Nicholas Vergatos, Grace Farm (Noblesville, Indiana)
Grace Farm is a group of friends, with an average age of about 35, who have been exposed to community living through a few different experiences and have been motivated to potentially start our own cohousing community. The 10 founding members of Grace Farm have experienced community living most notably from our time at Bethlehem Farm, an intentional community in the mountains of West Virginia with a mission of service and outreach to the people of Appalachia. Each of us have experienced communal living at the Farm in different ways and have been motivated to come together and start our own cohousing community in Noblesville, which is a northern suburb of Indianapolis, Indiana.
We are currently in a fact finding sort of stage trying to determine what other communities have used for funding and financial solutions and whether its best to use a developer or finance everything ourselves and what kind of ownership models have worked for others in the past when purchasing land. Grace Farm is exploring various financial models and working to select one to help us purchase property that will allow us the flexibility to grow our community the way envision. We are also establishing our governing structure and working to formalize new member orientation and other various processes. The current goal is to have our first community members living in a cohousing community by the end of 2020. To assist with this goal, one of our founding members will be attending the National Cohousing Conference in Nashville. We are looking forward to connecting with other established and forming cohousing communities across the country as well as gather valuable information on the development and funding for a new cohousing community.
We are a diverse group of friends with various backgrounds and experiences who have been touched by community living and the positive impacts it has on our lives and on our individual personalities and behaviors. We often say, in community, we are inspired to be better than we are individually. It is our hope that through Grace Farm, we can not only create a community that will be a model for sustainable and community living for its members, but also for the greater Noblesville population. Noblesville is like many American suburban cities with much of its residents living in large subdivisions and isolated from their neighbors. We hope that Grace Farm will be a model for a different way of life and introduce the idea of community living to many who are unfamiliar with a different way to live. While cohousing in America has seen encouraging growth across the country, Grace Farm hopes to be the first established cohousing community in Central Indiana.
If you would like to know more information about us you can like us on Facebook at “Grace Farm Noblesville” or contact us at gracefarmcoho [at] gmail [dot] com.