The start of the Giraffe Village

“I have a dream. To build an NVC village. To meet my need for connection, harmony and ease. Connecting with like minded people. Harmonious living in my neighbourhood. Like now, when having to make appointments, travelling by car to another city and having to leave my own safe environment to meet like minded people, I feel stressed about all this hassle. I have a need for ease in connecting with people. To be able to be with these like minded people all the time when I am at home.

This is my dream.



I live on a spot in a green area, together with 5-10 households who have the intention to use NVC. Every household bought its own plot of land and organised to design and build its own house. We share a central communal garden, that is bordered by all our plots. The communal garden is an edible landscape. It exists of a big field, containing fruit trees, bushes where edible berries and edible plants are growing and nut trees. Decision making about communal stuff and space is going in a sociocratic way.

When your newborn has been fed and feels as tired as its mother, after all those broken nights, I will offer you to put him in a sling and walk him to sleep. Keeping him close until he wakes up so that you can get a full two hour nap.

I trade the raw honey from my bees for the tomatoes from your greenhouse and the eggs from my chicken for the wool of your sheep. After I traded part of my produce to you, I will set up a roadside table shop to sell the rest to people passing by.

Every now and then, after you had a busy day in the city, my table will be ready for you, set with a delicious nourishing meal. Occasionally I will also open my house as a table d’hôte.

When I have to go to a dentist appointment or I have the need to go out all alone for a day, I know there’s always someone staying in the village who is willing to take care of my kids. Someone with a likeminded view on communicating and working with kids.

If I have the flu and I so much wish to just stay in bed the whole day. You pick up my kids so I have some quiet time and don’t have to take care for anyone. Another villager brings me some homemade heartwarming chicken stock, herbal tea and a pile of the most romantic movies of all time.

During the day my kids walk your dog, play with your cat and they will happily feed your ducks when you are away for the weekend to visit friends.

There is an inspiration lab in the communal garden. It’s a sober beautiful communal building with a lot of daylight, where my kids can join creative activities, organise a barefoot dance party or a silent disco and read books from the library. Where I can do yoga, teach you how to cook Indian, Moroccan and Thai food, organise Grok parties and join your NVC sessions to deepen my NVC-skills.

I have found a place to build my dream. To build whatever I want, on a location that I choose, with a huge garden. Really living outside, knowing that the area is green and stays green and yet near a big city. It is called Oosterwold. This is the landscape area between Almere and Zeewolde, 4300 hectare big. The gemeente Almere has set this area free to be able to develop urban agriculture. I would love to make my dream a project to build together with more people.”


When you feel inspired and want more information about living and building in Almere oosterwold, I invite you to become a member of the FB-group Almere Oosterwold

Here you can read some background information.

In this wiki you can find more detailled information about the Giraffe Village.

Thank you and loving greetings, Cathelijne van den Bercken