The OpenSourceLiving Foundation
Founded on September 15, 2012
Incorporated June 10, 2016 by the Secretary of State of California
Federal EIN: 81-2882338
Non-Profit; 501(c)(3) Status Pending by IRS
This public benefit corporation is organized exclusively for all educational and charitable purposes that help individuals improve not only their own personal economic and social well-being but also that of their communities. These purposes include financial support for programs centered around the implementation of clean technologies and regenerative practices (through qualified internal grant programs), skills-based education via workshops (such as biodynamic farming, clean energy hybridization, etc.), financial and educational assistance for community developments which promote autonomous living, and financial support for related ecologically conscious and/or socially responsible organizations for the purpose of providing educational support and materials to better assist people to enhance the quality of life within blighted or underserved communities.
Goals, History & Geographic Areas Served
The OpenSourceLiving Foundation began in Los Angeles, California in 2012, as an all-volunteer, nonprofit organization committed to eliminating the educational barriers to self-sustainable living within our local community. Since 2014, work began to create a free social networking platform catering to "agents of change" such as: socially responsible, eco-conscious and freedom-oriented individuals who want to directly interact with others and help make the world a happier and healthier place to live. We provide a comprehensive directory for businesses that share similar values.
Since that time, the project has expanded to include crowdfunding capabilities to help fund needed projects and a non-profit marketplace so members can create online shops for themselves while contributing to charity. After numerous discussions were held between interested parties, it was decided to take the steps necessary to form a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, and to begin leveraging existing social media developments for a positive change.
As support and interest continues to grow, we are responding to the challenge of meeting the needs of a larger population. Understanding that this expansion of services and programs will require more financial assistance, we incorporated the foundation in June of 2016, as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, and began appointing a strong and capable Board of Directors. We currently have a 5-person board, made up of with a mixture of experience ranging from financial and energy sector executives, entrepreneurs, as well as organic farming programmers and social architects.
We have researched and worked diligently to meet this broader range of needs. This work has led to the creation of specific goals for the foundation which cover the broader range of needs of underserved communities, as well as over and underdeveloped regions:
Grant Funding. Sustainable and regenerative projects that are unrelated to OpenSourceLiving but share similar goals may apply for financial assistance. Those projects which satisfy a set criteria shall be awarded available funds to help further the development of these projects.
Educational Scholarships. OpenSourceLiving believes that education in sustainable living is deficient and aims to help change this. Partial and Full educational scholarships will be awarded to qualifying students who are entering academic programs tailored to regenerative studies such organic agriculutre, clean technology, social ecology, etc.
Internships. Internships will be made available to persons interested in learning skills while living and working on-site of an OpenSourceLiving autonomous community.
Volunteer & Resource Centers. Reduce, reuse, recycle and waste management are core tenets of sustainable living. Volunteer & Resource Centers will be setup in major cities to facilitate volunteers and stage recyclable resources donated by area inhabitants (who will receive a tax write-off in equivalent value) for re-use in OpenSourceLiving projects and other third-party projects.
Eco Village Network. OpenSourceLiving not only wants to help facilitate a network of new self-sustainable and autonomous eco-villages around the world, but we also strive to connect existing communities in an effort to create a larger network for those folks who wish to participate.
Seeding Community Gardens. As planting operations within communities will produce an overabundance of seedlings, OpenSourceLiving plans to utilize them instead of wasting them. As we encourage local communities to plant community gardens, we will “seed” any verifiable community or educational garden project by making available at any volunteer and resource center a wide variety of organic seedlings and gmo-free seeds.
Hunger Relief. As a surplus of food is expected to be produced by each community, OpenSourceLiving will work with other charitable organizations to ease the burden of hunger by supplying said efforts with wholesome and healthy organic produce.
Homelessness Relief & Rehabilitation. OpenSourceLiving will work with local officials and charitable organizations to help alleviate their financial burden of caring for homeless persons through a volunteer program where screened persons will be accepted as volunteers into an eco-village for a set amount of time. Any site fees will be waived and they will receive the benefits of the eco-village as well as practical sustainable education during their volunteer time. They will be able to return to their locale socially improved , and with new sustainable skills and methodologies.
Natural Disaster Relief. Food Storage is a main process in daily OpenSourceLiving operations as food production surpluses will be freeze-dried, packaged and stored for emergency preparation. Each community will not only have the ability to sustain themselves, but also have the ability to lend a helping hand to those in immediate need when disasters occur within their region.
Data Analysis and Research. OpenSourceLiving shall be a centerpiece in measuring inflows and outflows and analyzing data regarding sustainable living. As the organization seeks to create a flexible and scalable operational model which can be replicated and deployed within depressed areas of the world, OpenSourceLiving will make available this valuable data for general research in an effort to change the fortunes for those who are adversely affected.
Centers for Regenerative Studies. By working closely with area educational institutions, larger communities will have Centers for Regenerative Studies built to provide to interested students full-scholarships to educate themselves in a dormitory-style, hands-on live-work arrangement. Curriculum will cater to both undergraduates and graduates and credits transferable to other accredited universities.
The OpenSourceLiving Foundation’s work is critical to reversing the resource-depleting imbalance caused by an ever-rising global population. As inequality gaps increase, so does dependency upon third parties for life-sustaining goods and services. For example, numerous studies have shown that the most basic of human rights, access to adequate food, remains a major problem to this day, and even in the United States. People do not have regular, permanent and unrestricted access, either directly or by means of financial purchases, to quantitatively and qualitatively adequate and sufficient food. Low-income neighborhoods frequently lack full-service grocery stores and farmers’ markets where residents can buy a variety of high-quality fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy products (Beaulac et al., 2009; Larson et al., 2009; Bell et al., 2013). The USDA reported that , “vehicle access is perhaps the most important determinant of whether or not a family can access affordable and nutritious food” (Ver Ploeg et al., 2009). Households with fewer resources (e.g., SNAP households, WIC households, food insecure households) are considerably less likely to have and use their own vehicle for their regular food shopping than those households with more resources (Ver Ploeg et al., 2015). The third parties in place that they rely on are not showing great results. When available, healthy food may be more expensive in terms of the monetary cost as well as (for perishable items) the potential for waste. The OpenSourceLiving Foundation seeks to empower people through education and assistance with their own personal autonomy, thus increasing the overall strength and vibrance of their communities and society as a whole.