Village Earth

Village Earth Remembers John Ragnar Long – August 23, 1973 – November 20, 2017

Village Earth honors the passing of another member of our family, John R. Long who, after a long and spirited battle, succumbed to cancer November 20th, 2017. John first joined Village Earth as a volunteer starting in 1999. As a volunteer, John engaged Village Earth as a sponsor of the second annual Rocky Mountain Sustainable Living Fair which served as an annual focal point for the local sustainability community and showcased sustainable technologies and projects from around the world. The first fair was organized by Students at Colorado State University. After that time, the fair would be organized by the Rocky Mountain Sustainable Living Association each year until 2015. In 2000 John completed Village Earth’s flagship in-person training “Participatory Practices for Sustainable Development (PPSD). Connections made during this training lead John to spearhead a partnership between Village Earth and the International Rescue Committee on a large-scale cluster development program in the southern region of Azerbaijan from 2001 to 2003. John worked diligently as Village Earth’s director of development but was clearly more comfortable ‘out in the community’ working on the Sustainable Living Fair or innovating in the burgeoning biofuels market, eventually co-founding Blue Sun Biodiesel Fuels and other sustainability focused organizations like Zero Hero, Fat Pig Society, and Biodiesel for Bands. John was a true leader who inspired others and supported the growth and development of those around him. He was a major catalyst for change in the Fort Collins community and beyond and we all feel a deep sense of loss with his passing but his legacy and spirit lives on through all the people he inspired and all the institutions he helped to form!

Upcoming Courses in the Village Earth/CSU Online Certificate Program in Community-Based Development

Fall I Session

GSLL 1518 – Community-Based Food Systems

During this five week course, you will learn about various approaches to building community-based food systems and movements for food justice around the world. Together, we will evaluate successful efforts at food system relocalization and the protection of community food resources, as well as the factors that threaten these efforts.

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Summer II Session

GSLL 1501 – Approaches to Community Development

This course provides a framework for community development based on a participatory, bottom-up, multi-sector model. Various approaches have been used in community development with varying degrees of success. One approach that has consistently demonstrated effectiveness is the Village Earth model based on participatory practices.

Through personal and structural empowerment, the objectives of economic well-being, environmental sustainability, and socio-cultural vitalization can be met. By looking at an overview of the entire development process and using case studies, this course will prepare participants to work in the field of community development and illuminate how all of the development efforts fit together to support the overall goal of sustainability.

Upon completion of this course participants will be able to:

Compare different development approaches and evaluate their effectiveness.
Understand the basic principles that underlie sustainable development.
Incorporate participatory practices into community development activities
Design a development project based on the Village Earth model
Who should take this course? This course is suited for people who are interested in community development and work or plan to work in this field. This includes people working or volunteering at NGOs, NPOs, governmental organizations, without border organizations, or missionary organizations. In addition, people involved in funding community development projects benefit from this course.

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