Gentle Harvest
Richard Kühnel
208-255 2440
richard@gentleharvest.org



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Inland Northwest Eco-Center
"Empowering individuals and communities to create sustainable ways of living."

INTRODUCTION
The Inland Northwest Eco-Center seeks to develop a sustainable bioregional culture that is highly self-reliant in providing for the needs of our community, like clean air, fresh water, healthy food, appropriate shelter, green energy and transportation, fair economy, alternative health care, community self-governance, inspiring and environmental responsible entertainment, arts and activities, independent media, person based action learning and teaching opportunities and meaningful livelihood. It seeks to establish systems to care for those in need, including our children, handicapped, ill and elders.  
The Eco-Center encourages to reconnect to the earth and the source of life to inform our actions and plans. It's approach seeks a non-political, non-religious and non-discriminatory way to  realize its goals. It understands itself as a center of promoting and supporting healing in a wide sense, for the individual, communities and the planet, curing 'dis-ease', locally, regionally and globally.
The Eco-Center's efforts are based on people coming together and working for the highest good of all. It seeks alternative ways to solve societal and economic issues. It works on establishing practices that are appropriate for our times to live in a peaceful, rich, vital and beautiful environment. It honors that everyone travels on their very own unique journey.

GOALS
Informational Resources
Provide informational resources that include books, videos, CD's, magazines, etc. on ecological sustainability for research and for purchase, as well as High Speed Internet access, viewing of audio visual materials and access to databases of specific interest, including plants, seeds, local expert directories, etc.
Create an online store and a local experts and projects directory.
Provide advice in all areas of sustainable living, including ecological farming, natural food production and processing, bio-fuels and other renewable energies, transportation, development of local sustainable businesses, building product selection and shelter design, event organization, appropriate use of technology, holistic planning and organization, biological water and sewage systems and more.
Creating a share a ride and share a space self-managed database and a local currency.
Events
Offer classes, workshops, presentations and activities in all areas of sustainable living, planning and design, like organic gardening, agriculture, natural building, Permaculture, land use design, local economy, community building, appropriate technology, energy independence, social systems, self-governance, indigenous skills and knowledge, and more.
Create an online self-managed calendar for sustainable event announcements and
organize Bioregional Congresses.
Seed Exchange
Develop a seed bank of local varieties for exchange.
Community Store and Businesses
Open a store that carries products that are made locally in a sustainable way, including groceries, tools, household products, plants,  crafts and a deli.
Form a community owned energy co-op, producing energy and a waste=food enterprise that utilizes natural resources currently discarded, burned or destroyed.
Develop a Green Map, open a green, reclaimed building material ware house, start a Save from Waste imitative and establish Local Transportation Alternatives like community cycles, bio-shuttle service and pedestrian advocay.
Model Projects
Create or transform existing land use into ecological designed model projects for different categories, including urban, suburban, rural, agricultural, administrative and industrial, etc.
Sandpoint 2020
Develop a roadmap to make Sandpoint sustainable by the year 2020.
Office Space
Establish an office in Sandpoint open to the public to support the goals of the Eco-Center and for discussions, group meetings and as an administrative center.
Volunteers
Host, train and teach volunteers to help and promote sustainable practices throughout the community.
Organizational Framework
Establish an organizational framework to ensure the continuous operation and financial resources of the Eco-Center.

HISTORY
The Inland Northwest Eco-Center has been established in Sandpoint, Idaho in 2003 to house, network, start and support sustainable projects in the region.
The Eco-Center had rented rooms in downtown Sandpoint until October 2005. During this time we had a resource library, a small book store, a green building material samples display, a seed exchange, high speed internet access and audio visual viewing stations. We also rented out office space to fitting organizations, held a number of classes, hosted meetings for diverse groups, started developing the front yard and distributed a monthly newsletter. All this was made possible by many individuals volunteering time, labor or donating materials and resources and by providing encouragement.
Due to changes in the ownership of the building where the Eco-Center had rented its office, we decided to vacate our space. We are currently looking for a new location to open again.

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