Event: How to bring back human potential to rural areas - ‘you need to offer them more than just a plot of land’

@noemi Count me in.

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I live in rural Vlaams-Brabant where there is a whole lot of commercial farming of apples pears maize sugar beet etc. Sadly, only a small amount of organic agriculture, and lots of annoying pesticides and large modern farming vehicles. There is some new building going on, but also many derelict buildings around. Though I might not be active in making it happen, I would love to see rural regeneration around here.


Cool, signed you up! What are you up to these days @thom_stewart?

@jvangeyte and @lylycarrillo work in Flanders and could probably tell you more about some agri projects there for sustainability…?

With my other company Beanlife we are working with Flemish soybeans produced by local farmers and are seeing a systematic effort to support organic farming, but we don’t yet know about how sustainable this particular crop is for the lands, and the LCA of locally produced legumes. They are also trying to produce chickpeas and quinoa, and again, same risks.

Are you growing things yourself @asimong? or do you own your land…? and how come you moved from the UK? I forgot the most important question!

Hey again Noemi

Today I’m inducting staff for the mental health cafe project you may remember from ideation stage. See:


At about 40 mins in, visual prototype.

More relevant to this thread, been working on establishing Community Land Trusts in Ireland - currently looking at getting baseline stats for a Midlands site, on an ecological regeneration slant?

Pretty influenced by Kulturland Coop and Stiftung Trias, got some support through SHICC, currently moving into test site stage with it all.


@noemi i am in! :slight_smile:

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Very curious about this. Would you be willing to share a little about your experience before (here) or during the event (live), for about 10 minutes?
I think having good case studies will go a long way to help us underdstand what models are available.

Mainly, the questions would be:

  • Who is participating and how are local authorities involved?
  • Are there urban dwellers involved, and if so, what is the value added for them?
  • Is food being produced: by who and for whom?
  • How someone from another country can set up similar Trusts, where land regulations could be different? What are the major roadblocks to figure out before starting?

Or anything else you found crucial,

Will send a reminder next week, but before that: Vlad and everyone - please block the date in your calendar!

This session will be from 18:00 to 19:30 maximum, so a little shorter than the last time :slight_smile:

I’m happy to join the conversation.

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Hi there, last sunday i was visiting a social garden here in Parma, in the northern part of Italy, where members should garden a spot of it and keep it open to the public at least once per season for some activities, mainly cultural. At the same time i’m participating in a A Study Group for Restoring Planetary Health and Avoiding Human Extinction called “Earth Regenerators” (https://earth-regenerators.mn.co/), whose goal is to advocate for bioregions. I think that taking action in cities and towns with youngsters especially, might create a fruitful ground to inspire gardeners, but also farmers and self standing communities in rural areas. In Italy there are many little ghost towns (borghi), some even medieval on the mountains, or abandoned ruined farms in the country side. Financial aids and public support -as far as i know- are not so well developed, although a transition from high intensive coltures to saustainable and bio agricolture are growing year by year.

For instance, a group of citizens are taking care of another garden in a far side of Parma called Picasso Food Forest, inspired to urban forests and part of a project called Fruttorti (http://www.fruttortiparma.it/). The idea is to develop projects by a community of volunteers and experts to rebalance and connect people to nature. Also students, migrants and researchers that come from other sides of Italy and Europe visit often the project and join temporarily the community. See you on the 23rd!


Thank you for sharing this @federico_monaco! And good to hear from you, it’s been a while,

What you describe I believe happens a lot here and there: for example, I myself when I was part of a local community supported agriculture group with urbanites getting their veggie baskets weekly had to work closely with the farmers to jump in when their crops were affected by weather events i.e. we did a mobilising action to go ‘save the tomatoes’ because the farmers were lacking labour. The issue I see is that these (my and your examples too) fall more in the category civil society: it’s based on organisations doing community mobilisations, intermediating between citizens and farmers, and this rests on subsidies, public or private - even though there was the lucrative advantage for the farmers whose income depended on this group of consumers.

But still, this goes to tell that the civil society and public funding play a key role.

Where do you see opportunities for more economical benefits in your examples, if you think about entire rural communities being able to make a living out of their valuable work, caring for the environment and so on?


Hi @noemi,
I think new rural economy based on sustainability, resiliency, SLOC dynamics, and so on, be part of new ways to conceive values, not only standarides by money and what you might buy by it, but by so called “ecological transition” also good information, good quality of life, commons and “farming with nature”. Is just my opinion, but there is a missing link between urban and rural, as there is between public and private when it comes to agricolture. Going back to farming, or better going forward to farming in certain informed ways (a steampunk narrative perhaps) could foster the roles of farmers at the global level and connect solutions for pollution, climate change, global market, to small and local quality. Cities and citizens as consumers should boost such process perhaps.

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This is really the point that perhaps we should take on board during our event - the interconnections between our planet health and the food chain, and how the rural livelihoods could mediate that!

@Dragan_Jonic made a similar connection here between industrial plants built in rural areas and reviving local food - his approach is activism and working very closely with farmers to support them to cultivate in natural ways, and bank on the national tourism who starts to converge to an endangered rural area but also provides economic benefits to locals: How do we bring people back to rural areas and support local food production?

I am interested in participating.
Now I live in Warsaw in Poland but in future I think about moving to a rural area and become a farmer. Most likely I will do it with other people.

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I tried a couple of times to initiate something like this, and didn’t work. I’ll try again. Please count me in.


Welcome on board @Emblotka123, happy to have you in our community!

Can I ask you: what motivates you to start such a project? Is this something you think is becoming more attractive for people who live in cities in Poland?

To you and @Alessandro: w e will send the link to the Zoom event Monday morning!

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Ecological farming in Poland is made on a really small scale. I feel that there is a need to give people chance to have access to good quality food in a reasonable prices. Also alternatives to big supermarkets are needed like cooperatives, direct cooperations between farmers and customers.
Regarding living in the village it depends more on personal needs, awareness ect.
For me personally for my mental and physical health I need a quite place and being close to nature. I would like to live in a community where social relations are strong, focused on cooperation and mutual support. And being
surrounded by other people who have sensitivity to other people or creatures or the effect of their actions on the environment.
By my project I would like to show people that another structures than those offered by capitalist world and big organizations are possible.


I heard an interesting presentation a year or so ago about valuing land and the soil. Turns out that even if you do conventional economics properly, industrial farming looks like asset destruction. Laws definitely needed here!


count me in

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