An example of creating Family Homesteads in an existing rural settlement

5 December 2017

My companions and I, like 15 million other people, have read the books of Vladimir Nikolaevich Megre. I liked the description of the image of people’s lives, which can be implemented. I loved the description of life in the homestead and the relationship between people, and people’s relationship to the environment. I loved the description of the community of entrepreneurs with pure thoughts. In 2005, I began my career as an entrepreneur. And the opportunity to join a Union of entrepreneurs that will participate in projects to improve the environment inspired me very much. In 2007, Dmitry Yaromov began to organize a team of entrepreneurs who like the idea of the books of Vladimir Nikolaevich Megre, and who are ready to create a settlement of Family Homesteads.

Dmitry proposed to equip our homesteads in the Buzinovskaya Viselkovskogo, Krasnodar Krai. The nature is beautiful, there are roads, electricity, gas, water and a river along all the sites, plus convenient to Krasnodar and Rostov-on-Don. One minus: it was very choked up with waste on our private land, and in the village there were a lot of ad hoc landfills. Based on the principle, “In the Forest leave nothing. Instead of making a mess, protect it”, in 2007 we began to buy land in the most difficult circumstances, and far from the center of the village – tractor brigade # 1. In this part of village there were 200 lots, but people only lived in 50% of them, gradually they all slid into the city.

Plots in this village are divided into plots of 5000 sq. m. each. We mostly ended up claiming a row of lots in order to form one hectare as a Family Homestead. Just as is written in the books: Family Homesteads – a land area at least 1 hectare.

We took all the trash off the sites, dozens of tip trucks filled up to the top. We also started to mow the grass near the houses, plant flowers and trees, equip the places with services and utilities.

Our part of the village began to transform. We did not build huge houses and two meter brick fences. We simply painted the old fences, repaired the old homes, instead of ramshackle unfit windows we decided on new plastic ones. Neighbors started to do the same thing. And locals put a sign at the entrace: “Pублевка” (one-ruble note).

After a few years, we had formed our plots. I took two years to buy three sections in a row, and as a result made up a total area of 1.5 hectares. Last year I bought another site, and now my homestead is 2 hectares. In 2007, our like-minded friends bought 30% of sites in our tractor brigade. There are now nine Family Homesteads formed for residence by a family.

After we bought the first areas in 2007, we met with the head of the township administration. This is a very positive, hard working, responsive woman – Chernyavskaya Lyubov Evgeniya.

We said we intend to do business activities and equip areas in the old village as described in the books of Vladimir Nikolaevich Mегре. We also explained that we were willing to help administration with proper establishment and cleaning landfills. Lyubov Evgeniya was surprised that someone would want to live in a village and help the administration.

My life began to change. Goals appeared for my life.

People in our collective made plans for their lives in 10, 15, 25 years. Many of the team’s desires coincided with mine.

My parents supported me and were inspired by my desire to equip the plot. Everyone helped clean the site: my grandfather, parents, brother, aunts and uncles, cousins.

I planted plants, made a parking area, planted out a garden, conifers, bushes and a grove of birch trees. According to my plan, a small pond was dug of the site. I also needed to repair the plumbing in the old but solid house. When I replanned the old home, I had six months to invent and imagine how to make it a cozy for me and to join its image to the area completely, to be a harmonious part, and of course, for it to be a place for meetings with my friends our large collective. I made a terrace from which you can see the entire plot, and put glass doors on the terrace. From the house you can see the whole plot. It turned out that this one single space is very cozy, and from here you can feel the entire area.

I come from a family of agronomists and gardeners. Part of the site – 4000 sq. m. – I had not laid anything out, and my parents offered to put a garden there. This was necessary so that the plot could feed us. Economic calculations were the following: on 4000 sq. m. we planted 300 trees by means of laying out each tree in a three by four meter area. In the fifth year, each tree gives 50 to 100 kg fruit, making a total of 15 to 30 tons, in my case, of apples, and the money from this ranges from 1.2 million to 6 million rubles. In my opinion, it is quite a good income. Moreover, it is a good pension for my parents, and it’s an annual income which lasts 30-50 years. We planted this garden with the whole family and friends. Everyone participated with such pleasure in the plantings on 23 February, and 8 March. We spent both holidays planting, after which we had a traditional tea party.

In my opinion, people in the cities nowadays lack creative work. But due to this kind of participation, many of my friends personally perceived their own self with great wishes and joy.

My relationship with my parents since everything happened in the village has become much better, with communication and understanding. I can say that a relationship has actually appeared. The family has become united. My parents brothers and sisters come to visit us, we spend the evening together and talk a lot. I’m very pleased that there is always this treat of having visitors to the plot. During this time my parents even seemed to get younger, as if extending their youth. I think this is because of doing things together with their children – with me and my brother. They warmly participate in my project and it turns out very nicely. Now they and my younger brother have taken up their own land in the village.

I saw that this pattern has formed. Very similar events occurred with our friend – писковым Alexander Petrovich, former police major, who moved to our village after retirement. He worked on his plot to equip his Family Homestead. Alexander suffered badly from hypertension. After one year he was no longer overweight, and his hypertension problems were gone. His adult children liked the project a lot, and they began to visit him as guests for a few days at a time. Understanding appeared between the father and his children. Alexander’s first education was as an agronomist (he studied with my aunt), and he also put an apple orchard on 4000 sq. m. of his area.

I saw what it feels like when my space loves me. And I will say it loved not only me, but also my friends as well. It is so interesting to watch this. My space loves those who I love. When someone comes as a guest, often so that a cactus flower blooms, or yellow strawberries give some fruit, or snowdrops open, sparrows bring a huge caterpillar and put it in front of us on the table, or fish in the pond begin to take bread from our hands. Something always happens that brings us delight, as if the space waited for someone to arrive, and it is doing something pleasant for the guests.

Now I have a place for to meet with my friends, and it keeps our friendship safe.

For seven years there has been no issue with my school friends as to where we meet. Of course, in my homestead. Here everyone gets an energy charge. There are things for children to do. Even when we are a group of 15, there is always space for each, and everyone is sure to find an interesting lesson for themselves during a few days’ stay with me.

A lot of people speculated how my mates with whom I organized the settlement and I received an income and whether we needed to go to the city. In our settlement there was a good trend: we began to plant gardens. Now all our friends have homesteads occupied by 30-40% gardens. As the gardens begin to bear fruit in full power, we organize processing of the products we grow. We also managed to secure a place for such a workshop.

It is necessary that people living in the settlement will grow rich. Then they will be able to participate in significant social projects. I like very much how it is described in books of Vladimir Nikolaevich Мегре. A project is described, and when it is considered useful and desirable, people who wish to take part contribute according to their means. Of course, I believe that there should be entrepreneurs in the settlement – people who can organize participation in the jobs associated with establishing a settlement.

I very much wish that we will find solutions at this conference, such that people can earn an income in the settlements.

One must be useful to oneself, their school (collective) and the planet. Then they are in harmony. I currently verified this theory. When I do public works as part of my business, business becomes better. My speed of thought increases and my decisions become accurate, I spend less time on laborious tasks and my financial condition improves. Of course, there is life energy when my comrades and I realise a plan together, for example to put 400 trees in the public square. Thus we bring about joint creation and joy born of what has been done.

Tasks involving the arrangement of public areas.

In addition to everything in our homesteads, our team decides objectives for the settlement. We cleaned the ad hoc landfills over 8 years. First, together with the authorities, we taught the population not to throw away garbage in the forest belts, riverside, or on the land of former farms or the cultural centre. With full interaction with the local administration, we organized collection and export of the whole village’s household waste. To do this, it was necessary to buy a garbage truck, communicate with housing and utilities authorities, get a license for transportation of debris, and to organize the signing of contracts with the villagers and a payment mechanism for these services. Then we hired an earthmover and cultivated the ad hoc landfills. Now I can say about this whole thing, there were 6 proposals, 7 years of labor, and a fair amount of funds invested.

We made every effort to do it all in accordance with existing legislation. This is very advantageous. Always some pluses.

So now we and the whole settlement have public areas where we can carry out holiday celebrations, fairs, and simply walk about.

We took on the land of the old culture house – an overgrown 2 hectare plot, all blocked up with rubbish. Just the task for us.

We laid out the project and met with the head. We proposed to clear out this land and to make a park with a space to hold markets and fairs. And the main thing – to lodge the application. The head of the village administration of course supported us. we check out the site – on foot – of the recreation area and the commercial zone. We agreed on cleaning the area and planting it out with the administration and the local prosecutor’s office. After receiving all approvals, we prepared all the documents in the name of the administration of our village, allocated the plot, and got all the permissions and documents of title. As a result, we cleaned the whole territory and planted 400 plants. At the moment we are taking care of the public garden.

Once we had completed this, at one of the meetings of our village district, it was reported that because we now have a park in the village, our activities fall under the action of the federal works program that will install a playground with the training equipment, children’s town, benches, and fix the track in the park. Everything happened just like that: we only needed to show that the people need it, and that they are interested in this kind of thing. This is program to improve the lives in the village.

Over a total of 10 years, we made an abandoned village into an attractive residence for those who want to create their Family Homesteads. We organized interaction between people in our collective, and the entrepreneurs who are creating their Family Homesteads in the settlement organized means of financing the projects. We organized interaction with the local administration and district police. We organized labor-time for the local population and some extra work for teenagers. As 30% of our plots grow gardens, we organized an identity focus for our residents – gardening. In 2017 we organized sales of the products we grew. Our children grow up in a socially responsible environment where each adult takes responsibility for the world around us and does everything to make better interactions with the authorities, rather than scolding them. We improved the environmental conditions in the village. We removed all the dumps, organized disposal of the rubbish. We participate in the activities of the “Ringing Cedars of Russia” movement, and partly finance and provide for events and projects – three “Ringing Cedars of Russia” festivals and the organization of a news flow among settlements. We also visited the readers’ conference of Vladimir Nikolaevich Мегре abroad.

This was due to the leader of our collective Dmitry Yaromov. In the books of Vladimir Nikolaevich it is written that there will be leaders who organize a group of people and their activities. Our collective – the collective of Dmitry Yaromov. Yes, we are independent entrepreneurs, some of us have our own collectives with more than 100 people working for us, but Dmitry showed us the focus of our direction: how people can cooperate to improve the world around us.

They ask me: “Why all this, for me personally?”

I want the Law on Family Homesteads to be adopted. I want the planet to be gardens and forests.

Here’s an idea: I propose to start a flash mob: “I want to live in a Family Homestead.” Join now!

Evgeniya Brovarets, entrepreneur, Krasnodar


Translated by Kemble Dawson Walker

Original article (in Russian):