Our main challenge is to transcend our egos and discover meaningful & entertaining ways to earn our livelihood, connect community, improve ourselves & our environment. Objective: host participatory experiences for the local community & youth camps, which combine entertainment, organic food, education and connecting locals. Our intention is to propel & support youth-led projects which use local resources, meet our fundamental needs and create meaningful livelihoods in zero-waste communities.
Agios Charalampos, Korinthia, Greece
> No awareness on consumption/waste cycle, so rubbish bins and roadsides are full of organic matter which can be composted and materials which can be reused.
> Rural residents lack a holistic worldview, critical thinking, collaboration skills, creativity and initiative & most think that the government/municipalities are responsible for making their life interesting, creating jobs & solving their problems.
> Youth unemployment in Greece was at 36% in Feb 2020, the highest in Europe.
> Local farmers rely on migrants for labour, have no generational renewal and are disconnected from the local community, travelling to cities to sell their produce & discarding surplus.
> Area lacks meaningful community projects, cultural cohesion, activities & job prospects, so young people are leaving.
Participation is the basis of civic engagement and democracy. It strengthens solidarity & ‘response-ability’: our ability to respond. We use sociocracy as an organisational tool for creating, deciding and implementing solutions to reduce & reuse waste.
>Youth Camps: immersive experiences which cultivate young entrepreneurial leaders to lead the social, environmental and economic regeneration of our area.
>Zero-waste community building experiences: educational theatricals, meals, local organic food and conversations. Using the Art of Participatory Leadership we discuss: How can we meet our needs: municipality or self-organising?”, “How can I earn a livelihood? Look for a job or convert wasted resources into opportunities?”
>Community Composting initiatives
We are doing it for ourselves! Beneficiaries: of the youth camps are rural youth ages 7-25; of our Community Building Experiences are the entire local community (esp. farmers) of all ages, since anyone can participate, decide and get involved in local actions. This will be especially appealing to our elderly population who have much to share & are often left alone. Our focus is our municipality of Loutraki-Ag. Theodori, with a population of 21.100 people, 6 primary schools and 5 high schools. The population here is primarily involved in agricultural activities and agriculture-related businesses, so compost is key to improving the soil and cultivation efforts and there is potential to innovate around upcycling waste materials to cover agricultural needs.
>Perform Kompostopia theatrical at schools & recruit students for Youth Camp
>Build community directory
>Run youth camp: Essential life-skills learning on permaculture, sociocracy, non-violent communication, participatory leadership, dancing, wildlife adventures, etc for holistic perspective; train the trainer (older youth to train young); prepare artistic presentation.
>Run community building experiences with youth
-Theatrical performance & composting workshop
-Community Building with food and Participatory Leadership practices:
*networking game-learn & match needs and offers
*establish teams responsible for neighbourhood composting units
*introduce organic producers & Community Supported Agriculture schemes
*youth present their regenerative community projects (eg. reforestation)
Rubbish bins are almost empty, our area is cleaner and greener, the streets are buzzing with activity. People know each other by name, are composting, upcycling, exchanging goods, helping each other. We gather at Kompostopia to eat, participate in community building events and have sociocratic meetings to discuss and solve local issues coming up.
Young people are cocreating meaningful opportunities, engaging locals in their projects, training younger kids & inviting us to their artistic, participatory and educational events! Farmers are enjoying richer soils, have help available, are sharing an abundance of fresh, organic food with the community and don’t have to travel. We are sharing resources in the neighborhood, such as tools, machinery and even cars. We are having fun!
The youth will be trained to act locally & feel empowered to change their world wherever they are. Each young leader will be armed with tools to become change agents & turn responsibility into action - which is the foundation of democracy. Citizens who take responsibility in their neighbourhoods create feedback for municipalities on how to move towards problem solving. Plus, The Yellow Projects plan to establish community hubs around Europe that are interlinked with each other. Once using sociocracy as a collaborative decision making tool to harnesses collective intelligence is proven, it will strengthen democracy on a local level and provide a replicable model to strengthen democracy in Europe.
My heart motivates me to bring this idea to life. I’m free to do what I love each day and I would love other people to experience the same! My ultimate vision is to live in a community of abundance where everyone is free to do what they love. It’s no coincidence that I’m called Kompostina and I live in Kompostopia, a utopia that’s achieved by caring for the land and people! I have a burning desire to share with young people everything I wish I had learnt at school and that I have spent the last 25 years of my life searching & learning, to expose them to radically different concepts and experiences that expand their worldview so that they realise that ultimately, they are free to create their livelihood in a way that’s fun, meaningful, creative and harmonious.
Funding requested from Civic Europe
Project management, documentation & facilitation (personnel costs) 20,000
Community directory establishment & maintenance 2,000
Community composting establishment & maintenance 2,000
Youth camp pilot (2 weeks) 10,000
Performances at schools & municipality 7,000
Community Building Experience pilot 2,000
Travel and accommodation 5,000
Office expenses 1,000
Public Relations 1,000
How could Kompostopia get better, more effective, more fun-tastic?