Neohumanist College Joins Community Coordinating Council

On the French Board River near Asheville

By Sid Jordan

The Neohumanist College of Asheville (NHCA) has joined an existing Coordinating Council (CC) that shares goods and services among members of the Mountain Breeze School, Prama Institute (PI) and Wellness Center (PWC) on the Ananda Girisuta MU, Women’s Wellbeing and Development Foundation (WWD-F) on the Ananda Vithika MU, 10-acre dairy/creamery, and Katuah Ecovillage.

The CC participants not only serve one another but also offer goods and services to the larger community. In addition to the Neohumanist College, and the Mountain Breeze School (see below), the PI and PWC, on 32 acres, offer a variety of yoga life style programs that serve a nation-wide group of attendees. The WWD-F has service projects that provide food, clothing and education for public housing as well as Abha Farms producing vegetables, fruits and herbs on their 34 acres. The privately owned 10-acre dairy and creamery provide organic grass fed milk, cheese and butter for the local community and Asheville area. The 25-acre Katuah Ecovillage is largely inhabited by families working with local projects associated with the CC.

These projects share their well water, products, farm equipment, facilities and programs with members of the CC and the surrounding community. This local CC is an experiment in learning to live together in a coordinated cooperative manner.

Mountain Breeze School

By Rachel Maietta

Mountain Breeze School, approaching the end of its third year of operation, has become a strong anchor for the Katuah Community, located just north of Asheville, North Carolina, adjacent to the Ananda Girisuta Master Unit. Twenty-two children are enrolled in the preschool. With only three of those students graduating into kindergarten programs in September, enrollment is already closed for the next school year, with 15 children on the waiting list. Looking toward the future, the school has opened up a waiting list for 2020-2010.
There is a buzz about Mountain Breeze Preschool in the local area, because the parents are so happy with the inclusive community of the school. Parents, children, and teachers are attracted to the calming, creative, and expansive nature surrounding the preschool, the focus on yogic values and practices, and the use on conscious, empathetic communication. The year started with many children that just turned three; they would try so hard to meditate and sometimes would put their hands over their eyes to try to focus, but now at the end of the year from consistent practice, it is so nice to see them slip into deep meditation so easily.

Mountain Breeze has expanded their garden with the help of a grant from a local organization, and the children grow an array of fruits and vegetables. Our two teachers have received a grant to continue their degree in early childhood education; they are able to be reimbursed for the courses they take. All teachers and directors take many courses that are offered in the local area at a discounted rate to stay current on topics. Some courses taken this year are reconnection and resilience, the brain and trauma, creating positive relationships and behavior, talking to children about race, nature education and exploration, emotional intelligence, and growing gardens with children.