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    Do you believe in fate? I do, which may make me crazy to many of you. But I need to tell you why. It might make you a believer too.
     I’ve always been a “cloud thinker,” juggling more than one idea at a time. At one point I thought I might have ADHD, because I was always starting things and forgetting to finish them.  Eventually I learned that I was not alone in that trait, but that many people didn’t understand it.  That diversity of interest once earned me an award from my library for having the “most diverse set of interests indicated books checked out.” I didn’t even know the award existed.
    When I discovered farming and the need to teach people how their food is raised, I found a way to put all my interests together. But then I received a severe head injury while walking a pregnant goat, and that changed my ability to focus. While I still have very diverse interests, I have to see things through to the end, or my brain doesn’t let go of them.

     A few years ago, while working with our local Agricultural Commission, the idea of starting a sustainability center came up; a place where people could make saleable goods without having to pay for all the needed inspections and tests that go along with rural living and urban rule making.  When the group asked me where I would put it I said “In a dream world, I would put it in that old riding stable, but we can’t afford that.”
    It turns out that the riding stable was in foreclosure, and the price was more reasonable than we thought, but still out of our range.  But as we looked at it we discovered more things that made it “meant to happen.”  It was on town water and sewer, so no need for  septic and well tests.  It was situated ideally for solar power, with long sloping roofs to the south.  It sits adjacent to the old mill pond that could be rebuilt for micro-hydro, and because it was a pre-existing use we weren’t inhibited by Conservation Commission regulations.  We checked out for endangered species with the US Fish and Wildlife and the State of MA Fish and Game Dept, and there were none.  We looked at flood plains, no problem.  Surely there must be a problem.
    Well, there was the case of the price, but it was dropped from $450,000 to $425,000, which made it more appealing to competitors. We had to keep looking for a way.  We were told over and over that the soils were contaminated, so we looked into it, and sure enough there were two sets of soil tests done in the past 10 years, and they passed both with mild restrictions we could work around.
    The buildings are in disrepair, and there is a problem with an access bridge, but the bridge is sound, only the railings are rickety.  A building inspection was in order, so we found an inspector who was well respected ; and the result was, there are some issues, primarily the roof on the antique building, but the the frame and the bricks are in remarkable shape.  Utilities need upgrading and there is a STRONG need for landscaping and aesthetic work, but the space would work for what we’re proposing. If we could afford it.
    We’ve been working to raise the funds for nearly two years. We discovered that there is an emergency grant that would match up to $100,000, if we could raise it. And if we could get the credit union down to $200,000in asking price. We took on a lease for an empty school building, to have a temporary space to prove ourselves out, and though some people are happy there, the true needs of the kitchen and sustainability programs cannot happen there. As relationships were starting to fray with the town and the staff, we got word yesterday that the price has now been dropped again. This is the fourth time, at least since the price was dropped, and it is now down to below $200,000!  This is destined to happen.
    So why should you care?  Because our project is really a national model.   It’s about people identifying a need, finding a solution, working to educate about that problem, and addressing it from within our region.  There is no corporate godfather. The government can help, but we have to show that we can do this.  Our business plan indicates that we can, with people from all over the region using, and learning from us. Buy serving a diverse group of interests, from cooks to artists, dog trainers to families with autism, consumers to producers, old to young, we can do it, and help a lot of people at the same time!
    We want to show people that it is possible.  We can create a sustainable local economy, healthier community and enhance our environment and quality of life, with just people power.  Please, visit see how you “Fit In,” at our Indiegogo campaign,  www.indiegogo.com/NCSCJigsaw. There are links to our website, Youtube videos, and other information about us.  We are 501(c)(3), so donations are tax deductible. We’re not asking for a large amount from people. We’re asking for small amounts from a lot of people.  Please check it out, spread the word, and help us make this project come to reality. Its fated to be. Who can argue with that?  Thanks

Originally posted to hamesfarmer on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 07:28 AM PDT.

Also republished by Community Fundraisers.

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Comment Preferences

  •  May I republish this to Community Fundraisers? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, whaddaya

    This is unlike our typical diary, but it will spread the word a bit farther.  Good luck with your big project, it is quite a vision and well worth sharing.

    If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever.

    by weck on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 08:14:14 AM PDT

  •  I believe in free will. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, whaddaya, SoCalHobbit, FG, weck

    Good things don't just "happen," and "happenstance" is not a stance.

    All the progress you've made on your sustainability center occurred because you and others took deliberate actions:

    You made choices, you made efforts, you persuaded people, organized people, did your homework and your hard work, and kept inspiration nurtured with perspiration.  

    Building stuff is good.  Give yourselves credit where credit is due.

    Nothing is as revolutionary as a working example.

    "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

    by G2geek on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 08:51:07 AM PDT

    •  I'm not saying it would happen without us. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      G2geek

      I'm just feasting in the gratification when things move in a little bit more positive direction. I need to keep pushing things forward, but it's awful nice when the finish lines move closer.  Thanks.

  •  I wonder. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    weck

    It seems like I've been fighting fate and prankish circumstance (Heroesworld, Fun Rockets, etc.) all my life. It kept telling me that I going to be just a loser stuck on a pig farm. I finally had to do something over the top with acing "the unpassable test" in my 40s before I got a decent break in life.

    "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

    by Stude Dude on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 09:30:12 AM PDT

    •  I often what (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude

      a city girl from Michigan had to travel to five different states, make horse tack, learn about hydropower and get involved with advocacy in order to live on a goat farmer. Now I know why.  It's all coming into play with NCSC. Now we just need to raise that money to purchase the buildings.

  •  Do I have evidence of Fate? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    weck

    Nope.

    Free University and Health Care for all, now. -8.88, -7.13

    by SoCalHobbit on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 09:35:13 AM PDT

    •  I Guess it only matters if I do. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      weck

      But my point is that some people here have been very critical of this project. It seems a little too Pollyannish for some. It's too conservative for some and too "out there" for others. But I know that it is meant to happen, not by the generosity of a few donors, but by the power and generosity of thousands.  I just need people to see that power of people, and spread the word. Every dollar counts.

  •  Believing in personal fate (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    weck

    Requires putting yourself at the center of the universe.

    the fact that you're right is nothing more than interesting

    by Egg on Wed Jun 06, 2012 at 10:29:55 AM PDT

    •  Oh I hope Not. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      weck

      Whenever I start looking at the world from that viewpoint I start feeling really entitled and important. To me, it's what I can do to help that makes me important, not what they can do for me.  I matter, but I matter more because I look for ways to empower others. That's how I've made it through the very many tough times in my life.

      But sometimes things just fall into place, little miracles I've called them, that reaffirm my belief that I'm doing the right thing. This isn't a "little miracle," but it is vital one, for us as a family, a community and a nation. I just hope others can see the role that it can fill.

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