploma in Curative Education from Camphill Academy and a master in Healing Education from Antioch University of New England. Currently, I am a class teacher at Camphill School - Beaver Run.

 

Plant, Andrew

 

Andrew Plant has lived and worked in Camphill communities for 37 years in Northern Ireland and Scotland. He has been active in life-sharing, farming, training and management. He is especially interested in researching and writing about the Camphill communities in relation to the wider movement of intentional communities.

 

Prital, Yona

 

Yona Prital is a graduate of the Mandel School of Leadership and has an M.A. in Education from Hebrew University. She is the director of Yad Tabenkin, the Research and Documentation Center of the Kibbutz Movement.

 

Ravitz, Cheney

 

My name is Cheney B. Ravitz. I was born in Takoma Park MD on December 24, 1990. I was diagnosed with ether HFA and/or PDD-NOS. I also have controlled OCD and anxiety. My challenges are spelling, anxiety, social issues and some OCD. I went to a high school for people who would be misfits in normal schools. I heard about Triform Camphill Community from my cousin who was a short-term coworker in Camphill Copake. I have lived in Triform for 8 years.

 

Reynolds, Vincent

 

Vincent Reynolds has been a coworker at the Camphill Community Glencraig in Northern Ireland since 1983.  He has a wide range of experience in supporting adults and children with special needs. He has been involved in management, staff training and support for staff and co-workers at Glencraig.

 

Robb, Ian

 

Ian Robb is from Scotland and joined Camphill in Aberdeen, Scotland as a young man. He then did the BD training and came to the US as a biodynamic farmer/gardener and did this for a number of years in till he joined Camphill Village. He ran the farm till 2011 when he decided to work for Turtle Tree Seeds as an employee.

 

Roth, Chris

 

Chris Roth has been editor of Communities: Life in Cooperative Culture, FIC’s quarterly magazine, since 2008, recently edited the Wisdom of Communities four-volume set, and has resided in several different intentional communities—currently Lost Valley Educational Center/Meadowsong Ecovillage.eas

 

Sanchez-Schwartz, Onat

 

Onat holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and an M.A. in Counselling Psychology/Marriage and Family Therapy. He is the executive director of Camphill Ghent, a community for elders which is part of the worldwide Camphill organization. Onat has many years of experience in the field of human resource management, administration, and licensing and compliance management. Onat is also involved in leading music, teaching hand chimes/bells and leading choirs.

 

Sanders, Elizabeth

 

Elizabeth Sanders has been a part of the Camphill movement in North America since 2011. She currently serves as the Research Fellow and a Program Director for the Camphill Academy, is member of the Camphill School in southeastern Pennsylvania, and coordinates policy research for the Camphill Association of North America. In addition to her work in the Camphill movement, Elizabeth is also pursuing a graduate degree with the University of Aberdeen, and her research interests include Camphill and other intentional communities, spiritual formation, ethics of care and care work, disability policy, interreligious theology, and adult education.

 

Schaub, Laird

 

Laird has lived in intentional for more than 40 years, and served as the main administrator for the Fellowship for Intentional Community for 28 years (1987-2015). In addition, he has been a consultant about cooperative group dynamics since 1987—in which capacity he has worked with more than 100 groups.

 

Schuchardt, Carrie

 

Carrie Schuchardt, M.Ed., sibling of a developmentally challenged sister, lived and worked in Camphill Village, Kimberton Hills, PA from 1975-1990. During that time she became a foster mother to young refugees from Viet Nam. Experiencing the powerful impact of adults in need of special care finding ways to give special care to those uprooted by war led her to establish the House of Peace, together with her husband John, her three children, her extended Vietnamese family members, and special friends with some impairments. Carrie is actively engaged in speaking, writing, and witnessing on behalf of the rights of refugees and victims of war.

 

Schuchardt, John

 

John Schuchardt, J.D., is an attorney and former Marine Corps officer who renounced militarism and all forms of violence, becoming a well-known figure in the national and international movement to abolish nuclear weapons. In 1990 he co-founded the House of Peace community, combining his life work towards the abolition of war with the daily community tasks of serving victims of war in companionship with adults with impairments. John’s efforts include a wide range of human rights issues.

 

Schwartz, Marna

 

Marna Schwartz is a Regenerative Community & Intimacy Coach. She was certified by the Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health and Teachers College at Columbia University. Marna has presented at the Yoga Journal Conference and the North American Permaculture Convergence, and has supported hundreds of clients.

 

Seckinger, Beverly

 

Beverly Seckinger is a Tucson-based filmmaker, professor and musician, whose band the Wayback Machine has been playing for the hippies of southern Arizona and New Mexico for nearly 20 years. Her film Laramie Inside Out, about the aftermath of Matthew Shepard’s 1998 murder, had its US broadcast premiere on PBS in June 2007.

https://tftv.arizona.edu/people/directory/bsecking/

 

Shahar, Eitan

 

Dr. Eitan Shahar: Deputy Director at the Department of social services in Ofakim and lecturer in the Department of Social Work at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. Member of the board of directors of Gvanim Association. Areas of expertise include: International social work, community social work, social work in rural communities and with ethnic and migrant groups, qualitative research methods, trauma and resilience in community work.

 

Shemer, Orna

 

Dr. Orna Shemer: Member of the research-board of Yad-Tabenkin & a faculty member at the School of Social Work at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. A community social worker and member in the Board of Directors of Gvanim Association. Researcher in the fields of participatory practices, intentional communities, community work and cultural competence.

 

Shnider, Avi

 

Avi Shnider is the Vice Dean of the School of Behavioral Science and the Chair of the M.A program for Organization Consulting both in the College of Management Israel. His main fields of research are the rural cooperative in Israel and the future of work.

 

Shulman, Rachel

 

Rachel Shulman is a longtime Camphiller, having first joined Triform in the year 2000. After graduating 8 years later with a home economics apprenticeship she moved to the College of St. Rose in Albany. After graduating there Rachel returned to Columbia County to join Camphill Hudson in 2012. Rachel is a pioneer and was the first person to get her own apartment with a housemate and lives a very independent and social life in the city of Hudson. Rachel has also given a number of presentations at the national Down Syndrome Conferences in St. Antonia, Texas. Dublin, Ireland and Washington DC.

 

Smith, Luther

 

Luther E. Smith, Jr., Ph.D. is Professor Emeritus of Church and Community, Candler School of Theology of Emory University (Atlanta, Georgia), where he served on the faculty for thirty-five years. He writes and speaks extensively on issues of church and society, meanings and dynamics of community, interfaith cooperation, Christian spirituality, and the thought of Howard Thurman. He is the author of Howard Thurman: The Mystic as Prophet and Intimacy and Mission: Intentional Community as Crucible for Radical Discipleship. Luther serves on national board of L’Arche USA.

 

Sorrels, Katherine

 

Katherine Sorrels is an Associate Professor of History at the University of Cincinnati.

Her first book, Cosmopolitan Outsiders, was on Jewish ideas of Europe in the early

20th century. Her current research ties the history of Camphill into several broad

themes in modern European history. She grew up in Camphill Copake.

 

Steel, Richard

 

Richard Steel was born 1952 in Oxford, England. After studying linguistics he achieved the diploma for Curative Education at the Camphill Seminar, Lake Constance, Germany and lived there in the children’s village Camphill Föhrenbühl with his family in a house community with children and youngsters in need of special care until 2008, spending one year in Camphill Village, Copake, NY. Amongst other activities he taught in the high school and training workshops, lecturing at the Camphill Seminar and producing many of Karl König's plays for the festivals. Since August 2008 he is co-responsible for the Literary Estate of Karl König and founded the Karl König Institute for Art, Science and Social Life, of which he is no w the managing director. He writes, lectures and gives seminars to a wide range of themes springing from his own experience and Karl König's works. He has also published volumes of his own poetry. For some years he has been assisting with development of a Camphill initiative for care of the elderly, Camphill Ghent, NY, USA. But his main office is in Berlin, Germany. He is responsible for the New Edition of Karl König's works, being published successively in German and English. In 2016 he was co-founder of the Kaspar Hauser Research Circle, working with the world’s biggest private collection of research documents and historic material about Kaspar Hauser.

 

Sullivan-Catlin, Heather

 

Heather Sullivan-Catlin is a sociology and environmental studies professor at the State University of New York – Potsdam with primary interest in family, community, and sustainability. She recently completed Gaia Education’s Design for Sustainability program and strives to serve as an ambassador between academia and the global ecovillage movement.

 

Temesgen, Amsale Kassahun

 

Amsale Temesgen is a PhD fellow at Nord University (Norway) and specializes in

Ecological Economics. Her PhD focuses on the intersection between wellbeing and

sustainability. Amsale has MSc in Development Economics and has over ten years’ research experience focusing on living conditions in Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

 

Thatcher, Brett

 

Brett Thatcher, LCSW, MTS, is a clinical social worker and psychotherapist at Gould Farm in the Berkshires of Massachusetts. His current research interests include Queer Theory, yogic philosophy and practice, relational psychodynamic theory, and their intersections with mental health promotion. He is an Advanced Clinical Fellow with the Northampton Institute of Intersubjective Psychotherapy.

 

Tina, Cynthia

 

Cynthia Tina is a board member of the Global Ecovillage Network and the Foundation for Intentional Community. She has visited over one hundred community projects across four continents. She is dedicated to growing networks of people, projects, and communities working in collaboration to regenerate our planet. Learn more at www.cynthiatina.com

 

Topel, Menachem

 

Dr. Menachem Topel is a sociologist, veteran kibbutz member, senior lecturer in the Academic College Sapir and the Social Sciences Referent at Yad Tabenkin, the Kibbutz Research Institute. He is also a board member at Yad Tabenkin as well as an ICSA Board member. Author or co-author of many books and papers about the kibbutz in the era of changes and the communal idea.

 

Wali, Maihan

 

Maihan Wali, originally from Afghanistan, earned her BA in Political Science from Gettysburg College. She is the founder of Women’s Empowerment Through Sport in Afghanistan. She has won the Linnaean Award, Silent Leader Award, G. Ronal Couchman Endowed Diversity Award, Global Citizenship Award, and the Women of Distinction Award. Currently she works with the Cardinal Hayes Home for Children.

 

Wall, Benjamin S.

 

Dr. Benjamin Wall is Theologian in Residence at Church of the Redeemer in Greensboro NC. In 2016 Benjamin published Welcome as a Way of Life: A Practical Theology of Jean Vanier with Cascade Books. In 2017 Benjamin received the Jean Vanier Emerging Scholar Award from the Summer Institute on Theology and Disability. Benjamin's research interests vary along the lines of theology, ethics, and disability studies. Much of his current research and writing focuses on L'Arche and the significance of Jean Vanier's theological and philosophical contributions to society. 

 

Wallace, David

 

David Wallace is originally from Georgia. He joined Triform in 2007 and came to the Village in 2013. David has many interests and loves to recite Shakespeare. He works in the vegetable garden and in the Healing Plant garden workshop and lives in Lirio house.

 

Wallace, Ira

 

Ira Wallace is a cofounder of Acorn Community in Mineral Virginia, and of the Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, one of the country’s best known and most respected sources for heirloom and open-pollinated seeds. She has been a leading voice in the Federation of Egalitarian Communities since her time at Twin Oaks in the 1980s.

 

Winchester, Joan

 

Joan Winchester is L’Arche USA’s Manager of Community Support and Learning and the Western Regional Leader. She is also responsible for addressing the theme of spirituality across all L’Arche communities in the USA. She brings long experience in pastoral leadership and parish ministry to her role in L’Arche.

 

Zuman, Helen

 

Helen Zuman, author and witch, turns waste into food and the stinky guck of experience into fertile, fragrant prose. A graduate of Harvard College, she lives with her husband in Beacon, NY and at Earthaven Ecovillage in Black Mountain, NC. Mating in Captivity is her first book. More at helenzuman.com.

 

 

 

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