By Fernando Ausín-Gómez
Photos by Leila Dregger
Reporting from GEN+20
(Global Ecovillage Network 20-Year Anniversary Summit)
FINDHORN, Scotland — One of the world’s oldest ecovillages, this legendary community is host of the Global Ecovillage Network (GEN)’s 20th anniversary Summit. Founded 52 years ago, it is a modern spiritual and educational campus on multiple acres in the northern tip of Scotland, United Kingdom, sprayed by the waves of the Nordic Sea.
From July 5 – 11th, hundreds of leaders, founders, and promoters of ecovillages and sustainable settlements across the world are gathered here to celebrate the Network’s success—and pave way for its next steps. In our rapidly changing world that evermore suggests the need for ecological regeneration, energetic descent, permaculture practices and sustainability solutions, GEN+20 presents this Summit to reach global, grassroots-based solutions.
Supported by the Gaia Trust and other philanthropic organizations, members from dozens of countries across the world traveled thousands of miles to represent their projects, regions, countries and continents in five categories: GEN Europe, GEN Africa, GEN Oceania and Asia, NextGEN and its cadre of worldwide youth leaders, and the Latin American branch, CASA.
Representatives for each category presented past achievements and future goals, each one colored by its unique cultural particularities that jointly paint a diverse and inclusive global picture. Europe leads the way with its philanthropic capabilities and generous sustenance for the group; Africa provides an array of traditional, social and spiritual values that glue the network together; Oceania and Asia define the purpose of the summit through their comunal strategies, grassroots initiatives and social reconciliation programs; the youth grow on multiple levels due to their increased interconnectedness; and Latin America fills the hearts of the globe with love and inspiration.
Scotland’s generous hospitality and beautiful scenarios welcome the global tribe of visionaries and peacemakers warmly. It is quickly apparent that jetlag stands no chance in the minds and hearts of these warriors of the rainbow. They all know the necessity and timeliness of their work; it’s finally time to unite and strategize the common path to follow…
To follow the proceedings of the GEN +20 international summit, click here for a live streaming link.
Fernando Ausín-Gómez is an educator, writer and nomadic healer based currently in Amatlán, Morelos, México. He is one of two Mexico representatives for CASA (Consejo de Asentimientos Sustentables de las Americas), the Latin American branch of the Global Ecovillage Network.