Every Dollar Goes a Long Way in Africa

And with just $3000 we can begin developing the remainder of the 20 acres of land for the InTerraTree site. Please give what you can to help us build the ecovillage and education center in Togo, West Africa. Your contribution will go a long way in breaking ground on a new kind of development model - one that empowers communities and celebrates local culture.

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About Us

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Founding Drums for Development

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The story of InTerraTree began in 2010 when founder, Nick Joyce, was living in West Africa. Feeling deeply
connected to the people he had met, and having seen the negative side effects of common aid models (dependency, loss of cultural identity, breakdown of social structures, environmental degradation), he knew he needed to develop a different strategy. Positive development had to celebrate cultural diversity and creativity, support local community resilience, protect the environment, and have long-lasting positive impacts. Nick dedicated himself to the search for a solution to positive development. When Nick met Senam Tsogbe, a local Togolese man, he knew he had found the right partner for positive development.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASenam, or Sego, is the founder of Centre des Hommes, a Togolese cooperative supporting sustainable community development through the arts. Centre des Hommes serves a crucial role in the community; maintaining and celebrating cultural traditions, intimately knowing and providing for community needs, protecting the environment, and having long-lasting impacts. They had found a way to meet all of the criteria for positive development and were funding it by doing what they loved, making music and art.

Upon his return to the United States, Nick founded the social enterprise Drums for Development. He began importing and selling drums and artwork made by Centre des Hommes and sending the money back to support their work. In the process of selling drums, Nick fell in love with drumming himself and began to see the incredible capacity of drumming to connect people. After teaching mindfulness drumming workshops across the East Coast of the U.S., Nick saw Drums For Development transform from being a non-profit to raise money for artists in Africa to an organization accelerating positive development worldwide by connecting people through drumming.

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Bringing InTerraTree to Life

 

InterraTreeLogo2Meanwhile, Nick and Sego had an even bigger project in mind. Despite having achieved their many accomplishments, the artists of Centre des Hommes still lived scattered throughout the city of Kpalime and remained largely dependent on sales through their store to meet their own needs and fund their community development projects. Nick and Sego wanted to brining this creative community back to the land, where they could re-connect with regenerative land management practices, have the space for an arts and sustainability educational center, and sustain themselves through growing their own food and providing hospitality at an on-site eco-lodge.

And so, the idea of InTerraTree was born. Moving away from common “aid” models, InTerraTree will model autonomy through regenerative land stewardship, locally owned social enterprise, appropriate technology, and transcultural exchange.

girls in togoIn April 2013 Drums For Development held their first online fundraiser and were able to send the founder of Centre Des Hommes, Sego, to the Kumasi Institute of Tropical Agriculture where he received a Permaculture Design Certificate.

In 2014, Drums For Development held their “Root the Tree” Campaign, this time to purchase land and begin planting food for the artists just outside their home city of Kpalime. In April 2014, the land was successfully purchased and the dream of InTerraTree was planted in the earth!

Big plans are underway for the InTerraTree land this winter 2014/2015. Beginning in September, Nick Joyce will backpack from Findhorn Ecovillage in Scotland down to Togo, West Africa on a journey we are calling the InTerraTree Activation Tour. Along the way he will be gathering inspiration from projects and communities, as well as building momentum for breaking ground on the InTerraTree site. You can follow Nick’s entire journey on our website.

We now host multi-week programs at InTerraTree with participants from around the world. These trips offer a blend of transformational cultural immersion and eco-development projects on our land in Togo, West Africa. Living in a tight-knit international community, we will share our cultures, talents, and creativity as we co-create the InTerraTree vision. Visit the Volunteer Trips page to learn more about an upcoming trip to Togo.

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Our Partners

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dfd logoDrums for Development

A movement using the universal language of music to develop solidarity for a sustainable future. 

We are a social enterprise bringing you handcrafts and music directly from Togo, West Africa, with proceeds going back to support community development projects (like InTerraTree!) in the region.

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Centre Des Hommes

What began as a group of artists and musicians banding together and refusing to give up on living their dreams, Centre des Hommes is a grassroots artist collective gone nationally-recognized non-profiit community development organization, that funds community development through celebration of their traditional culture.

 

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Our Team

Nick Joyce

Founder, Certified Ecovillage & Permaculture DesignerFollow

Senam "Sego" Tsogbe

Togolese PartnerFollow

Cynthia Tina

Volunteer Manager & Permaculture DesignerFollow

Seth Reynolds

Community Development & Environmental ConsultantFollow

 

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Interested in joining our team?

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We are currently accepting marketing and outreach interns for the spring 2015 season.

Please send a resume to contact@interratree.org

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