local relationships based on common ideas
From the Transition Network
From Reliable Prosperity:
In order to assess changes to our environment, current and accurate data about various features of its health are needed. These monitoring initiatives can focus on a wide range of variables (e.g. phosphate level in local water bodies, amount of erosion from farm fields, etc), but the best programs share the traits of being done frequently enough to notice changes in dynamic variables and with a long enough history to gauge whether trends are particularly noteworthy or relatively normal.
Sense of place centers around acknowledgement of our human connection to other people in our places on earth, as well as other creatures and natural processes that are vital to the life of our home ecosystems. It binds community and ecosystem, reminding us of our ancient allegiances to the more-than-human domain.
Energy efficiency and conservation refers to promoting both more efficient technology that uses less energy to perform the same task, and reducing unnecessary energy use, with the overall aim of reducing energy demand without detracting from end-use benefits.
Wildlife habitat conservation is the practice of protecting and preserving the habitat of wildlife species, preventing habitat loss, and promoting land management that enhances wildlife habitat and prevents wildlife species extinction in the long term. Destroying habitats will one day end in the destruction of the world as we know it. Without maintaining healthy habitats, the delicate ecosystems which sustain the Earth will collapse. Wildlife habitat conservation is arguably one of the most important world issues because habitat is the world.
Citizen science is the practice of public participation and collaboration in scientific research to increase scientific knowledge. Through citizen science, people share and contribute to data monitoring and collection programs. Usually this participation is done as an unpaid volunteer. Scientists may create a citizen-science program to capture more or more widely spread data without spending additional funding.
Reliable prosperity depends on the Access to knowledge of its citizens.
Our present economy is systematically contaminating every living cell; destroying and fragmenting habitat; and providing great stress to human populations.
Conventional education, at all levels, largely ignores the broad context and specific skills that define an emerging reliable prosperity. Fragmented by discipline and disconnected with place, it leaves people ill prepared to direct the enormous transitions that are occurring.
When local economies are dependent on only a few major sectors, they are vulnerable to changes in outside markets. When people do not meet their own needs locally, money immediately leaves a community.
Merry Lea offers public programs for community members of all ages. Throughout the year Merry Lea's Sustainable Farm, and Merry Lea as a whole, hosts a number of community events. Some of these include the Merry Lea farm open house, the spring birding challenge, NatureFest, and many more.
The Institute for Ecological Regeneration, under the umbrella of Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center, is committed to bringing renewal
In the midst of unprecedented wealth throughout the bioregion, there are still rural and urban pockets of poverty, hunger, sub-standard housing, and poor health-care.
Enormous amounts of wealth are tied up in economic activities that are not likely to play a significant role in reliable prosperity. Many people perceive a significant stake for themselves — personally and economically — in perpetuating the status quo.
We need opportunities for deep relaxation, to absorb the beauty and fullness of life, and to simply play.
Beauty and play is an inalienable right of all beings. Two young girls from Richmond, California on their first trip to an ancient forest play handgames with the sawed-off end of a thousand-year old redwood tree in Muir Woods. A sun-dappled crowd gathers at a waterfront park for an afternoon of Blues. An old couple strolls through an art gallery, admiring the work of centuries past.
People are often dependent on distant, unhealthy food sources. This reduces ties to the local landscape, further eroding the stability of the food system.
Communities need opportunities to celebrate themselves and their connection to place.
Celebration is a profound response to the magnificence of the mountains and rivers, creatures large and small, sun and moon, storm and clearing which define the rhythms of life in our chosen place. It binds community and ecosystem, reminding us of our ancient allegiances to the more-than-human domain.