Curious about Land Trusts as a possible avenue for the BMR, I stumbled accross this Equity Trust and found some inspiring stories about other communities making a difference in the world.
Equity Trust is a small, national non-profit organization committed to changing the spirit and character of our material relationships. We help communities to gain ownership interests in land and other local resources, and we work with people to make economic changes that balance the needs of individuals with the needs of the community, the earth, and future generations.
The Woodland Community Land Trust operates in an impoverished Appalachian community in northeastern Tennessee, where access to land and political and economic power has been tightly controlled by a few major extractive companies. For almost forty years, Woodland and its sister organizations, Woodland Community Development Corporation and Clearfork Community Institute, have acquired 450 acres of land and become involved in housing construction, permaculture, small business development, and education, attempting to accumulate sufficient land and skills to build a sustainable community.
Equity Trust first made a loan to Woodland CLT back in 1997 to help purchase 164 acres of strip-mined land that Woodland wanted to save from further destruction. Since then several more loans have been made, enabling Woodland to purchase a building to house its office and community center; to secure land for housing, agriculture, and aquaculture purposes; and to acquire homes for the CLT.
Locavore Farms, located in Modoc County near Fort Bidwell, situated on the Fort Bidwell Indian Reservation, posted an advertisement for a lease/share cropper manager for 37 acres of pasture land with livestock on the property. The owner, or lessee, of the property wishes to focus fulltime on the environmental education program development for the community.
I hope to move to California in December of 2015, and from what I’ve learned so far about this community, this would be the perfect starting place to begin the heavy road work toward building the Beautiful Minds Ranch community.
From the advertisement, I learned that the peoples of this community care deeply about the land and how each action effects the rest of the world. The nearby town is said to be home to a “supportive community of young families and others who are very interested in homesteading, permaculture, food justice, and making this area a healthy and wonderful place for everyone.”
This descresionary opportunity category rates points for green building initiatives; sustainable alternative energy production; water conservation and waste water treatment planning; proximatey of housing to job location; access to health services, and other businesses. Creating jobs and job training programs for low to below moderate income families, at risk youth and transitioning young adults, as well as invdividuals with mobility challenges and social disadvantage.
Posted Date: 8/4/15 Closing Date: 9/3/15
Recover Act Stories from USDA.gov
U.S. forests and working lands supply the country with the majority of the surface water Americans drink. They also clean our air, preserve our wildlife habitats, and are among our Nation’s greatest assets in the battle against global climate change. Through the Recovery Act, the Obama Administration has demonstrated its commitment to protecting these crucial assets and making rural America a healthier place to live by supporting critical investments in the cleanliness and health of the rural environment. These investments to clean up polluted land and water resources will improve the vitality of these rural areas and increase their appeal as places to live and work.