True sense of belonging is healing the world
The beginning of my ESC experience in Greece carries a seed for collective lifestyle evolution
There is a feeling coming from a place in the middle of your chest, that peaceful relaxation throughout all your body, the beautiful quiten coming with your breathe.. I'm experiencing this state of being, coming and going like ocean waves, since I started travelling four years ago.
And here I am, once again, back to Greece. I have the possibility to take part of an ESC volunteering program called "Sustainable Synergies" that will roll, for me, during the next two months. The location is quite spectacular: it's a suburb of Athens called Nea Makri, stretched along the east coast facing the sea from one side and protected from the hills in the other, giving it the natural environment of a village and the possibility of inclusion in the city life. A second spring welcomed me!! The climate is still very enjoyable, with a strong sun up in the sky that leads me to take swims in the sea after work! Much different from the cold autumn nights I've left behind in north Italy where I come from.
I feel very grateful to be here, now. It's such a blessing to have the opportunity of spending this time collaborating with the project called "Nea Guinea" that hosts me and Vega, my Norwegian companion with who I work and share the house. We're both happy to have found each other and we already became good friends.
There's a big part of this wellbeing coming from the cure dedicated to us from Kostas and Fotini, our two references for the experience, who have spent much energy to make clear all the values, agreements and purposes behind this ESC.
The project has been running since 2013 and it's one of the pioneers in all Greece dedicatig to this field. The aim is raising awareness on environmental and social challenges within the local community and that of the main city of Athens, as well as promoting active engagement in sustainable and regenerative practices with positive environmental and social impact. Issues of sustainable food production, cultural and environmental regeneration, renewable energy systems and creative activism, are address in different ways through practical hands-on experience and competences dissemination.
There's a strong need of belonging to a community behind all of this process, which is at the very core of most of the problems we're facing nowadays. It's about building a sense of cooperation instead of separation, being witness of the possibility to create a new way of living based on a more conscious approach to meet our needs, singularly and commonly. This is what we're creating here, a physical and an abstract landscape where the change can find the conditions to flourish.
I feel being out of my comfort zone, exposed to different realities and issues, is the best I can do, for myself and for the community, especially in this period of crisis without any precedents. It is not a case that during these time of unimaginable restrictions, with huge limitations of personal freedom, society is striving to find ways for self-determinate their goods production processes, in order to be less and less dependent from the current globalised economy system. It is just in this way, getting step by step as local as possible, that a community (I would say the Greek one had a huge capacity for doing this considered the environmental richness) can walk towards true indipendency and resilience.
From a situation of emergency something needs to emerge; in order to make this happen, we need to take our own responsibilities and "be the change we want to see in the world".
 Charles Eisenstein, "The more beautiful world our hearts know it is possible'
 Mahatma Gandhi