WHAT IS THE ABUNDANT VILLAGE?
I’m very lucky in my neighborhood in Austin, TX to have a close network of neighbors who not only enjoy each other’s company, but also truly help and support each other in all sorts of ways. With our friendly little community, we saw a unique opportunity to take what we were already doing and crank it up a notch, creating something that’s both extremely practical and money-saving, but also a feel-good community builder at the same time. And this is how we birthed…The Abundant Village.
Consumerism has hit an all-time high and people are waking up and realizing this lifestyle is not only wasteful, it’s also unsustainable. So instead of letting these disposable goods pile up in our landfills, what would happen if we activated the local economy that already exists within our own community? If we shared our talents, services, tools and knowledge with each other in an accessible, frequent and friendly way?
The mission for The Abundant Village is to act like a true village… where we help and support our neighbors in every way, streamline expenses and decrease wastes, spread goodwill, get creative and have fun. It’s all about connecting people’s needs in an efficient, respectful way.
There are 3 aspects to this concept:
There are so many products we have around our homes, like ladders, leaf blowers, pressure washers, landscape tools, tire pumps, printers, chargers, bouncy houses, games, bikes, you name it, that many would be happy to share if we only knew someone else had a temporary need for them.
So how do we connect those needs with what people are willing to share? We create a “SHARE” file where each member can add things they own that they’re willing to share as needed. Then, when “Neighbor A” needs a ladder, she can quickly check the file to see who might have one. If she doesn’t see it there, she can easily post a request on the main page to find one.
Most people have really talented folks in their community that they don’t even know about! Let’s create a file with all of the services and goods our neighbors have to offer. Off hand I can think of people in my hood who are handymen, accountants, interior designers, photographers, technical wizards, personal trainers, seamstresses, wellness experts, life coaches, essential oil distributors, artists, exceptional bakers, cooks, personal shoppers, notaries, calligraphy artists, etc. And let’s not forget babysitters and pet sitters! I know I’m not even scratching the surface here.
What are you good at that other people need?
People can choose to support each other however feels best – cash, barter or trade. Every transaction will be unique and handled directly, cutting out the middle man. Once we see what everyone has to offer, we might find opportunities for barter that never even occurred to us before. For example, I could offer a coaching session in exchange for a custom cake, or maybe some babysitting, or technical assistance. This is where we can get really creative and have some fun.
This one’s pretty simple. Recently I heard someone say, “If something doesn’t bring you joy, even if it’s of great monetary or sentimental value, then it’s time to allow it to go to its rightful owner where it can be truly appreciated.” It feels good to purge and know that it’s going to make someone else happy to receive it. ♡
So many of us already do this, but I see this happening on an even broader scale in a “pay-it-forward” kind of way…with clothes, shoes, toys and random furniture/equipment. Offer up whatever no longer serves you on this site. And don’t forget to post what you need. The good karma will kick in. What goes around comes around. ♡
This initiative will be a work in progress that will require creativity, common sense, cooperation and generosity of spirit. But the possibilities are endless and I think we can create a new paradigm here that is innovative, sustainable and a lot of fun. I can’t wait to see how we grow together!
There are no strings attached. This is a WIN/WIN/WIN situation. Just think, not only will we all save money, but contributing members will also feel connected, seen and valued. And there may even be a few less landfills and anti-depressant prescriptions in the process.
Let’s get to know our neighbors and help make the world a better place.
To join The Abundant Village, search Facebook to see if one already exists in your neighborhood. If not, start one. It’s free and easy. Just grab the content provided on this page to explain the concept and start building your own community abundance today!