We intend to live together in a harmonious, joyful, cooperative and sustainable way while being pro-actively aware and respectful of our inner and outer environments.
'Cooperative' means sharing, working together, respecting each other, pooling resources and skills, working towards a common vision for mutual benefit.
'Sustainable' means fulfilling the needs of the present without degradation of the ecosystem or compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
'Pro-actively' means being responsible, taking action rather than re-acting.
'Inner environment' includes experiences, values, feelings, emotions, inner self.
'Outer environment' includes landscape, fauna and flora, built and social environment, atmosphere and planet
3.BUILDINGS – COMMUNAL & INDIVIDUAL
9.EDUCATION AND RESEARCH
We have chosen a Trading Cooperative as a legal structure to pool our resources and work together. Unlike a Non- Trading Cooperative, a Trading Cooperative, can legally make a profit, which allows us to create wealth and abundance. Together we will be multi millionaires!
The increasing fragmentation of society (moving away from community and large families to smaller and smaller households) is a main cause for the problems human society faces today.
Living cooperatively with many people will reduce our overall requirement of resources as well as improve human relationships, personal growth and caring for each other and our environment.
Further reasons for forming a Cooperative rather then a company are:
A Co-Op gives a vote to each person, while a company for example gives a vote to each dollar.
In a Co-Op, all decisions, including rules and membership, are made with at least 75% of votes, rather then simple majority.
A Co-Op can buy back shares and can charge it's members a fee to cover operational costs.
All cooperatives are governed by a legislated act and a set of model rules. We have adapted the latter to suit our special requirements.
Characteristics of the land shall be its large size (preferably a minimum of 200-300 acres), with large areas of prime agricultural soil, plentiful water, areas of cleared land and natural habitat, ideally bordering on state forest or national park. It is preferred to have no history of poison use.
Our aim in managing the land will be to maintain or increase its biodiversity in harmony with the natural landscape and habitat.
We consider ourselves to be the guardians rather than the owners of the land and intend to leave it to future generations in a better state.
3.a. General Features
Our architecture will reflect an overall design harmony and practicality while allowing for individual and inspirational designs.
3.a.2 Design Features
Buildings will be integrated with the landscape, have minimum ecological footprint and be aesthetically pleasing. They will be designed with consideration to optimal light, space, openness, energy efficiency and overall simplicity. Some of these conditions will be achieved by such things as high ceilings, skylights, glass roofs. courtyards, and green spaces.
Design features will consider durability, low maintenance, passive solar heating and efficient and effective cooling/heating. Buildings will be designed to suit all age groups and physical abilities. Natural hydrology will be retained and maintained, valuable agricultural land will be preserved for agricultural purposes rather than buildings. Fencing will be kept to a minimum with the primary purpose of containing animals. All development will be undertaken with awareness and sensitivity.
3.a.3 Building Materials
Preference will be given to obtaining materials, organic where possible, from sustainable renewable local sources and producers. Use will be made of recycled materials such as timber for beams, trusses, and flooring; bricks; windows; and steel. Other materials may include such things as clay bricks (mud or fired), bamboo, hemp-crete, rocks, adobe or wattle & daub, and steel. Usefulness, cost, longevity and environmental impact of the product over it’s lifespan will be considered.
3.b Communal Buildings
Our vision is to provide buildings to house communal amenities such as a commercial kitchen, dining hall, office spaces, showers and toilets, a laundry and a cyclone shelter. These are our first priorities but we also envision having a reception area, a library, a seminar/workshop area, a recycling place and maybe even a shop for basic needs of members and to sell our produce, as well as a café.
3.b.1 Plant and Equipment will be housed in a machinery and tool shed and shelter for communal vehicles will be provided. Additional storage spaces will be provided in accordance to need.
We envisage having specific areas to process food and for storage, a clay oven for baking and a honey house to process bee products.
3.b.2 Health and Well-being facilities will ultimately include a common prayer/meditation area, retreat areas and healing space, a multi-purpose community hall with dance floor and a stage, an arts and craft centre, a pottery kiln, a heated pool, sauna and spa, education facilities and sports facilities with gym.
Some community buildings will provide sleeping accommodation for singles and doubles in rooms and dormitories, both for members and guests.
3.b.4 Children and youth spaces
We envisage some spaces to be dedicated as children and youth spaces. Children and youth will be invited to participate in the decision making process affecting their communal spaces.
3.b.5 Animals and Gardens
Additionally there will be buildings and shelters in relation to animal husbandry, horticulture and other community activities.
3.c Individual Living Spaces
It is envisioned that individual dwellings will be minimal in size and design, ranging from one room huts to multi-bedroom dwellings, with verandas or decks, designed with consideration of connectedness with the environment. Sample designs with various floor plans will be provided, however, within the parameters of the co-op guidelines/covenant, there will be freedom to create individual designs.
There will also be common houses with individual rooms but shared amenities. Individual spaces will need to be designed to respect privacy, both visual and auditory, for both the dwelling occupant(s) and neighbours as well as considering adjacent shelters, gardens, and co-operative areas.
3.c.1 Domestic Animals
The Co-Op does not encourage or prohibit the keeping of dogs and cats. All non-native pets will need to be strictly controlled. It is the responsibility of the owner to ensure the pet does not hunt any wildlife or disturb people. If such a problem persits, a general meeting can decide the removal of problem animals.
Infrastructure will service and inter-connect private members’ areas and guest or public areas.
Within the settlement car movements will be kept to a minimum and be speed-limited. Walkways, bicycles and electric vehicles will be encouraged for internal transport. Consideration will be given to cost, toxicity and necessity of dirt, gravel or bitumen. There will be a pool of communal vehicles for external use and specified car parking areas.
Of high priority in our vision is permanent running, abundant and good quality water for supply and recreation. Consideration will be given to purchasing a property with a large existing lake or the potential for the construction of dams.
A gravity fed reticulation system is preferred, where pumping is necessary alternatives to petrol pumps will be given priority. Additional water may be obtained from springs, bores, and rainwater tanks. Water conservation and waste water management incorporating a natural grey water treatment system will also be prioritised.
To enhance the aesthetics of the settlement water features will be included. Consideration will be given to harvesting and selling of excess water.
4.c. Hot Water
Top of the list are solar hot water systems combined with rock filled underground tanks for long term heat storage. Other options include thermal bores, parabolic mirrors, and back-up hot water systems attached to slow combustion stoves.
4.d. Waste and Recycling
It is envisaged that waste will be recycled as much as possible and that there will be minimal non-organic waste. Glass and metal can be melted and reused using the technology of a parabolic mirror. Paper and cardboard can be used for making new paper products, used in biogas plants or fed to worms. Plastic use will be discouraged as will one way batteries. Rechargeable batteries and dynamos will be encouraged as well as a willingness to embrace new green technologies.
High quality long life products will be considered over cheap short lasting ones.
Organic waste will be utilised as much as possible by composting, feeding worm farms, producing biogas etc.
4.e. Electricity Generation
We envisage to be independent of the grid. Electricity will be generated by renewable energy systems including solar, hydro, wind, parabolic mirror, and other renewable sources. There will be a central system as well as individual ones utilising several different power sources.
We will be encouraging electricity conservation by using energy saving light bulbs; sensors and dimmers; low wattage appliances and maximum use of natural lighting.
Preference to an underground power system will be given subject to considerations of economics and appropriateness.
Apart from household and industrial use the electricity generated can be used to run electric vehicles and machinery as well as whatever other alternative options our creative thinking can come up with. Excess can be stored and possibly sold.
We will remain open to new developments in the field of energy generation including the use of wind to compress air to drive tools, a generator and/or vehicles.
5. AGRICULTURE - horticulture, aquaculture, forestry, animal husbandry
Agriculture will be engaged in for our own consumption as well as commercially. We will use permaculture, organic and biodynamic methods adapted to local conditions with a focus on seasonal and local foods, while aiming for long-term sustainability for future generations.
We envisage that we will grow a large variety of fruit trees and vegetables (with a preference to using non-hybrid and non GM seeds); spices; herbs for healing and cooking; flowers for scent, aesthetics, oils, and for attracting birds and butterflies; trees for timber, shade and bee food; bush tucker; mushrooms and fungi; bamboo (no running varieties); and industrial hemp.
Aquaculture will be practiced both in our large dams as well as in smaller integrated systems incorporating algae, worms and vegetables.
We are committed to forestry both for long-term timber production as well as for carbon sequestration.
Animal husbandry may include poultry, livestock, aquaculture and bee keeping. All non-native animals will be strictly controlled and/or fenced.
We anticipate selling our surplus commercially including farmers’ markets and food networks. We will be looking to value add by drying, preserving, distilling, brewing and otherwise processing our produce.
Kanjini Co-operative aims to be financially sustainable and abundant through the development of industries, primary producton and other activities, creating income and internal employment. Cooperative businesses will be encouraged over private ones. Individual businesses are subject to Co-op approval and will need to lease facilities and give a small percentage of income to the Co-op.
An internal and external barter and trade system may be established. The cooperative shall not borrow against more than 10% of property value and only if unallocated income-streams can support repayments (unless the continued existence of the Co-Op is threatened by this limitation).
In addition to primary production, cooperative businesses could include guest accommodation, educational courses, classes and seminars (e.g. yoga, meditation, permaculture, alternative energy systems, sustainability), festivals, concerts and so on.
WOOFERS will be encouraged.
The Co-operative will use, research, develop and showcase a wide range of alternative technologies. For example, hybrid, electric and air-powered vehicles, alternative fuels, and other advances in transportation will be embraced where possible.
For further examples please refer to Section 4. Infrastructure
Mobile phone usage will be limited in certain places. TV and music system usage will be subject to guidelines regarding noise levels and visual aesthetics (eg. Satellite dishes).
8. HUMAN INTERACTION
We envision living harmoniously as a mutually supportive and diverse community. To manifest and enhance this concept, we will have regular communal dinners, shared meditations, and meetings.
We work together to create a sustainable future. We sing, dance, laugh and celebrate together to enhance and foster love, friendship, fun, tolerance, trust and truth.
We commit to honesty with each other, clear communication and peaceful methods of conflict resolution.
We share knowledge, creativity and skills and intend that all our interactions to be imbued with compassion, respect, caring, warmth and affection to create an environment conducive to fostering the fullest development of human potential.
We respect the need for privacy while maintaining a commitment to community.
Our wish is to be a happy, healthy, and wise community striving for long-term sustainability and to value natural living, natural sounds and silence, including designated areas for nudity.
In making decisions we aim for unanimous consensus but require at least 75% agreement.
9. EDUCATION AND RESEARCH
One of the main aims of Kanjini Co-Op is to be a model for long-term sustainablility, alternative technology and cooperative living, in harmony with nature and each other.
In order to educate the wider community we envisage forums and workshops, live-in courses and lectures and collaboration with like-minded and research organisations.
We will continuously research and promote these and associated issues, remaining open to new and fresh ideas.