FreeLab is a small collective, working locally and online, to spread practical knowledge about social self-governance, whether that means helping people understand how to build their own water pumps, farms, or build rocket stoves.
We spent some time living in Greece, around 2008, when "crisis" became the most popular word there. Despite the economic climate, we noticed that there were growing groups of people in Greece that decided to create self-governing communes, without any help from the government. Their solidarity economies provided the local communities with food logistics, a medical center for migrants and uninsured citizens, an alternative currency and trading system, as well as energy technology development and implementation. And, they were surprisingly efficient.
Most failed community initiatives we know in Poland and worldwide were not sustainable because of internal problems and poor leadership. For freedom-oriented, consensus-driven, and participation-run communities, this problem is universal. So, we thought, why not explore the successful communities and show people what works so that more solidarity economies can exist across the world?
We have selected to film and document several stable communities that operate various social projects in Greece. All of them are democratic and purely not-for-profit. We’re creating video guides and a website that will explain how to solve typical internal problems and still remain productive as a solidarity economy. We’re also setting up a network for internships, in which people will be able to learn from these successful communities.
For the next three years, we plan to expand the project by exploring similar communities in Spain and Portugal. We’re creating a growing network of people living off the land, and we want to help them remain successful by showing them what has universally worked among each of their communities. It’s a fascinating subject to explore, but we also see it as a way to give back to communities we think have great morals, ideals, and better ways of operating through society.
Rather than ask you for financial and social media support, we want to know if you’d like to offer pro bono help remotely by doing transcription and proofreading in Greek and English, translation in Polish, Spanish, German, and Russian, or video editing. We'd love for you to help. Check out our campaign on goteo.org.
Click here to add pro bono translation and video editing work to your To-Do list.