Neighborhood Email Newsletters &Tool Shares

Anne Burgevin commented on the Sketches post:

I love your drawings and the visions they represent. I am thinking of beginning a neighborhood list serve here in the outskirts of Pine Grove Mills along with a ride board (car pooling) and tool sharing. What do you think about this idea? Do you have any suggestions as to how to get started? I fund raised $3,000.00 in our neighborhood for a neighbor who lost her entire home to a fire last winter, so I have a good many email addresses of our neighbors now and some of them seem to like to be in touch on the computer. I’d love to know your thoughts and wonder if this could be a pilot “test” for a bigger tool share in the borough! Let me know. Thanks and Happy New Year, Anne

I think neighborhood list-serves and tool shares are a great idea and would love to see you start a pilot test of both. I’d love to see those things popping up in neighborhoods all over Central PA.

A few months ago, Jackie Bonomo put together a sample letter for neighborhood newsletters: Sample Neighborhood Letter.

On how to get started? Just start.

I’m signed up for the homesteading pre-conference track at the PASA conference next month, and went to the website of one of the presenters. Kate Hunter, a “surburban peasant and thrivalist,” blogs at Living the Frugal Life. She has a great list of abstract assets: “things that I can’t take a picture of that nonetheless help us enormously:”

  • knowing local farmers who produce food in a sustainable, ethical way
  • a try-anything-once attitude
  • a clear understanding of what we consider ethical, and unethical
  • certainty that money and material goods are not the keys to happiness
  • our health
  • extremely low exposure to advertising (no TV, few magazine subscriptions, Adblocker, etc.)
  • unflagging curiosity about the natural world and a wide interest in many skills
  • nearby and supportive family
  • irregular but enormously useful help from WWOOF volunteers

I think that try-anything-once attitude is absolutely crucial for people at work in the sustainable community-building field. To me, it means letting go of the desire to know how it’s all going to turn out before taking the first steps, and instead, grabbing hold of the idea that a big part of the joy of the work is being surprised by what happens after you just dive in and try something.

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