Sustainability Institute & Lynedoch EcoVillage

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Sustainability Institute & Lynedoch EcoVillage

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The Sustainability Institute is an international living and learning centre located outside the South African university town of Stellenbosch. Surrounded by the breathtaking beauty of the Cape's towering mountains and rooted in an agricultural community needing to break free from its' racial past, the Sustainability Institute provides a space for people to explore an approach to creating a more equitable society that lives in a way that sustains rather than destroys the eco-system within which all society is embedded.

Founded in 1999, the Sustainability Institute provides residential accommodation for visiting writers, artists, activists, volunteers and scholars, and a learning space for participants in the Institute's various educational programmes.

The Institute and the Lynedoch Primary School share a large ecologically designed building. This is why children seem so present in the daily life of the Institute. After the chattering and giggling children have gathered in the hall for the morning assembly, the Principal leads them in a prayer that often starts with a word of thanks for the beauty and wonder of the Western Cape's unique ecosystem which includes the grand mountains peaks, the exceptional diversity of the 'fynbos' plant kingdom, the ancient history of local settlement, and the wild and windy coast. Although the children come from some of the poorest families in the country, the Principal reminds them of the promise of a better life through education. He offers them the possibility of hope. And this, in essence, is what sustainability is all about.

Lynedoch EcoVillage, which is situated in the same area, is a socially and economically viable mixed community which is centred around a learning precinct located outside the South African university town of Stellenbosch. It showcases practical and working examples of an ecologically designed urban system that uses local replicable technologies.

021 881 3196


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