OUR Executive Director’s Report (March, 2015)
While most of y’all are shovelling snow, I’m looking out my window at fresh flowers blossoming white on a dark pink plum tree. Impossibly, magically, life bursts forth on its own schedule.
Through the short winter we spent long hours putting together our finances, plans and relationships, leading to a massive mortgage application to three different lenders. By the time the sun shines on the rest of the country, I believe we will be announcing the fruits of that labour, and really the fruits of over a decade of community building: co-operative ownership and management of OUR Ecovillage.
Of course, a mortgage application is only as good as the plan to pay it back and to fully achieve our mission. OUR freshly updated business plan is in full swing as we plan and advertise courses, events and visitors. A record number of people will come through OUR Ecovillage this year to share in the new buildings (eatery, dorm, conference space, and of course the fanciest timber-frame outhouse in the West), fresh program offerings, and energy of re-growth and excitement.
Now is the time to jump in with both feet and be part of this change. We are welcoming prospective “Hearthkeepers” to join the co-op and explore living and working on site. OUR 7-month “Homesteader” internship program is full, but there are still plenty of short- and long-term learning opportunities to try out. And, we’re actively looking for some dynamic, talented people to fill a few key leadership roles:
1. Chef/Eatery Manager: This is your chance to set up and run OUR new Zero Mile Eatery and Teaching Kitchen. Fresh 100-metre ingredients, new dining space, teaching kitchen with camera equipment for remote learners, and thousands of people eager to help prepare and eat as they learn about healthy community living. If you are passionate about sharing your teaching, culinary and leadership skills, this is the chance of a lifetime.
2. Farm Manager: That new chef and those thousands of visitors/contributors are going to rely on you, oh wise dedicated person of the Earth. You and your team will sustainably raise and harvest a rich bounty, teaching and learning about how to respect and feed the soil and ecosystem as well as your fellow community members. Livestock, perennials, CSA program, and always finding that teaching moment–this position is the growing challenge and Joy you’ve been looking for.
Spring is springing and I’m unabashedly in love with the world. So friends, dig yourselves out of that snow and come to OUR land of sunshine and plenty. Bring your vision and your skills and your hunger, and let’s feed each other – mind and body and soul.