We were delighted to be recognized!
|Hi there you person who is interested in our Blog! Welcome! Below is some information about the Sustainability award we just won. (YAY!) We thought we would stick it up here your you to enjoy... and also to update our posts. Yes. It is true. Our blog is a...well... a tiny bit out dated.|
Not because we don't have news to share, but because life here moves so quickly and joyfully that we've sort of forgotten to write about it. We'd love to show you for ourselves. Please be in touch and we'll arrange a tour. If you would like to live here you'd best come soon as we are selling out very soon.
Congratulations to Yarrow Ecovillage - Groundswell Cohousing Development. This year marked the 19th Annual Chilliwack Chamber of Commerce Business Awards, where wonderful local companies are recognized in a variety of categories. The Yarrow Ecovillage was nominated for a "Sustainability Leadership Award" - The City of Chilliwack and the Chamber of Commerce are pleased to recognize outstanding contributions via sustainable initiatives. The recipient of this award has actively implemented, integrated and promoted sustainability into the workplace. They are recognized for their outstanding contributions to community sustainability through economic, social and environmental excellence and have demonstrated a visible commitment to sustainable business practises."
After answering a number of probing questions directed at how the Ecovillage manages its resources and encourages better practices, plus an in person interview and tour of the site.....The Ecovillage gratefully accepted the award.
Frequently Asked Questions about the Ecovillage you may like to know the answers to:
What is an 'ecovillage'?
The definition of an ecovillage, according to the Global Ecovillage Network is: "an intentional or traditional community using local participatory processes to holistically integrate ecological, economic, social, and cultural dimensions of sustainability in order to regenerate social and natural environments." Basically, we are a group of people with the desire to work with each other within the village, as well as connect to the larger community, developing positive relationships and fostering care for our planet and its resources.
How did you get so many houses in one spot?
The ecovillage is 25 acres. Some people have pulled land out of ALR to subdivide into half acre lots; if our 25 acres were treated in that way, it would have resulted in fifty homes.
Over a number of years of negotiations with the City of Chilliwack, we jointly created an ecovillage zoning which allowed us to preserve 20 acres of ALR, build 33 homes to date on 2.5 of the acres and leave room for a 2.5 acre commercial/apartment development.
How did you do the septic?
We did not put in a septic as the size of the septic field required would have significantly encroached on our farm land. We did work with a professional company (Arden Consulting) to develop and install a wastewater treatment system that finishes in a series of constructed treatment wetlands that we planted with native vegetation. These wetlands filter our wastewater resulting in the discharge of clean water, and are also providing habitat for birds and amphibians.
What is so sustainable about those houses? They look huge!
Our homes are smaller than an average house in Chilliwack. Of the 33 homes, 3 are a bit over 2000 sq feet, 16 are approximately 1000 sq feet and the remaining 14 homes are about 1500 sq feet. As all but 2 homes are multi-family (duplex, triplex, 4 and 5 plex) we have used less materials in the construction to begin with - less siding, roofing, concrete bases and so on, plus, we have less heat loss overall due in part to the shared internal walls. The 2 single family homes are the 'beehive' or dome homes, unique structures in themselves.
What religion are you?
We are not a religious community. Our community is comprised of diverse people with diverse beliefs and world-views.
So do you all work at the Deli or on the farm?
No, the Deli is privately owned and run by the wonderful people who work there. The farm is leased annually, by acre, to organic farmers who sell their products at the farm stand, through a Community Supported Agriculture program, and at local Farmer's Markets.Many of the farmers do live here, but a few live off site.
What kind of jobs do people have there?
Well, this is a broad question, but we have project managers, professors, teachers, systems administrators, scientists, directors, tradesmen and consultants, to name a few. Business owners, farmers and retired folk too. Many of us work offsite, telecommute or both.
If you would like to know more, have a look around, or get involved, please contact us online.
We host pre-booked tours every other Saturday.