Earthville Institute, Switzerland

Earthville InstituteThe Earthville Network seeks to establish an Earthville Institute in Switzerland as a part of its long-term vision for Earthville Education.

The Vision

The Earthville Institute would be a center for the lifelong study and practice of five interrelated disciplines integral to a flourishing society:

  • Sustainable living
  • Responsible local and global citizenship
  • Sustainable business and social entrepreneurship
  • Integrated personal development, including holistic health and well-being, communication, collaboration, and leadership
  • Creativity and the arts, especially as applied to altruistic service and responsible entrepreneurship

The Earthville Institute would offer programs at reasonable rates for people of all ages, backgrounds, and beliefs, with a view to building community and catalyzing collaboration between the participants. The campus of the institute would serve as a showcase for regionally-appropriate best practices for ecological sustainability.

Programs and services to be offered at the Institute might include:

  • Educational presentations on important local and global issues
  • Ecological courses and workshops in various aspects of green living (e.g. organic gardening, etc.)
  • Well-being courses and programs, including yoga, meditation, nutrition, etc.
  • Natural health services such as therapeutic massage and other treatments
  • Day care for children, providing educational, ecological, and creative activities
  • Personal development workshops in communication, collaboration, and leadership
  • Vocational skills training in various areas that make meaningful contributions to society
  • Volunteer and service-learning opportunities for students, retirees, and people of all ages
  • Creative events and programs, including performances, exhibitions, and arts workshops

One of the first proposed programs is a service-learning and cultural exchange program between Switzerland and India. Several Swiss educators have expressed interest in bringing student groups to study at the Dharmalaya Institute in the Himalayas. Upon returning to Switzerland, these students would share their experiences with their peers and explore practical ways to implement what they’ve learned abroad in their lives back at home.

Current Status

The core of the founding team has been recruited and we have begun exploring the legalities.

We are now seeking funding to establish a startup-phase office in the town of Bulle (approximately 28km south of Fribourg), where one of our Directors and a number of supporters reside, so that planning can proceed efficiently and phase 1 programming can begin.

Help Us Make It Happen

Phase 1: Formalize the organization and establish a temporary startup office for planning and development work. Budget requirement: approximately 40,000 CHF (roughly 10% more in US dollars, depending on the fluctuating exchange rate) will be required to establish the startup office and fund its first two years of operation.

Phase 2: Acquire a suitable property for the Institute in the Suisse romande (the francophone area of Switzerland) and commence eco-friendly construction/renovation, while simultaneously developing programs and materials and conducting community outreach, building relationships and forging strategic partnerships. This phase will also provide service-learning opportunities for students, interns, and volunteers interested in sustainable living and organizational development. Budget requirement: to be determined after initial study; currently estimated at approximately 1,200,000 CHF.

Phase 3: Official launch: commence full range of program activities. Budget requirement: Operational expenses are estimated at 120,000 CHF for the first year; 100,000 CHF for the second year; and  80,000 for the third year; thereafter self-sustaining.

To support the establishment of Earthville’s presence in Switzerland, please contact us.

Get Involved

There are several ways you can participate in the Earthville Education initiative and make your unique contributions to this exciting project:

  • Join the Earthville Network to become an active member of the community  → sign up
  • Subscribe to the Earthville Education Blog and join the conversation by posting comments in the articles that interest you or submitting articles of your own  → go
  • Participate in Earthville’s educational programs and events  → see event calendar
  • Apply to volunteer for the Earthville Education initiative, and we’ll let you know when we’re ready to call you into action.  → apply now
  • Visit the Dharmalaya Institute in the Indian Himalayas to volunteer or participate in service-learning programs or retreats → jump to the Dharmalaya website
  • Help us establish the Earthville Institute in the US by making a tax-deductible gift or bequest  → more info