OFF-GRID HEALING CENTER, ORGANIC FARM,
YOGA RETREAT & INTENTIONAL COMMUNITY
VISION OF A SUSTAINABLE ECOVILLAGE
An ecovillage is a group of people sharing a home neighborhood, who are working together to evolve a way of
living that is ecologically sustainable. Paul Hawken describes sustainability simply as a "golden rule": "Leave the
world better than you found it, take no more than you need, try not to harm life or the environment, make amends
if you do." What the eco-villagers harvest from nature for their livelihood will be sufficiently in balance with what
they give back to nature, so that the ecosystems they live in (ultimately Earth) can continue to support them for
the foreseeable future. Donella and Dennis Meadows, and Jergen Rander describe a sustainable society as one
that can persist over generations, and is farseeing enough, flexible enough, and wise enough not to undermine
either its physical or its social systems of support. Since we at Ola Ipa, would like our grandchildren to enjoy life
on a living planet that is healthier than the beleaguered world we live in now, it is high time we start making radical
changes in our lifestyles to head in that direction, even though it may take lifetimes to get to the goal of ecological
sustainability, and we can't know what it will look like until we get there. Making the journey is a reward in itself.
Ola Ipa ecovillage will be a community of diverse people each of whom participates fully in the consensus-based
decision-making process of shaping how the village develops, how it operates day-to-day, and where it is headed
in the future. Since many decisions will be made by the group as a whole, the actual manifestation of such a
community may differ from our vision for the community which we are sharing in the following outline. Despite the
uncertainty about what will actually form, it is still a valuable exercise to elaborate on what we envision might be
incorporated into a mature sustainable community. We realize that the following list may include concepts very
foreign to many readers, but we ask the reader to bear in mind that this is only a partial listing of some of the most
environmentally sustainable solutions available. We expect that an ecovillage will include people from all places
along the journey towards a sustainable society, each experimenting with a unique combination of technologies
and lifestyle choices. Adoption of techniques demonstrated by others would be voluntary, through education and
persuasion, not coercion.
WAYS WE CAN REDUCE WHAT WE TAKE FROM NATURE:
A. Learn how our ecosystems maintain balance so we can wisely choose our strategies for the following:
Living sustainably with the land, Living cooperatively within our intentional community, Creating and maintaining
economically sustainable methods that improve our environment and at the same time can support systems for
barter, trade, donations and selling, Using environmentally friendly construction materials and methods, Maintain
a conscious and safe environment that supports its community members, guests, visitors and clients. Practice non-
violent communication, active listening and conflict resolution.
B. Meet as many of our needs as close to home as possible.
1. Food: on-site organic gardens, on-site bee hives, wild plant harvesting from Forest Reserve, egg-laying
chickens, raising Tilapia fish, support local organic farmers, edible landscaping, ride-sharing to stores and
markets for rice and other staples.
2. Shelter: sustainable construction of modest living spaces of recycled, natural and local materials chosen
for their low environmental impact. Showcase other environmentally friendly shelter technology like bamboo home,
air-crete structure, earth-bag structure, tree house, shipping container home and log home from logs harvested
3. Water: on-site filtered rainwater and catchment system for sinks, and showers, on-site filtered groundwater
for drinking and cooking.
4. Tools: shared community tools, community woodshop, community mechanic shop, repairing and salvaging
usable goods, use local wood for furniture, plant fibers, stone, bones, etc.
5. Work: Running Healing Center and Yoga Retreat, Yoga Classes, Massage and Healings, Sound Healings,
Seminars, Workshops, Lectures, Classes and Trainings, Additional cottage industries: Bio-char, Tilapia, Chicken
Eggs, Jams and nut butters, Bitters, Cane Juice, Kombucha and Jun, Coconut Kefir, Cafe, Auto Reclamation and
repair, Plastic Construction Blocks, Art, Herbal medicine, Consulting
6. Inspiration: art, music, drama, crafts, games, lectures, worship, camping, swimming, sweat lodges,
shamanic drumming, community potlucks, give-aways, weekly movies, etc.
C. Minimize energy needed to meet our needs, and use on-site renewable sources to maximum effect.
1. Space heating: wood stove heat for hot yoga classes.
2. Domestic hot water: solar water heater, instant-on propane water heater, wood stoves heater for hot tub.
3. Lighting: day lighting, LED lights, candles and lanterns, ground-level solar lights for paths (minimal outdoor
lighting), tiki torches for events.
4. Food Preservation: solar ovens and dryers, canning, root cellars, solar-powered refrigerators and
freezers, Bio-char maker will produce heat for cooking and baking.
5. Appliances: wind, water, human torque or renewable solar electrical power.
6. Electrical power: photovoltaic, windmills and mini-hydropower.
7. Transportation: home-based work, telecommuting, ride-sharing, human-powered (bicycle), bio-diesel fuel-
D. Maximize the useful life of the resources we do take from nature, trying to use all parts.
1. Water: cascading of uses and reuses, rainwater collection, gray-water recycling, aquifer recharge, plants,
constructed wetland, pond.
2. Nutrients: eat all edible food parts, compost food scraps or feed to chickens, composting toilets, bio-char,
vermiculture, black soldier flies.
3. Building Materials and Tools: design for flexibility and repair, re-use /salvage, re-cycle, biodegrade.
E. Minimize the processing of resources required to make them useful to us.
1. Building Materials: lava stone walls, local trees for building wood and posts, cinder for earth-bag
2. Gardening: sharing all food, no-till, permaculture methods, eating with the seasons, whole foods, drying
F. Utilize abundant, renewable resources before scarce ones, to help keep the ecological balance.
WAYS WE CAN INCREASE WHAT WE GIVE BACK TO NATURE:
A. Create a culture valuing ecological balance over economic and population growth.
1. Creative Arts: song, dance, music, cooking, drama, storytelling, painting, sculpture, etc.
2. Ethics/ Spirituality: encourage diversity of backgrounds, linked by honoring all life on earth.
3. Government/ Politics: consensus, experiment with attunement, council of all living beings (include a voice
for plants, animals and minerals in decision making) etc.
4. Economics: build local economy valuing the natural and human capital over monetary profits.
5. Agriculture: maximize options for gardening, Community Supported Agriculture, Permaculture.
6. Meaningful work: fewer total hours, balance of tasks, more land, home and telecommuting based
businesses. Work for barter, trade instead of for money.
B. Return our used resources to nature as close to home as possible, in forms useful to other beings.
1. Building Materials: natural materials (earth, thatch, wood, etc.) biodegrade when discarded.
2. Compostable materials: food and yard scraps, human & animal "wastes" belong to earth, not water.
3. Water: avoid adding toxins and nutrients or treat to remove them before returning to hydro-cycle.
4. Other materials: avoid buying things you can't recycle and don't want to landfill in your own yard. If you
purchase something from a store, remove all excess packaging, especially plastic and leave in the stores trash
can. Remove all excess packaging of post office items and leave in the post office trash can. Leave all junk mail at
post office. Only bring home what is necessary.
C. Maximize our personal energy invested in bringing ecosystems into balance, both at home and abroad.
1. Cultivating native and endangered species: wetland and rainforest plants first, then animals. Weed out
invasive tree (i.e. Chinese Gunpowder and Sacropia, etc.) and plant species, shred and use in compost. Help
prevent the spread of invasive insects like Little Fire Ants.
2. Combating pollution and erosion: starting at home, then neighborhood, region and globally.
3. Political action or exporting concepts for sustainable culture: both locally and globally.
D. Invest time in processing of our used resources to make them useful to other living beings.
1. Scrap wood into bat & bird houses.
2. Using cardboard, paneling and plywood as layering in compost piles.
E. Give from our abundance to parts of ecosystems showing disease, thus keeping ecological balance.
1. Add nutrients and energy where lacking: eg. parched, eroded soils need humus, plants, worms, etc.
2. Remove nutrients & energy where surplus: eg. algae-choked pond needs run-off pre-filtered.
MAY OUR COMMUNITY BRING OUR GIVING & TAKING INTO EVER CLOSER BALANCE
David Orr, Professor of Environmental Sciences at Oberlin College, cautions us to distinguish between
"technological sustainability" and "ecological sustainability". "Technological sustainability" - the concept that
human kind is dominant over nature and will find a "techno-fix" for every problem. "Ecological sustainability" -
recognizing that humankind is part of nature; that there are limits to growth and carrying capacity; and that nature
should be regarded as a model for the design of housing, cities, neighborhoods, technologies and regional
economics. According to Orr, sustainability depends upon replicating the structure and function of natural
Architect Sim Vander Ryn's equation and five steps to sustainability: "Sustainability = Conservation (frugality) +
Regeneration (healing) + Stewardship (responsibility)"
1. Solutions grow out of knowing where you are. Look to local resources, skills and knowledge
for design solutions. Let the place and its inhabitants determine the whole context for design.
2. Trace the footprint. Trace the ecological impacts of your actions.
3. Design with Nature. Look to the living world for design strategies. Actively incorporate living
systems in designs.
4. Participatory Design. Listen to every voice in the design process. As we engage the living
world in community with others, we are rewoven in life's web.
5. Make flows visible. Live with your design, find out how it works, and learn from it. The
challenge is to make long-hidden natural processes both visible and viable.
Elizabeth Klein identifies 4 characteristics of communities that are becoming more sustainable:
1. Economic Security. A more sustainable community includes a variety of businesses, industries and
institutions which are environmentally sound (in all aspects), financially viable, provide training, education, and
other forms of assistance to adjust to future needs, provide jobs and spend money within a community and enable
employees to have a voice indecisions which affect them. A more sustainable community also is one in which
resident's money remains in the community.
2. Ecological Integrity. A more sustainable community is in harmony with natural systems by reducing and
converting waste into non-harmful and beneficial products and by utilizing the natural ability of environmental
resources for human needs without undermining their ability to function over time.
3. Quality of Life. A more sustainable community recognizes and supports people's evolving sense of well-
being, which includes a sense of belonging, a sense of place, a sense of self-worth, a sense of safety, and a
sense of connection with nature and provides goods and services which meet peoples' needs both as they define
them and as can be accommodated within the ecological integrity of natural systems.
4. Empowerment and Responsibility. A more sustainable community enables people to feel empowered and
take responsibility based on a shared vision, equal opportunity, ability to access expertise and knowledge for their
own needs, and a capacity to affect the outcome of decisions that affect them.
Permaculture is PERMAnent agriCULTURE...Acres USA: "The more you understand, the more you can put nature
to work for you, the less you need."
• Permaculture is the design of human living spaces around environmental principles.
• Permaculture is not an end or a destination, but rather a means or road leading towards sustainable and
ecologically sound ways to meet human needs.
• Permaculture uses thoughtful observation rather than mindless labor. It uses cunning not resources. It
works to slow the rate of increase of entropy (disorder). It turns waste to resources and problems into assets.
• Permaculturists treat every situation differently; work parallel to nature, not at right angles to it. They care
for the earth, care for people, give away surplus, and always pick up hitch-hikers.
• Permaculture attempts to answer the question: How can we live on this planet in a graceful and healthy way,
respecting the plants and animals around us and leaving the biosphere in a more productive and healthy state
than we found it? The answer, complex and fascinating, weaves together microclimate, annual and perennial
plants, animals, soil and water management and human needs into intricately connected productive communities.
• Permaculture Principles: System yield is the sum total of surplus energy produced by, stored, conserved,
reused, or converted by the design. Energy is in surplus once the system itself has available all its needs for
growth, reproduction and maintenance. Unused surplus results in pollution and more work. Permaculture Ethics:
The only ethical decision is to take responsibility for our own existence and that of our children. Cooperation, not
competition, is the very basis of future survival and of existing life systems.
Principles of Natural Capitalism (Paul Hawken, Amory & Hunter Lovins):
a. Use the resources we have much more efficiently.
b. Shift the structure of the economy from the industrial model to one based on natural and biological
principles, so that we eliminate the concept of waste. Nature has no waste. Everything you might define as waste
is a food for something else. The loops are closed; nature doesn't produce toxic materials that buildup in society.
c. Change the design of commerce from selling stuff - the episodic acquisition of goods - to a continuous flow
of value and service in a relationship that anticipates and meets the consumer's evolving value needs. In this way,
both the customer and the provider profit from ever-greater efficiency.
d. Invest in our natural and human capital.
Land Area Specifics: 2.5 Acres + 3 Acres
Current/Proposed Residence Types:
• Tiny Homes
• Shipping Container Homes
• Tree House
• Hawaiian Style Home
• Bamboo House
• Aircrete House
• Log Home
• Energy Infrastructure: Solar
• Planned Renewable Energy Generation: 100% except during construction
• Water: Rainwater Catchment and Filter
• Water Heating: Solar Water Heating and Propane Water Heater
• Drinking Water: Collected at County Water Sources, Sink Well
• Current Food Produced: Up to 50%
• Planned Food Produced: Up to 75%
• Food Produced Locally: From 50-75%
• Non-local foods: rice, quinoa, ...
Members work/trade labor for housing, food and other benefits
During Start up, members can pay to live here.
Labor over 20 hours/week will be paid starting $15/hour (when Ola Ipa is making money, otherwise hours are
Membership Process: People become members through the consensus decision of the current membership,
potential members may visit community for 2 weeks and then become a prospective member. Prospective
members can become a full member with voting rights after 1 year. There is a refundable application fee.
• Common Facilities:
o Common House
o Hot tub, sweat lodge
o community Kitchen
o cafe Kitchen
o Fire pit and altar
o Swingsets and play areas
o communications building
o community bathroom and shower
o fish ponds
o yoga retreat/healing center
• Internet Available: Yes, only in communications building, No WiFi, hardwired only
• Cellphone Service: Poor reception, except up road. Phones only in Communication Building
• Landline telephone in Communication Building
• Shared Meals: main meal daily noon-1:30, breakfast and supper on your own
• Dietary Choice or Restrictions: No GMO, organic, mostly local.
• Special Diets OK: Sometimes
• Alcohol Use: no, discussion necessary
• Tobacco Use: No, this community does not permit tobacco use.
• Education Style(s): Up to each family or individual, home school
• Expected Healthcare Practices: no Vaccinations required, prefer natural medicine, herbal, acupuncture,
• drug use- prefer drugs be used for medicinal or spiritual purposes only. No hard drugs allowed!
Honor Great Spirit in all of my thoughts, words and deeds. Meditate and Pray daily. Share Ceremony.
Honor Mother Earth. Live Simply and in Harmony, Reduce Consumerism. Defend and Protect.
Honor My Soul. Align actions with Soul’s purpose. Integrate Soul and personality.
Truth and Honesty. (Trust, Integrity, Respect, Honor, Faithful).
Physical, Emotional and Mental Health. Eat Organic Foods. Do Yoga. Drink water. Fast, Read, Love,
Laugh, Cry, Smile, Play, Breathe, Sleep and have Sex.
Liberty. Fight Oppression, Racism, Militarism, Poverty and Injustice. Support Privacy, Freedom and ending
Love Myself, my Partner, my Children, Friends, Family and Community. Support and Nurture each other.
Communicate, Trust, Romance, Touch.
Gratitude. Be thankful for everything.
Be of Service. Heal Self and others. Teach Self and others. Be helpful and generous.
Forgiveness. Forgive Self and Others.
Adventure. Travel, Be creative.
Beauty. Appreciate Life.
I have invested my entire life savings into purchasing the land, legal fees, developing it, building the infrastructure
and building the healing center and out buildings. If the healing center is a success, I would like to get back my
initial investment, however, if it is not a success, I will lose my investment. My intention is that God, KeAkua owns
the land. My desire is that like-spirited individuals live in community on the property. Loving the land, caring for it
and each other, respecting all life and preserving it for our children's, children's children. I am seeking honest,
kind, supportive, dependable, response-able and respectful humans to create community and manage a
ecological friendly business to support the community.