...Briefly: A loose network of people interested in promoting a more sustainable way of life!
.......Over the hills, through the woods, in an remote area of Olomouc region that's where you'll find the little Hamlet of Bouzov Svojanov; a 600 year old village with a present-day population of only 20 local Czech people. It is also here that you will find a 10 hectare organic certified land trust owned by the non-profit organisation PermaLot and managed as a model for rural sustainability and in doing so seek to return life to an area almost abandoned by the modern migration to the city.
Not far from the landtrust is where you'll find a slightly larger village, Bouzov Podoli, which is where the administrative center for PermaLot lies, along with many of the activities such as public education, courses, political work, creation of a school for natural building and a modern family house demonstrating natural building and renewable energy.
PermaLot was established as a Czech civic association in the year 2000. In 2001 we purchased 10 hectares of forest, meadows, fields and orchards which we are converted to certified organic and managed following permaculture principles. In 2005 we started managing additional 7,5 hectares of fields in a nearby village, where two central volunteers bought an old run-down farm, and rent out facilities to PermaLot. A majority of our activites are of an information/educational, political and networking scope. It basically all started with 'just a dream', however:
Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.
-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe/David Brower
The 7 year development (Written May 2008) has led to the following tangible results:
-A network of 5 organic farmers managing the total of 17, 5 hectares. Some are managed as multi-functional orchard with crops growing between the rows of newly planted old varities of frut and nut trees, others for Bio-Dynamic vegetables, some for pasture of sheep and pony, some for organic strawberries/onions and so on... central is the focus on bio-diversity and permaculture principles.
-A small certified commercial kitchen incubator for production of final products such as jam, spreads and breads.
-A micro organic shop (5m2)
-A mobile juice/pasteurizing set-up, allowing us to finalize our products and make 'juice in a box' for the locals from their own fruit.
-A rustic camp site for 35 people with 4 tee-pee's and 2 large tents, toilets, solar showers, drinking water etc.
-A series of various equipment to handle both the agriculture work, the building and the administrative work
...And we're quite close to opening:
-A demonstration house for natural building and renewable energy.
-A daycare based on forest kindergarten and Waldorf pedagogie
-An free-time educational center
But all of this you can read more about in the other folders... We save this folder for the more boring formal stuff, which never-the-less is the essentials of PermaLot, the glue which makes the whole thing stick together...
First and foremost we have our mission statement which all of our decisions have to relate to:
PermaLot's Mission Statement
PermaLot seek to recreate the sustainability of the existing traditional rural region surrounding Bouzov, by facilitating an alternative economic base for the area while providing a living example of sustainable living, natural building, alternative energy and waste management; an Ecovillage.
This vision is based on the following core elements:
* To stimulate the final processing of local products within the microregion
* To facilitate alternative education, with an emphasis on the environment and language
* Low impact Ecotourism
The following Permaculture elements will be used as a guide:
1. Create systems that produce more than they use.
2. Work with nature, not against it.
3. Cooperation rather than competition.
"An Ecovillage is an urban or rural community whose members try to provide a high quality lifestyle without taking more from the Earth than they give back. Ecovillages attempt to integrate a supportive social environment with a low-impact way of life. To achieve these aims, Ecovillages typically build on various combinations of three dimensions: Community, ecology and spirituality." (The Global Ecovillage Network)
We envision that the community will be centered around acting locally and thinking globally. In doing so the project will seek to be an example of the Agenda 21 vision