OUR Sustainer – Nikki Tate
OUR Sustainers work to support the day-to-day activities of the Village, making monthly contributions to ensure that we can continue our work around education, sustainable food production, and community. Because we think they are pretty great and want to share their stories with OUR community, we’ll be profiling them in our newsletter and on the blog over the next several months. Our first profile is on Nikki Tate.
How long have you been a sustainer?
I just joined up after the Thanksgiving Harvest Feast!
What inspired you to become one?
I think the work the Village is doing is great—I love all the natural buildings and wish I could have a little cob house for my goats on the farm—or me, when I dream big! The things I do on my farm are, in some ways, similar to what is going on at the Village. It’s important to support other farmers and local food security groups.
How did you find out about O.U.R. Ecovillage?
I’ve actually known about it since the beginning when my friend [and one of the founders] tried to get me to move to the Village! As life does, mine took a different path and we did some travelling before settling on a small farm of our own on the Saanich Peninsula. Now, nearly 20 years later, my daughter is working at the Village and some sort of cosmic loop has been closed: it’s very cool!
Has the Village and/or becoming a sustainer had a wider impact on your life?
I’m more inspired to build that goat house! It’s great to make some new partnerships and learn from each other. We’re also working together to share resources like my Cotswold ram, Babar! Hopefully the Village will welcome some of his lambs next spring.
When you aren’t at the Village, what would readers find you doing?
Running my small farm on the Saanich Peninsula—over at Dark Creek (darkcreekfarm.com) we have chickens, turkeys, ducks, horses, goats, hogs, sheep, and a market garden. We love raising heritage breeds to try to do our bit to preserve some of those old farm animal genetics. There’s a lot going on a small amount of space, so we work with some of our neighbours to make the most of the land we each have. It’s almost like a mini Ecovillage, but on connected properties, not one big piece of land.
When I’m not farming, I’m writing. My current project is my 23rd book for children, which is about different types of dwellings found around the world. My daughter (and co-author) and I were thrilled to spend a few days in the Healing Sanctuary working on the first draft—what a perfect place to work on a book about interesting housing!
Do you have one piece of advice or a favourite quote you’d like to share with readers?
If you’re interested in farming or building like at the Village, just give it a try! Start with a few backyard chickens or a little cob project. It’s all possible in some way, no matter where you are. It’s a mistake to wait until all your ducks are in a row before getting started. Ducks just don’t tend to line up like that!
Are you interested in becoming a sustainer?
Sustainers contribute $10 or $20 a month and receive 10–20% off courses and events, invitations to sustainers-only activities, free entrance to OUR annual Harvest Feast, and more. Learn more and sign up by following this link.