October 2012 Meeting Minutes and November 2012 Agenda

Hello Fellow Villagers,

It was wonderful to see you all last night.

Attached is a summary of the meeting.  I included what I remembered so please feel free to email the group with any additions and/or revisions.

Please review the last two pages which include a list of tasks and responsibility so that everyone is clear on expectations for our next meeting.  If you haven’t signed up to work with a team, please do so.  Some of you signed up in prior meetings but since I didn’t have that list I cannot merge it.  Therefore, please review this current list of tasks and sign up again. Thanks.

All the teams agreed to meet before our next meeting so that work can happen in between meetings and we can present our findings to each other on Sunday, Nov. 11th, our next meeting.  It will be held at Judy and Ray’s house at 6pm.  A light dinner will be served.

Meeting Date: 10/22/12

Location: Ute’s house

Attendees: Ute, Laurie, Connie, Joe, Douglas, Zak, Jennifer, Maria, Barbara, Renate, Janine, Teddy, and Judy.


Music, Poetry, Introductions – welcome new members Zak, Janine, and Teddy!

  • Open discussion: How do you feel about the group’s progress and status?
  • Group Exercise – answer the following 5 questions.
  • Formation of Teams to Complete Tasks.
  • Convene for snacks – Thank you Ute for providing comforting vegetable soup, warm cider, incredible plum cake and dandelion coffee, and everyone else for yummy treats to cap off the evening.
  • Slide Show reserved for next meeting.
  • Next meeting will be held at Judy and Ray’s on Sunday, November 11th at 6pm. Light dinner will be served.

Brief Summary

There was general consensus and desire to move the project forward.  The goal was to leave the meeting with concrete next steps. Members formed teams of three for the group exercise and to answer the questions below. There was time to answer all questions but only time to reflect and share the first two questions with the entire group.  Please see below for a summary of what was discussed and agreed upon from the group discussion of questions 1 and 2.

Additionally, each member was asked how they would commit to moving the project forward.  There was a sense of need and urgency for every member to commit and contribute to the next step.

There was also substantial discussion around concerns for the following topic.  However, the group decided to continue these discussions at a later date in order to focus on the meeting agenda.

  • Our community’s core values are just as important as the mission statement.  They should be folded into our work and vision.
  • Securing finances – how to market ourselves to potential sponsors?  Anyone interested and capable in grant writing?  Do we hire a professional? What is our key selling point to potential sponsors?  The group agreed that the selling point would involve “healing” in some form.  What ideas can each individual member come up with in terms of selling “healing”?
  • Possibility of seeking property that can be “re-purposed” and reused as oppose to building from scratch.  Is there an existing eco-village that is looking to “sell”?  Can we re-use a former campsite?
  • Desire to form and live in community sooner rather than later.  Can we find a way to live in community while we build the “ideal” eco-village?

Group Exercise

  1. What do you see the next step will have to be for the      eco-village?
  2. What will be your role in bringing this about?
  3. If you need support in this, who will you choose to be on your      team?
  4. What is your estimated time frame in which you will accomplish      this – be specific.
  5. How and when will you report your findings, research, hands-on      doing… to the community?

Group Exercise: Replies to questions 1 and 2.  Smaller teams presented these ideas and discussed with larger group.  The list below embodies the discussion that resulted.

Question 1: What do you see the next step will have to be for the eco-village?

1)      Write a Mission Statement.  All 4 groups came up with the need to create a mission Statement.  A declaration of purpose to guide all members as well as for use when presenting our community to potential members and sponsors.  Also, important to have a list of core community values.  How will our group serve?

2)      Develop a process to identify and assign tasks.  Include a timeline and a process on how to report status of tasks. Work in smaller teams on tasks in order to generate creative ideas and share the effort.

3)       Begin to work on Finances in two parts – first, how to source funding and second, how to manage the finances.

4)      Search for Land. Include search for existing property that can be “re-purposed”.

5)      Visit other eco-villages and also ascertain whether there are some that are available for purchase so we don’t have to build from scratch.

6)      Consider how to structure the group: incorporate, not-for-profit status, etc. Ute has 501c3 for her company and Renate has an approved state school status (NJ) that can potentially be explored for use.

7)      Develop a Project Management team of 5 people to lead the project (e.g., manage activities to continue forward momentum, provide organization to the group and process, etc).  This team will just lead the process.  Decision-making is still intended to be on a consensus basis by the entire group.

8)      Have more frequent communication/meetings to continue momentum.  Perhaps this can be achieved via online and through smaller team meetings that work on specific tasks.

Question 2:  What will be your role in bringing this about?

IMPORTANT – These are deliverables for our next meeting. For those who were unable to attend, please select a task that you would like to contribute to and contact fellow members in that group.  The smaller teams will meet before our next general meeting to work on the tasks they signed up for.

ResponsibilityEvery member

Task  – Every member will brainstorm on a “healing idea”.  What can you contribute to the eco-village?  If we were to present an idea to potential sponsors, what would you like to “sell” to them?  How does your idea serve our neighbors, the broader community, and the earth? Other constituents?  How is your idea saleable and appealing to potential sponsors? The hope is that this individual exercise will prompt each member to be thoughtful about their own skills, interests and passion and think creatively of how s/he can best serve and make contributions to the eco-village.  The idea does not have to be entirely feasible, so be creative!  The only requirement is that your idea evolves around some form of “healing” (e.g., a healing garden for inner city children, mentoring at risks teen girls, working with abused people, etc).

Timing – each member will email Judy with their idea by Nov. 5th so that a consolidated list can be provided at next meeting.  Those compelled will also present their idea at next meeting.

ResponsibilityUte, Laurie, Connie and Douglas.

Task – to create a mission statement and develop ideas around core community values. Timing – at next meeting, this team will present a draft of the mission statement and a list of core values.

ResponsibilityUte, Barbara, Judy, Maria, Laurie (?)

Task – to identify those eco-villages to visit.  Obtain contact names and potential dates for visit.

Timing – at the next meeting, this team will present a list of 3-5 potential communities and provide brief background of community.


Task – to identify and create appropriate (and easy to use) online vehicles for communication.

Timing – at next meeting, present suggestions.  If time permits, create the vehicles beforehand.

Recruitment Joe + OTHERS?

Task – to identify prospective members. Perhaps a process that can be used for recruitment?? Other ideas?

Timing – at next meeting, present finding, ideas???  This was not discussed sufficiently at meeting, so feel free to add/revise.

ResponsibilityUte, Judy, + 3 OTHERS

Task – Provide project management and organization to the group’s activities. This may include suggesting meeting agendas, summarizing meetings, providing group exercises, facilitating smaller teams on tasks, etc.  What else would be helpful to the members? Please chime in here.

Timing –  Ongoing.  At next meeting, provide agenda, publish notes post-meeting.  All are welcome to provide suggestions to agenda and we can incorporate.

Responsibility – Ray (budget management) and OTHERS (for sourcing funds)

Task – to source funds and manage funds (once we have it!)

Timing – we need immediate volunteers to source funds.

Responsibility – any takers??

Task – to identify process of finding land, which realtors are capable and interested, attending showings, etc.

Timing – TBD

~ END~

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