San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

‘Intentional Communities’ To Stage Gathering

A four-day gathering near the Río Machuca in San Mateo, Alajeula will promote sustainable communities and ecological living for commune members from throughout Costa Rica.

This first national meeting of intentional communities, the name for communes where shared activities and arrangements create a supportive network, will take place from June 21-23. The event coincides with the summer solstice. Attendees will participate in activities relating to permaculture, agriculture, ecology and biodiversity, with an added focus on communal living and arts.

The Harmony Group, a movement that promotes ecological awareness in Costa Rica and the rest of Central America, is organizing the gathering. “We have to make this network work,” said Christian Carranza, one of the event coordinators. “We have to achieve a successful community. And then we have to find a manner to make changes together.”

More than 50 communes, including 14 indigenous villages, have been invited to participate.

These include communes from the northern Caribbean region of Costa Rica to the south’s OsaPeninsula. Tacotal, the commune hosting the event, sits close enough to the river that participants can swim in natural pools.

For the inaugural gathering, Carranza said the emphasis is on bringing together local communities. However, he believes that these meetings will have a more international flavor in the future. Maintaining a peaceful and harmonious relationship with the environment is a universal issue, and, according to Carranza, that concern should attract people who respect and care about nature and who want to understand how to live more peacefully with their surroundings.

–Matt Levin

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