A visit to the Camphill community Agualinda in Colombia
About ten years ago, Lina Maria Reina Gartner founded the Camphill community Agualinda in a suburb of Bogota together with Pablo Acevedo. In the eastern mountain range of the Colombian Andes, the town of Cota is located in the province of Cundinamarca, at an altitude of 2,566 m (8,419 ft), with a distinctly cool highland climate. Agualinda consists of a house community and the current house in Cota is not their first. After three different rented properties, the community is now looking for a piece of land on which to develop the next steps: a second, then more house communities, biodynamic agriculture, workshops and workplaces that address needs of the surrounding area (one idea is a recycling center), and a hall as a place for social and cultural life.
Agualinda is an affiliate member of the Camphill Association of North America (which may have to drop the ‘North’ from its name at some point…). Besides two initiatives in Argentina that are still more in the initial stages (Respirar Comunidad in Buenos Aires and Ambar Comunidad in Cordoba), Agualinda is currently the only Camphill community in Latin America. At the end of November 2022, Kerst de Jong (Camphill Copake and President-Elect of the Camphill Association), Karen Murphy (Executive Director of the Camphill Foundation) and Jan Göschel, member of the leadership team of the Council and the Camphill Movement Group spent a week with the community. In the being together in everyday life, encounters and conversations about the future of the community, also with parents and family members, and ideas about how these can be implemented step by step – also with the accompaniment and support of the Camphill movement in North America – arose. Most important, however, was the deepening of the personal relationships and friendships that make the joint commitment possible in the first place.