We, Fostervillage, heal from our inherited fractured culture, affirm our interdependence, and model resilient social and ecological relations to foster the emergence of a new culture. We relearn old ways and co-create new ways of living together in community to become more fully human; to increase our capacity to practice, teach, demonstrate and learn the cycles that nourish ourselves and our land.
Over the past several years, we have developed a “household” consisting of 3 homes. We share the land on all 3 properties and utilize common indoor spaces in each home for the purposes the space seems most suited for. In this way, we often treat the homes as a single home and engage with each other more often than one might in similar co-housing community. We also share 5 meals per week, which connects us regularly through food.
We also have an organizing structure that helps us communicate effectively and allows us to collaboratively make decisions about how we will meet our needs and use the land & homes we live in. We meet weekly as a community in alternating “minds” (business) meetings and “heart-centered” meetings. Heart meetings allow space for our emotional support needs, connections with each other on a deeper level & for support in conflict resolution. The members of each home also meet to address ongoing unique issues to each house.
In our free time (we don’t get paid for this!), we give back to our community in many ways. Some of our members:
Foster Village is an urban intentional community in the Heart of Foster, in Portland, Oregon. 11 members live in 3 homes (2 century-old homes & a 3-yr old strawbale home) and nearly 1/3 of an acre of land on what looks like a single plot.
We share many weekly meals, care for annual and perennial gardens, keep chickens, ducks, cats & bees. We make collective decisions on how to use our land, how to govern ourselves and to provide for our collective needs.
In addition, we radiate our gifts & talents out into the world by actively coordinating projects in our local neighborhood schools & organizations (see the How We Live tab). We also share our unique model with others in order to inspire and assist in the creation of more urban communities, no matter the form they take.
The story of Foster Village begins more than a decade ago with a single community house purchased by a couple of natural builders. With their 1912 craftsman and a 60×100’ lot on which to practice their craft, Lydia, Sukita and Jeff (a close friend) made space for the embryo of an urban community homestead to take shape. Asphalt and gravel was ripped up, plants were set into ground that had been deprived of roots for many decades and the landscape was re-envisioned.
In 2006, an adjacent lot & home became vacant and shortly thereafter the budding community evolved into two houses (with the purchase of another turn-of-the-century craftsman). As the community of friends and neighbors grew, so did the possibilities. A lot was divided and a small, environmentally conscious 3rd home was constructed (Multnomah County’s 1st permitted strawbale residence). Thus, the transformation from a community home to a Community of three houses was completed in the spring of 2010.
As the final utilities were buried and the sidewalk re-poured, an inscription confirmed to all, that this 1/3 acre urban community shared by 11 members had become Foster Village.