New Community Project
Launched in January 2015, our work in Starksboro, Vermont brings New Community Project’s mission to the New England region. NCP has had a Sustainable Living Center in Harrisonburg, VA since 2006.
The New England Sustainable Living Center is an experiential homestead that combines sustainable living practices with outreach and community building to promote a more peaceful world.
The center features a variety of programs and workshops including organic agriculture, ecological forestry, and low energy/carbon appropriate technologies.
A maple sugaring operation on-site provides visitors and members in the community the opportunity to learn about land-based sustainable cottage industries.
Interns and volunteers play a key role in carrying out the work in
Vermont during the "growing season" from late spring to early fall.
Room (in a hand-crafted yurt), board (including lots of fresh produce - and maple syrup) and a modest stipend (as needed) are provided for interns; anyone who joins in can count on the chance to do good work and have good conversations in the company of good people.
Day-visitors are always welcome as well. If possible, be in touch in advance to arrange a visit.
Take a look - Daisy's video of her excellent summer intern adventure in Vermont!
The northeast program is coordinated by Pete Antos-Ketcham, who is joined by neighbors, community members, and a growing list of volunteers and supporters from area schools, colleges, and organizations throughout the region.
The Sustainable Living Center is a residential community working to address the issues of climate change, resource depletion, and social justice through education, on-site demonstrations, and collaborative projects with those in need in our local and global community.
NCP’s goal is to link sustainable living practices and social justice concerns as the foundation for community building and peacemaking. The site demonstrates and experiments in permaculture design, organic gardening techniques, energy efficiency and conservation, small scale renewable energy, low ecological/carbon foot print, water conservation and reuse, appropriate technologies, and landscape regeneration. Some site features include:
Fruit and nut tree crop
Wood heating and cooking
Annual and perennial gardens
Maple syrup production
Our site is inspired by the principles of permaculture and agroecology and our work focuses on solutions to ecological and societal challenges with these systems as a foundation. Based on patterns and processes of ecological systems, permaculture is the art and science of creating healthy and resilient human environments abundant in food, water, shelter, energy, and community.
NCP coordinates a Food Share program that assists dozens of foot-insecure families every week. Food is grown in our Food Justice gardens, and we reclaim out-dated food from local grocery stores.
We also organize a firewood assistance program that provides fuel to families in need during Vermont's frigid winters.
Providing critical support for all these efforts are Resident Stewards/interns. NCP provides room (a hand-crafted yurt) and board (including fresh garden produce), and a small stipend (as needed) for those willing to commit for 10 weeks or more. Shorter-term volunteers and visitors are always welcomed.
Pete Antos-Ketcham coordinates the program in the northeast out of our New England Sustainable Living Center in Starksboro, VT. Pete has a degree in Environmental Studies and has spent many years working with organizations designing and managing energy efficient buildings.
575 Ruby Brace Road
Starksboro, VT 05487
Along with continued on-going support from the NCP network around the country, here in Vermont we have been very grateful to receive both financial and in-kind support from the following businesses, organizations, and foundations to support our Sustainable Living Center's work in 2020. These include:
International Paper Foundation (Ticonderoga Mill)
Energy Futures Group
Middlebury Natural Foods Co-Op
Ben and Jerry’s Foundation
United Way of Addison County
Harris and Frances Block Foundation
New England Grassroots Environment Fund
Community Bank N.A.
First Baptist Church of Starksboro
The United Church of Hinesburg
The Congregational Church of Charlotte (UCC)
Neighbor Helping Neighbor/Community Church of Huntington
VT Integrated Architecture
Red House Inc.
And we'd like to thank all of our partners who help us on the ground (in the gardens, at our weekly Food Share Program, and with our Emergency Heating and Weatherization Assistance Program). These include:
The Town of Starksboro
The Starksboro Town Food Shelf
The Starksboro Energy Committee
The United Church of Hinesburg and the Congregational Church of Charlotte (UCC) Youth Groups
St. Michael’s College
With all this support we were able to produce a thousand pounds of produce to donate to our Food Share Program, purchase an energy efficient chest freezer, expand the Starksboro Community Garden adding 2,900 square feet of new growing space, complete a new 12x15 greenhouse, add a roof and rainwater collection tank on our composting system for our irrigation system, and constructed a Little Free Pantry to provide 24/7 discrete food assistance to our community. Food Share, which began in 2014, operates every Sunday year round and currently serves 120 people a month from seventeen area towns.