Who We Are:
Hello! Our names are Gil and Ella and we are the co-founders of Rustling Roots. Rustling Roots is an education center for ecological living focused on science, nature connection, and community, currently offering programs to youth (middle school - college). Through our varied programs, participants engage in experiential learning, immerse themselves in our community and encounter proof of concept that living ecologically can be comfortable, beautiful, and exciting.
Sustainability as we most often hear it discussed emphasizes either deep lifestyle sacrifices or superficial changes in consumer choices. We don’t think either one of these sounds very uplifting or hopeful. If that’s all “sustainability” means to most people, in fact, it can lead to more apathy, denial, and disconnection from truly—and enjoyably!—sustainable solutions.
At Rustling Roots, we believe living closely with nature and each other is our greatest human source of wealth and satisfaction, providing abundance of social connection, the opportunity to work directly with nature’s gifts, and supporting and rebuilding our ecosystems’ health.
Rustling Roots currently offers an educational program with three main branches: science, nature-connection, and community.
Our science branch offers interactive science models to help understand healthy ecosystems as well as the causes of ecological disruption. It also offers human-based solutions to mitigate climate change and rebuild our ecosystems.
Our nature-connection branch offers 15 acres of forest and trails, sit-spots, journal writing, shelter building, plant and mushroom identification, fire-making and other primitive skills programs.
The community branch offers participants the opportunity to share in low-impact communal living (Rustling Roots is on the site of Cambia Intentional Community). As part of this, participants learn about the structure and function of intentional communities and their contributions to sustainable ecosystems.
We’ve Come So Far Already!
Thanks to the generosity of donors and volunteers, we’ve already created an interactive walking museum trail with hands-on models that show land-use and carbon footprints, natural and alternative building technologies, pond ecology, water filtration, solar technologies, and biospheric relationships.
Over the past year, we have also had great success leading programs for local homeschooling groups, plus adults excited about low-impact living.
This past Labor Day weekend we hosted our largest program to over 50 participants! It included an in-depth tour of our museum exhibits, workshops in natural building, and yurt-building.
How You Can Help:
It is time to ramp up our efforts! In order to make our programs accessible to school groups year round, we need to build a classroom. This classroom will be a dry place, out of the elements to bring adults and children at the end of their museum trailwalk. This space will serve as a fully-equipped classroom and a dining room, and warm, cozy discussion space.
The classroom will be a log-framed round building of approximately 800 square feet and it will be open to the air with the exception of bug screening around its circumference. We will create an area for craft tables, a small pedal-powered tool shop and several science exhibits.
-Structural materials: $3000
-Human powered tool shop: $1200
-Educational Materials : $400
-Permiting & Infrastructural Improvements : $200
We need you to help us build this classroom! We have school groups excited and ready to come here for field trips, and we want to be ready for them!