Get Started. Okay, everybody, welcome to the our visioning empathy circle for the retreat center at the 1964 Canalis. Los Pinos Road in Santa Barbara had kind of this is a series of empathy visioning circles we're doing at, think about the vision for this for the space. It's, for anyone watching this, it's a property that my brother just purchased in Santa Barbara. It's an old seminary, and the idea, so we want to make it into a into a retreat center. And he asked me to manage it. So this Friday group is for our empathy community to talk about what ideas we have for you know, building a retreat center, there are actually an empathy center. So thanks, everybody, for joining us here. And maybe we'll just start with introductions, your name, where you're located and why you're interested in this visioning circle. And I'll just model it Edwin Rutsch. Sackett, from the San Francisco Bay Area, since my brother just bought the property asked me to manage it, I have a big, a big interest in kind of making this kind of work. So that's my main reason, uh, Bill, you want to introduce yourself? Sure.
I'm Bill filler, retired special education teacher working with Edwin on the culture of empathy for about five years. And this is a, I think, a beautiful place to flesh out and experience empathy with other people. And also, at the same time, experience empathy with nature. Thanks.
Me once or Linda bass, Texas, I'm a mediator. And I'm interested in this because anything that can help bring people together for more understanding and acceptance. I'm for Dave,
I'm Dave Gottfried. I live in Berkeley, I work. I've worked with Edwin on some of the empathy tent stuff. I visited the site about two weeks ago. And it's sure is a special place I can say that the buildings are institutional, but the look, the site is just unbelievable. And there's an incredible amount of potential I'm I guess for me, question number one is what are the what are the capacity constraints that seems to be that's going to determine so much of what can be done? Because it's you go to that place and you have 6000 ideas. So
I'm far from the site in Illinois. I'm originally from southeastern Europe. I've worked with Edwin on lastly, on the defining empathy project. I'm an empathy researcher, and enthusiast have been for years. So I would love to see more empathy in all the cultures, but I'm currently in this American culture. So I think we could definitely use more of that in many, many aspects. I'm a psychologist, I work as a therapist and do some testing here in central Illinois. Yeah. And your,
your PhD was in empathy to so you've been really steeped in this topic of empathy.
Yes. Okay. Very much. So.
Hey, thanks, Larry.
I am Larry, I'm a retired occupational therapist living in Florida, and I really enjoy the empathy circles. Just want to keep, you know, spreading them, promoting them sharing them. I think it's a phenomenal call it tool that Edwin and the team have created. And I want to be involved however I can. Thanks.
Just give a quick, just little tour of the space just for a few minutes. Just for anyone watching. You can see the space you go to right now with the title just a working website is canola center.com Because it's on last Canalis Road in Santa Barbara. This is the property and if you go to the tour section, you can scroll down there's some photo tours you And there's also a Google Earth tour and some videos that you can see just kind of see what the property is like, if you click on Google Earth, it, you know, shows you the property and you can zoom in and you know, look at it from different dimensions. And so it's kind of a, just to get a sense of it, it's on three, five acres that has things there's a, there's a chapel, accommodations, a kitchen, and a gym there. So that's just kind of the space that we're looking at, it needs a lot of work a lot of renovation, and my brother is willing to put in some money to do the renovations, couple of million dollars for renovations. And, you know, it's now our mission, our vision is to create a culture of empathy with our mission being to use have education be sort of the core to promote that vision. So we want to open it up just for what everybody is thinking about their ideas. And about the space. What is the title here is what is your vision for an empathy based Retreat Center at 1964 conoce. Road Santa Barbara, we're going to do the empathy circle practice, which everyone here is familiar with. And that will have four minute turn. So who wants to start and Bill is going to be keeping time? So anybody can start just select your listeners, since everybody here knows you know how to do the process
I'll jump in
you speaking to
let's see, put my glasses on. Is it Valera by Alanna Hello. This is my first time seeing the the space. And when you say a gym, that piqued my interest because I'm really into physical fitness.
So you hadn't seen the space before and the gym is especially grabbed your attention. You're very passionate about physical health, physical fitness.
Yes. And so I think we have a mantra at the gym that I go to this little private gym, and it says, prepare to age. So in that gym, you know, I can see people come in with with the intention of preparing to age because your body will age. And you can be empathetic to your body by continuing to move and exercise.
So you're connecting it to the gym, you're going to currently, which has this sign that says prepare to age. And it's it's kind of this invitation to be empathetic with our bodies that they will age.
Yes. And the secret to life is to keep moving.
Yes, I can also see the facility used for bridging. I don't like to use the word racial divide, but ethnic or cultural divides, I think we as a people have more in common than we do.
So now you're jumping to other ideas apart from physical fitness that could be happening on that on those premises. And the first thought you're thinking of is bridging the ethnic divides, you just don't like the word racial. And this establishing the idea that as human beings, we have more in common than divides us.
Yes. And so rather than just having a wide open, you can have actually a book club, if you will, where you have to, you know, you're asked to read a certain book that deals with ethnic or cultural differences, and then have a discussion. But if you haven't read the book, you can't have the discussion. So it's, you know, it was I could see that happening where, where people would be focused on a particular book, therefore, they're focused on one particular thing that runs through that book, and that's what the, the empathy circle would be about.
Okay, so you're moving further into more detail. So specific activity that could happen is a book club, that will be mediated the sharing of the discussion of the book club, could we mediate it as an empathy circle? And maybe one of those books could be on reaching those divides.
Yes. That's all I have to say at this time I feel fully heard. Thank you.
Bill, would you mind being my listener?
Not at all happy to Violetta? Okay.
I did write some of my ideas down in that document. And so they're kind of in two different directions. One is more procedure like, and the other one is more content and kind of what are the specific things that happen?
Okay. So you wrote down your ideas, they fall into two general categories. One is procedural, procedural Lee, since I know why that's your language, my language, I have no excuse. And, and then the other one is more content.
And as somebody who is very passionate about the authorship, you know, who, who what am I an author of? I'm more, I've spent more time on the procedures and how do we identify as I would identify the authors of, of this? Edwin knows I called the empathy Castle, because is just so fairytale like, but who would be the authors who would feel like I, I'm, I'm really very closely connected to that place. So that's, that's what my thoughts went to how will we? Or maybe we're doing it as we speak? How do we become authors of that empathy movement, so that it is not something that's happening out there, but he's happening with us and us first?
Yeah. So you said how do we identify the author's or how authorship and I infer that that's authorship in the broadest sense possible, like a creator or creative people. And the idea that I discerned from what you said, is that is to create activities and things at the center, that would give people the experience of empathy and engender a sort of, you know, inner journey towards empathy. Sorry, and correct me if I'm in mistake,
that for sure. I'm, I'm still thinking of, how do we plan out things maybe? How are we choosing more or maybe various directions, and this is more content oriented? Empathy, culture brings a lot of value to the bipartisan political model. And this this idea of division, between ethnicities, as Linda pointed out, but also between human beings that belong to different parties, coming from a place that has multiple parties. This bipartisan model is very strange. But division could happen, obviously, in many places. And that's, that's a heritage that the empathy Castle is taking from the empathy tent.
Right. So you're talking about the empathy Castle, just want to make sure we see that so you see, more than in that sense, it's expansive, it's complex, it, you know, it's growing. And now you've kind of shifted over to content more, and specifically talking about bridging divides, and how do we bring people? How do we give people the experience, as Linda said, that they have more in common than more different?
Yes, beautiful. So in that respect, I'm thinking of having the political line but also education and mental health. These are the three probably kind of generalized areas that I've given most thought to. Right, the role of empathy.
So the area as far as content you're concerned, generally speaking, would be the political divide. Education. I lost the third one on mental health, mental health. Yes. And mental health. Yeah. And so those are the general ideas, you know, that we you'd see creating curriculum for those particular things.
Thank you Bellefield. fully heard.
All right. Go to Dave. Here, all right. Well, I have you know, very similar ideas to what both Linda and Violetta talked about. Stop there.
You're in alignment with the Violetta and Linda's ideas.
Yeah. And I think that I appreciate Violetta for bringing up the idea of like sort of procedure. Because I think that in order to make it going as far as financially, you need a phased in approach. stopped there.
So you're wondering how how you're going to pay for it. And you think you have to do it step by step.
Yeah. And so when my ideas were, first of all, you have that chapel there. And I don't know exactly what condition the chapels in. But that would be perfect for I said, you know, birthdays, weddings, funerals, kingsun, yeras, bar mitzvahs, boss methods, you don't have to repeat all that stuff. But all sorts of activities that would take place in one day. And so therefore, the food and support services would not have to be extensive, or ongoing, in order to get started to do something like that.
So you're seeing the potential of the chapel? Or an event as a place to hold events that might be able to generate income is the sense I'm getting from you. Yeah,
that's right over like one day. Yeah. So you again, you don't have to worry too much about the lodging or the food that could be one meal or something like that. But you don't have to have an ongoing housekeeping staff, cooking staff and things like that already in place.
I'll stop there. Yeah, so the advantage of being single day events without residency lowers the ongoing overhead,
right. And I also considered bridging political divides, but I think ethnic divides any other divides, it would be an excellent place for people who agree to come there, you know, live together, and then participate in empathy circles, over a course of a few days.
So they're, for other kinds of things that might require longer interactions between people that would might be good for people to common stay some some days. Yeah,
yeah. It's, you know, besides the empathy circle itself, it's hard to break bread with people, it's hard to, you know, see them as the other. And then the other idea I had was, you know, is to take our training, sort of, pare it back a bit to the for the, which is original facilitation training. And then over like, a weekend, two days, you could do two, two, you know, sessions in on a Saturday, people come on a Friday, to sessions on a Saturday to sessions on a Sunday, that is four hours of empathy circle over the days, but it also leaves a lot of time for taking a hike hanging out and being in nature, maybe a little bit of a side trip and things like that. So that people rather than usually in these things, they're kind of locked in a room for like three or four, I've, I've done it for three or four days with a room with no windows. And this way we integrate this unit, you know, the outside with what they're experiencing inside, because I think going out in nature is another way of listening. And then I'm good.
So you can imagine retreats to take advantage of the location. And so that there's a multi dimensional aspect for people to get to know each other. And it's not just a sort of institutional get together.
Right? Yeah. The outdoor and into indoor integrator. Thanks, Dave. I feel fully heard. Okay.
And when you're ready so yeah, I mean, I, I guess what I'm, I think it's easy to come up with ideas of what one could do what I don't quite understand. I guess the. I mean, the chapel is big. It's, you could have a many things in there. You could have concerts in there. All kinds of concerts. It's conceit. It looks to me like more people than were allowed. That's the big question for me because it looks to me like the way one could generate income there without fundraising is to have events there. I mean, the gym is enormous. Its enormous. You have no idea how big it is. It's just enormous. And the the, the the, the chapel is very big. And, and it's got a big parking lot. And but the the neighbors are very concerned about traffic.
So the spaces Oh, sorry. Yeah, let me stop. So okay. Yeah, the chapel is quite big can take 280 people, it's and there's another big building the gym which is two basketball courts. So it can be held a lot of people there is parking but the neighbors have concerns about the amount of traffic coming up there.
Yeah, and I and I read, I read through some of the the paperwork that's gone on over the years, because I was thinking, Well, why can't you bring people up in buses or something? And then that's not so easy either. Because you have to have a place in town where everybody parks their cars, for example,
you think you're the logistics? Like how do you bring people up there and maybe with buses? But then that's a complication too, like, where did where do you park in the city or the town?
So you know, I have a real question about is that a direction that you want to push in trying to resolve? Like, what sort of capacity? We can have there? Because otherwise, I think it's going to be hard to fund itself.
Yeah, so the if the capacity is too low, you know, it's going to be hard to fund itself. So is it about pushing the the amount of people, you know, having more people there, and just kind of that whole issue? I think you're looking at?
Yeah, and, you know, not that one would have more people all the time. But there are all kinds of things one could do that. Integrated both residences, for example, and, and events that bring in the community, whether it's to people, you know, you could have a, an empathy week or conflict resolution week, you could have experts come in and speak where people come up from town and come to the chapel. It can be some can be hybrid, you know,
there's a lot of different possibilities. It could be like having an empathy week, people come and give talks there from the from the town, is it seems like a lot of different possibilities. And you're just kind of trying to put it together? Like, how do you put all that together? The possibilities? Well,
yeah. I mean, that's my basic question here. And and, you know, what's your sense of flexibility on the part of the community?
And you're just kind of wondering how you see the community, How flexible are they for the amount of, you know, people up there? That's Ben, thanks. So I'll speak to Larry. Ready? Yeah, that's there's something called the conditional use permit, which we've been trying to track down, which is like, when the buildings were created, what was the allowed capacity for the space? So that's sort of like the core document that sort of says, what the space can be used for.
So it's been I'm hearing that there is a document called conditional use permit. And you're trying to track that down to see what the original capacity for people to visit the senator was originally intended and permitted to be.
And it looks like it was almost like, first out because it was the seminary and they had, you know, priests and seminarians and guests, and they had nuns that were there that were kind of taking care of the cooking and, and it looks like it was like 120 people staying there, like, yeah, around that. Even more.
So originally, they were pre Sundance, and it looks like there's about 120 people staying there.
And it's still a little bit murky, you know, we I've been contacted gathering all the documentation. I think we found the conditional use permit isn't like a clearly defined paper. It's like, they had proposed this to build the space. They gave an outline of what they wanted. They had a county commission, you know, meeting they passed it and sort of like that is the conditional use permit. Is that what went through the committee, and it's, there's some little kind of vagueness, you know, or around that's an old document to from the 6019 6266, early 60s,
since the original coup permit was created in 1960s. And it was a little bit vague, it's not quite clear as to the total capacity, apparently, even right now, it's just not clear.
Yeah, so we're trying to clarify that we're talking with all the different city agencies, when I talk with the planning commission, I hear what their thoughts are getting an email with them. So that's like a core document, then it's like, this is what it was allowed for in a retreat center in a seminary was sort of what it was set up for. So it fits that use. So it seems like we're good there is going to be how much you know, it traffic issues and all that. So that's all these kinds of technical things that needed to be kind of worked out. And so we're working on it.
So it apparently was set up originally as retreat center. So it sounds like seminary
and Senator Santos seminary for priests teaching priests, you know, so that was the core purpose
of seminary for teaching priests. That was the core, and the retreat center. So it looks like it fits the category for what is intended to be as a retreat center. Yeah,
and in terms of, we've been holding the circles with the Santa Barbara Community, the neighbors, and everybody's, like, totally excited about it, it's like we have really good, because we're talking with people, we have an open empathic, you know, engagement with the community, I think we're just setting a good tone, you know, kind of walking our talk. And, you know, talking, you know, the community is excessively excited about, oh, here's this space, it's been kind of idle for years and years, you know, eight years is pretty much been idle. So they're glad to see some kind of productive use. But you know, they do have various concerns, too. But it's been very, very inspiring
that they're. So for the most part, that community is very excited about seeing this, this, this building that has not been used for the last eight years, put back into use, and they're pretty much excited about it. And you've been establishing an empathic relationship with the community. So everybody is on board with the plans and looking forward to it.
Yeah, they'll hurt thanks.
Thank you every Violetta, will you be my listener? Pleasure. Thank you. Well, I'm also excited about the idea of a center that has the intention of fostering empathic communication.
You're excited about this center that's fostering empathic communication.
Yes. And that, from the ground up, so to speak, that there's an empathic reaching to the community, for their inclusion in the center.
You're referring to what Edwin called walking the talk, and that the center is founded on this empathic interaction with the community.
And I have this hope that it can be self sustaining, including its own organic garden, to help feed the people.
So you're adding more ideas to what we've been talking about. And one of them is to be a self sustaining community, including an organic garden
and then, with the idea of empathy being throughout, I guess, so we call that an empathic, intentional community.
And empathic, intentional community refers to the idea that empathy is kind of at the center of the whole endeavor.
Exactly. And from that empathic intention, that educational presentations could be made there for the community and the the nearby, possibly colleges could receive continuing educational units from this educational center.
So a next step has the garden and the self sustaining community would be making it with this empathic intention and educational centers, well, that would provide community education, but also continuing education credits for higher education institutions, most of those from what I hear would be geographically nearby.
And from that empathic intention in the nearby locality, this could also be hybrid, teaching by example, through something like zoom.
So we could add localities that are not nearby and add them via zoom, or another hybrid model.
So this could be in a way the first of its kind, global example of an empathic demonstration.
So in addition to education about empathy, and this kind of coin, empathic intention, you're talking about also a demonstration of empathy, and making that more of a global experience, starting from that location, but also expanding to, to others.
Yes, and as as it says, in A Course in Miracles, to teach, is to demonstrate.
Okay. And you're correcting my hearing here with a quote from A Course in Miracles to text I'm not familiar with, to teach is to demonstrate
Thank you, Violetta.
Thank you, Larry. Minda? Would you be one listener?
Yes, glad to
see somebody who is very passionate about academia and sees myself as a researcher. I was good. I was excited to hear about the educational component and the continuing education credits from very honestly, somehow that hadn't occurred to me. So I think it's a great idea.
As a person who is passionate about academia, you were, you hadn't thought about it, but you you liked the idea of the continuing education credits and and focus on education at the center.
Especially Edwin's connections, with pretty much every, as far as I know, every empathy other. That's our contemporary, that has been very happy to talk to him in his interviews, and I'm sure would be willing to come physically or virtually, to those trainings.
So what I heard you say is that Edwin has a hook up with a lot of the author's and professionals in the empathy circle, and you're pretty sure they'll be willing to make presentations or teacher teaching sessions either virtually or on site.
So that could definitely be a source of revenue. And, at the same time, a way to expand the culture of empathy with that empathic intention.
Okay, this could be a source of revenue, and a way to expand the empathy culture.
And another thought I had that I don't think we've mentioned so far is having retreats, which is I know very basic, because it is a retreat center. But retreats for I mean, the helping professions and I know a lot of burnout happens in our field, from social work through psychiatry. And now how could we be organizing these retreats? Whether with a professional organization or the empathy center itself, could be offering this type of places for healing of helpers. Yeah.
And you also see, focusing on mental health, social workers and people in the helping professions that they experienced burnout after a while, and you could see this being a location where they can come a retreat where they can recharge.
Yes. Those are my thoughts at this point, thank you interview for your like,
Okay. Everyone, listening, just listening to everybody. I mean, ideas are just popping in my head. But one thing that we I would strongly suggest is that we'd focus on security for the building for the facility.
So your lot of ideas are popping by hearing everybody else's ideas, and the first thing is coming up as security for the building. Yes,
I also liked the idea that what you were saying, because that was one of my concerns is that you're engaging the community around there. So they have their stakeholders. And they apparently you have given them an opportunity to have some buy in, in regards to how the campus is going to be used.
So you really appreciate that we have these empathy circles with the community and that they have, they're being heard there's a buy in for them about its development. Yes.
And, you know, let's say Don't say no, how do you, you know, eat an elephant one bite at a time. So this is a huge facility. And I could, I would suggest that we focus on just starting out with small activities or whatever, and then expand as we, you know, go along
to, you know, how do you This is like a big elephant? And how do you eat an elephant, it's kind of like one bite at a time. And that's sort of the approach that you're thinking of just chip away at it one bite at a time.
Yes, then because I'm in mediation. And I'm not familiar with the locale unless around that, but you can, mediators and attorneys of whatever, they're always looking for a neutral setting for mediation, conflict resolution, and you can charge that can generate some income, the basketball, the gym with the basketball court, the community would love to have community basketball games. So these are school games, you know, for a minimum fee.
So that the space can be rented out for lawyers and mediators to hold up a neutral space for doing their mediations, as well as the gym, you see that the community could hold events there.
Yes, specifically sporting community basketball events. And as far as the gym and empathy, and I think this tracks a little bit with Bill's interest in, in children. I'm not familiar with California, what they do, but the schools here have limited physical activity during the day for the kids.
So in terms of the schools, there are schools where you are they have limited gym and activities and you're just you're not sure how it would be there in Santa Barbara. But
so when you start kids out at a young age, learning, listening skills, conflict resolution skills, and at the same time learning, teaching them how to exercise or yoga or some way to harness their energy and chin and and focus it in a positive way.
So you just see that for school students, students, kids, you know, start teaching them these skills, listening and also physical skills that their energy that goes in this constructive positive way.
You know, in all of this is, again, not sure about I don't know about the the locale and the community but you know, for minimum fees people be willing to pay if they can see some benefit for themselves or their children.
So you're really looking at the financial aspect that if this is a wider agenda, Rate, maybe some income people would be willing to pay for the mediation space or for the the gym for their kids. Yeah.
My time is right,
then I'll speak to Dave
Yeah, so what I'm thinking of, I mean, this is a big space, we're gonna need to get people involved in it, right? And so we have these empathy circles as sort of a gateway to kind of connect with people. I'm looking at how do we get people, you know, really engaged in the space? And what what will it take?
So you're wondering how, since it's such a big place, how to get enough people engaged to make it work?
Yeah, like we were doing the empathy circles and your empathy work online, we have a lot of people have come taking the training, we have a whole group of trainers. But it's pretty much all been volunteer work. And, you know, people drift off, like, you can see, it's like, oh, there's no income here. I need to do something for an income. So there's, there's something about people needing a livelihood, you know, and so I'm just thinking about that.
So you're trying to understand if you get people engaged, how to keep them engaged? Yeah. In? Yeah, okay.
Yeah, so that's just kind of what I'm kind of putting it out there that if with the center, you know, I think it's such a scale that we hopefully will be able to get, you know, donations, you know, I mean, large scale donations, if we can sort of scale it up to at this level. So that there's donations coming in, that can fund different projects. And so in the, in the books that I'm reading about setting up a nonprofit, they suggest you create a sort of a project group. And then they kind of get their funding, right that people can fund say they want to fund empathy in the school in, in schools, and they serve as a group working on empathy in schools, and they get funding for that, or there's other empathy, community mediation, or ethnic mediation, or bridging. And so having these different projects that would get funding and people could fund them, you know, kind of directly according to what they're inspired to fund.
So you're reading, you're doing homework on how to fund nonprofits, and you're feeling like since this is an impressive place, you think you'll be able to get real funding? Your understanding is that the ideal way to do it is to have project based funding. So maybe what would those projects be, for example,
and then if there's funding, there could be like a team that, you know, works on empathy in the schools. And they'd be, you know, a couple of the core group is is paid, you know, to organize it. And then you usually have some paid people that really are committed to the core work, and then with a group of volunteers are around that to support it with funding coming in for that specific project, with the empathy center being sort of the foundation, and almost like an incubator for these different projects.
Yeah, so you're thinking there for individual projects, you would need would want probably to have full time? Some several full time people overseeing these projects? Yeah.
And, yeah, because it's hard to, for people to stay and I'm looking like, what are we how do we get people engaged, committed, you know, putting in the work, like, we can't tell anybody almost do anything, because it's all volunteers, right? It's like, it's like, please do this. Versus like, here's these tasks that need to be done. Go do that. It's, it's that aspect to I see. It's, I mean, for building a center, it can't be done. This paid, you know, foundation to where people are really committed. And, you know, they have they've got their areas and they got to see it through and that yeah,
so so you're gonna want to be in a position to hire some people.
Yeah, and that they have commitment to to do it. Yeah. And so yeah, I feel hard
I guess bill, let's swing. Ready. Yeah. Yeah, I mean, i i It's like I said, At the beginning, I think it's coming up for things to do there sort of, in an ideal world is is too easy. I'll stop there. Sure.
So you said that thinking of things to do, there's too easy. And you got to drop standards.
It's such an ideal spot. And I guess the model, the model has to be there has to be a decision in some sense about the model. You know, is it going to be all raised money? Or what percentage is going to be raised money versus people who pay to come there? And again, you know, I don't know that. What's possible in terms of usage? It's there's obviously a huge opportunity. But there's big issues. There really are. I'll stop for a second. Sure.
So, um, again, content is great. But you're talking about the essentially the revenue flow, how much would be donated? How much would you could you expect from people who pay to do and go to the retreat, and dealing with those kind of nuts and bolts financial issues?
Right. And, you know, from a realistic perspective, you know, there's fire issue there. And I think that there's an evacuation issue, it's up at the top of the canyon, you know, you're not going to community might not be comfortable and might not be smart to have large scale events during fire season. Stop there.
Sure. So one of the concerns is that it is placed in fire, whether it's fire danger and fire season, especially the top of a canyon evacuation issues, now, their safety issues. And so it may not be, you know, a good idea to have large gatherings during fire season.
Yeah. And then the other thing is, it's, it's up above the old mission. And through this curvy road, that goes up to it, with very beautiful, expensive property along the way. And I'm sure those people don't want a lot of people driving up and down their road, and would be an obstacle. So the logistics obstacles for the ways that would be, I think, great to be able to have events there are significant and would involve community buy in for sure.
Yeah, so you're also concerned it's long, windy road to get up there. It's beautiful. But they're very expensive properties there. And you feel that the neighbors would have some concerns about having too much traffic there. And so some very important to get community buy in.
Yeah, but maybe things like basketball, where people come up in the kids come up in buses and things like that, that might be acceptable, for example, right? I don't. And, and also, I think, you know, if it's, if it's stuff people want to go to, if they care about it, and they're interested in it, they're more likely to agree to it. Right.
So in terms of buying, you see that if like, yeah, like a kid's basketball camp or clinic, whatever, and they came up in buses, that would the neighbors probably wouldn't be upset about the traffic issue there. But also to have events that would engage the neighbors so that they would get some buy in.
Right, which might not be weddings, for example.
I'm sorry, which not might be what might not be weddings, for example. Oh, it might not be weddings. Okay. Right. Okay,
so you know. I don't know. I mean, I could go on, but But that's
it, and I because it would be nice to be able to not just do fundraising, I think, anyway. I'm not sure. Yeah. So
you wonder that the neighbors may not like the wedding idea. And then you're also looking for a mix, where you wouldn't be totally relying on fundraising all the time.
Yeah, and I guess the last thing is, you know, I was kind of encouraged by Ed When and to think about other things like art stuff. And, you know, I have a son who's a great musician, and, you know, that kind of place is ideal for artistic residences of different kinds, where at the end of the residency, there's some sort of show. And community can come and see the show, and whether it's a concert or art show, or whatever. So you can combine people coming and either who are funded or who are paying for who are being taught, you know, or who are funded, and given grants to come and create. And then performances that pay the bills. If if you can do that kind of thing.
So another idea you had is artists in residence, and usually, once the residency is done, there's some sort of show of performance in art show or concert. And that that might be something that also the community would be very interested in.
Right. So I guess, before my time is up, I guess one of the questions is how purely you know how pure how narrowly defined is the is the empathic culture element.
So the question then is how narrowly defined is the pasha impacting culture?
Yeah, that's right. Sure. Linda? Yes. Okay. I'm here for
you. Oh, thank
you. So, yeah, I see, you know, thinking about what Dave, David just said, you know, I do see it sort of being broad. If you're going to make a financial goal of it, then you there would be empathy stuff there. But then there might be artistic things other, you know, other groups doing other things, basketball camp or whatever like that. I would have to say, I don't know how many people would come to a wedding. I don't think the traffic for a wedding would be that. That bad, but
Okay, so you're piggybacking on what David was saying about, you know, how broad do we want to make this? You know, besides the empathy circles, or what training you also could have other events like the artistic proposal that he put out there. And as far as weddings, you don't know how much traffic a wedding would generate. So
you know, when I was I was put down gender reveals, but that people have gotten really crazy with that.
Yeah, you would, you would think about gender reveal, but people. People have gotten really creative with that. Yeah. There
has to be somewhat toned down. Yeah. And then I noticed that we mentioned the fire I have to rescue cats from, from Santa Barbara from the fire. And, but I looked around, it didn't look like you know, it looked like a defensible space when I saw as far as the fires concerned.
And as far as Yeah, the fires that occur in California, you you think that the space is defensible that it could be controlled? Or exposure?
Yeah. Yeah, and yeah, and I like the the idea, it would be great to have like, an empathy circle retreat, while we have some artists and residents and, you know, some intermingling of people, where the art rubs off on the empathy retreat people and the empathy rather rubs off on the art artists,
yeah, you're going back to the art and retreats. And you can, it would be interesting to see how the empathy costume would feed off the art and the art of the empathy culture.
Right. And then, as far as the phases again, I haven't been there, but as I understand it, my feeling would be that you would kind of have that wing where that you have the kitchen and the conference room and then a few rooms and a residential area that would be renovated first, have a few, you know, events that would suit that size. And as things go on, and you can establish a revenue flow, then you start to renovate that other wing. And you know, you can expand
So you're, you're suggesting we're thinking about just renovating a wing at a time you haven't been there, but just, you know, the food, whatever, kitchen and renovate that and have that and then activities for that wing and then move on to generate income. And then is that, you know, comes to fruition just, you know, Pete moving through the complex in terms of renovation?
Yeah, thanks. I feel fully heard. Okay.
Larry, ready. Again, ideas all over the place. But in terms of generating income and generating interest and community buy in. We could, or it could be the center and everyone's brother, when they hire contractors to do renovations. One of the requirements for the contractors is to have some wooded interns or when it comes to construction, I don't know what they call apprentices. So you're, you're helping the community and you happen to training while you're getting the renovations done. So that generates interest colleges or technical schools nearby, when you talk about setting up technology for zoom and talks like TED talk or whatever, you could use some interns from various schools, to help with the project work, either do it and work alongside a professional, again, you're generating interest and eventually generating income. So you know, consider that as a place for where colleges and schools could utilize last our internship program ever dealt, definitely generate interest, get the news media out there, and the schools out there, and people will become interested in it. I'm sorry, I didn't pick who I wanted to. List. I just started talking. Oh,
Larry. Can you say Larry?
Did I say, Larry? Yeah. Thank you.
Hey, Linda. So I'm hearing you saying that you're getting a lot of ideas, and that when they contract construction workers to do the work, they could have interns participating with the contractors. And this could involve the local community colleges or universities or educational centers that people would be interested in doing an internship with the construction workers. And this would generate a lot of interest in the senator. And I think you also mentioned that I think you said television crews could get involved with that too.
Well, I think if when you start doing something like that, the the media, it would generate interest, and the media would show up. And that way, you're getting free advertisement, advertising to the community out to the community.
So yeah, you didn't say television, you said the media would get involved? And that way, it would be like free advertisement.
Yeah. Going back to what everyone was saying about projects, I wrote down professional grant writers, you can have people write proposals for grants for particular projects, or whatever, and use that center as the locale for what so you could have various projects going on. And the grants it once they're granted, once they are awarded, that's your your income, then you're gonna have to have somebody that's gonna have to be accountable, you know, because they're gonna want to know, whoever's paying the money. But want to know, you know, what are you doing? And how was that the money, the grant money? How was it working and benefiting the community? And is it doing what it said it would do in the grant? are you achieving what you said it would do in a grant.
So we'll also have space for professional grant writers to be there and the center to write the grants that would hopefully be awarded. And then they could also oversee that the money is used as it was stated in the grant appropriately.
Yeah. And I don't know if the grant writers have to actually be on site. But okay, that time is up.
And you're adding you're not certain if the grant writers have to live on site or be on site while they rented write the grants. Yes. Thank you. Thank you, Linda Berg. Larry, David will be my listener,
yes, I will. Thank you
I find it really inspiring to envision all of these possibilities.
Your spot, you're inspired by all these ideas.
And I am also inspired by the idea of it being self sustaining.
You like the idea of it being self sustaining.
So that, to me looks like offering educational presentations that could be on site, or hybrid.
So you're thinking about educational stuff, presentations on site or hybrid, I assume you mean online
and probably see us are continuing education units would be an area that seems to be highly likely, in local universities or with Zoom, it wouldn't have to be local universities could be worldwide, or I don't know how the CEOs might be limited to nationwide or statewide.
So you're thinking about a financing opportunity, as well as an educational opportunity and continuing education.
Right that the center could provide continuing educational units related to Carl Rogers empathic listening, demonstrated in empathy circles,
center, the center could provide education based in Carl Rogers and empathy circles
and I love the idea of an organic garden that sustains everyone who lives there with healthy non GMO food
you're excited about the idea of having organic garden healthy food non GMO
Thank you, David. I shall fully heard
the letter yesterday, I have no idea what I'm going to say.
I'm quite sure what we're about to say. Yeah.
Yeah, I mean, the place itself is other than the sort of institutional aspect of the architecture, it's kind of like 1960s school building architecture.
The architecture not quite crazy about the architecture.
The architecture is institutional but the the location is really spectacular. And and you just feel happy and excited to be up there. Yeah, of course, it was very green right now, which it won't be most of the time. But it is now. And there were fresh oranges on these trees I was picking that were delicious. And there was water running in the creek down below and the property runs all the way down in the water. And there's a hiking trail up into the hills. I mean, it's really a special special place which I guess is what inspired Charles to buy it
it's quite heavenly there with the oranges you could pick from trees and a trail and you hear the creek and just the nature is very inspiring kind of even healing by itself. So maybe that's how that was brother decided to buy it. Yeah,
yeah, I think so. And So I think it's an in gonna be an it's an enticing place to get people to come to and spend time at. I mean, I don't really know what it's like when it's very hot in the summer. Or, and I think people might be afraid to come and fire season and maybe one wants to avoid that. Actually, I don't know, even if you can protect it. I'm not sure when it wants to take the risk. I just don't know about that.
So, dreams aside and the extreme attractiveness of the location, I kind of in brackets for a little bit, you're again, going back to the thoughts about what are some obstacles that need to be overcome, for this to be a viable project. And some of the obstacles are local residents that we've talked about that might not want that much traffic, but now you're talking a lot about climate and Fire, fire season, and heat. And how realistic and wise would it be to have events and people there when it's really
hot? Well, during the during the fire season, the problem is the fire business is expanding overlap.
Do they have guessing? Yeah.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. And the fire season is expanding. You know, it used to be in the fall. But now it's, it's depends. And after a very wet winter, like this one, we there's a lot of growth. And then if you have a very dry summer, it increases the danger. Okay. But then I'll go, I'll swing back to the other side, which is, it's a pretty big community. I mean, the town itself has like 250,000 or more, it's a bedroom community for Los Angeles. You know, their Santa Barbara, UC Santa Barbara, university, California, Santa Barbara, there's a large community of people that I think would be interested in good programming. You know, they will, you wouldn't have to bring everybody in from out of town. Who would want to be involved?
So you're thinking of the risks, you're thinking of the opportunities, and one is that it's a bigger community 250,000. And they might want to have educational opportunities that they don't have to necessarily go all the way to LA for obtaining some kind of certificates or whatever that might be. Right? I feel hurt. Thank you. Edwin, would you listen to me, please. I admit I didn't, I didn't know a lot of the details that are coming up. Obviously, I've never even been to California. So I don't know much about fire season. And I didn't know that Santa Barbara is so big. So that all those details are definitely changing. Change changing the picture every time.
So you didn't know that much about California and especially Santa Barbara. So you're developing more of a picture now of the space which affects your ideas vision.
And, you know, we're in the very beginning of the brainstorming are called envisioning. So it's, it's normal, we're all learning and kind of more dreaming. And I'm sure that the people that the the group that will end up actually developing a more specific plan forward we'll have to do quite an in depth research with water what are the different factors that are playing playing a role in in the going forward?
Yeah, so the people doing the deep planning of the group will have to study all the different issues water all the technical stuff kind of really get into the, into the depths of it versus like kind of a superficial visioning maybe.
Or dreaming first. Out of in an ideal world I think somebody said today
Yeah, so it's the ideal world the dreaming what's what are the dreams in ideal world.
But if I if I summarize and they they sound like the agricultural element, then the educational component, and then the retreat, kind of just events for different Groups component. And then life events, on the lines of waiting. I'm not sure where the sports event would fall. But again, somehow serving the community is serving the empathy, movement, but also generating revenue and
wash it before. So it sounds like you're sort of categorizing the different events where the different events kind of have different headings to sort of explore. And then one of them is also the financial aspect, you know, generating an income, so kind of break it down.
That's how I function. But obviously, my dreams are mostly connected to the empathy and to the empathy movement. And something that I think Bill mentioned in the beginning, having the empathy facilitator training, having a an in person version, I think that would be a first and I'm, my thoughts are going towards how can we make that bigger and scale that up? I'm not quite sure. You're
thinking. You're thinking of how to have in person empathy trainings and scale that up, you're not quite sure how to do that yet.
And as somebody who's trained in psychodrama, and I love group therapy, I think this will be just like, you know, what Dave was saying it's a healing experience in itself. And I know that the psychodrama movement is pretty active in California. I'm not sure south or north, but I'm just thinking of different directions. And that would be one direction to consider. To think
about, yeah, you're you work with the psychodrama community, and they're big in California. So you think that could be another sort of an option for workshops to hold their in person?
Before you heard it, when,
okay, so how about we just open it for like 20 minutes or so to just non reflective listening just for general, you know, kind of brainstorming and the ideas or thoughts that come up? I did want to I mean, I'll start off by saying, in terms of the narrowly defined events defined, it's pretty much open, like the vision is an empathy center. And it's is a nonprofit, it'll be it's in education, to be training, teaching, and the mission is to build that culture of mutual empathy. And it's this can tie kind of anything into that, right. Like the arts. You know, I think the arts would be great, especially Chatrier change the institutional look, you know, how do we shift that, that, that institutional school look to be more creative. And so everything sort of on the table, I just wanted to address the fire, that fire did go through there before so they had fire the neighbor's house burned down. And somebody had said that the space is sort of like a fortress because it's has brick walls. And those mission of those tiled roofs, so under the roof is the cement slab, which on which is those clay tiles, so it has a lot of fire or resistance to it. And but there's a lot more, you know, they can be done to they used to have goats there, right, that would be eating up all the stuff and you know, I'm kind of thinking of terraces you know, like Italian, you know, those Italian places that are up in the mountains, they got all these terraces, you know, eventually kind of building some terraces that create this, you know, kind of more fire breaks to but also space for for gardening, kind of a terrorist gardening. So, just kind of those are just some other. Yeah, some ideas are just kind of open it up for a while you say anything that you want, and let's just kind of brainstorm here.
So I just had an idea that I had is that utilizing Los Angeles, a grant could be written to train teachers, and specifically, we could target a truck, you know, difficult area like Compton and LA, and then have the teachers come up, and then it would be free for the teachers, because it would be the grant would fund their their weekend or whatever it would be. So that's one idea that just came up.
And I'll add if you have an idea like that, I think you can think about hey, I want to make this happen. in there, right? And then how do we get funding for it? How do I build a team? So I've tried to look for, like, if it's a lender of mediation, like there's a mediation center, you know, that you can get funding for it. But as an organization, we would have more clout, you know, maybe to get funding because it's, Hey, this is pretty vague. This is, you know, it's kind of serious in that sense that we could build a mediation center, you know, you could be organizing that being the person that's paid, developing a team around it, etc. So I'm trying to think of specific projects or even, like, even think about projects you'd like to do, and how could you get it funded? or something? Yeah, I just throw that out.
I'm just curious about how, how to think about even given a variation of ideas, there's so many ideas. The renovation, I mean, there's stuff that has to be done, right, there's leaks in the roof in various places. And the the main dormitory building really needs to be completely redone internally. But the chapel is in very good shape, mostly, as far as I can tell.
So, you know, in the context of all these various ideas,
how are you going to prioritize what to do with the renovations? Because if somebody's going to start thinking about, well, we're going to bring teachers up, or we're going to do anything, there has to be an understanding of what the facility is that they're coming to.
Have a tour of that? What just gave everybody Yeah,
but yeah, I mean, you have to have committed to, you have to have committed to we're doing this this renovation, we're gonna have this number of beds, and this number of rooms and all that kind of stuff. So what's the process for making those decisions?
give you this space real quick, just so you kind of, let me just show you the buildings here. So you know, down in the, in the bottom right is the gym. So it's two basketball courts, you know, wood floors. This building here was they call it the sister's residence. So there's seven bedrooms or shared baths that are already ready to go, that's been renovated. It just needs furniture. And then there's a workshop space, a room with a little nice little porch. There. There's here is the kitchen. So it's a really, you know, big commercial kitchen with a big dining room and then a recreation room. And that doesn't need too much in terms of it wasn't a lot that was renovated a little bit, but it doesn't need too much. This building here was where the priests used to live, they had seven or eight rooms in here. And that's been renovated. So I actually got a room there. That's where my room is. And there's they're pretty big rooms that there are actually 400 square foot rooms, some of them so it's quite large. And there's seven of those. And then there's the chapel. And under the chapel is a basement. And that basement is sort of our next project to do. We cleared out all the stuff from the basement. And we're we just got the first dumpster. So there's a dumpster here, you know, on the lawn, not alone, but a parking spot. And we just filled the first one. There's just tons of old mattresses, you know, kind of junk furniture. So we're just starting to clear everything out. And there is the groundskeeper and his family, they live in the facilities here and they've been here for four years. And so he's the he and his father and their whole family's kind of living here and one of the rooms and so we cleared out under the the chapel. And it's a big, you know, recreation room and there's a nice room in the back for like workshops and it it does have that popcorn ceilings, which is the old 780 60s ceilings, it has asbestos in it. So we got to kind of clear that out. And then where to put it in a wood floor in there for you know, kind of a dance Yoga, you know, physical activities. And then these buildings here are was an old dormitory. This is there was a dormitory for almost like 80 people in these dormitories and this was a classroom building. thing. And so these two buildings is what needs to be renovated. And that's what we're trying to figure out is how to to renovate them. So and if you go to the website, you can see a photo tour, more in depth. So I just wanted to give you a bigger picture, kind of as we brainstorm here. And I think, Linda, you were about to say something, when I,
well, I'm thinking about going back to one bite at a time, the you have a different exposure, when you have people living, I'm talking about insurance, liability, when you have people living on premises, as opposed to coming out for a particular event and then leaving, and then I put in chat. Because sometimes I forget stuff, you know, Kimball you consider? Or can it be considered to just rent out some space to a coffee shop or bookstore or whatever that will generate what bookstore probably wouldn't work up there. But a that would generate income do you know, do you have to control the whole compound? Can you just rent out some space for as for whatever somebody you know, that will, of course, align with the empathic listening and empathy culture. And that will generate some income, if they you know, have a long term lease, five years, whatever. And as far as the renovations, I'm thinking murals on the wall. So you have art students come up there, and they can do you know, I'm thinking of ways to renovate and you're gonna use professionals, you're gonna need professionals and electrical, plumbing, roofing the whole bit, but you can also use some of the local talent, people that like to do artists that do murals, and they can show you a prototype or an example of what they're going to do. And then let them have a wall, let them have a room of whatever and, you know, mitigate some of the costs and at the same time, involve the community and, you know, still get the job done.
Yeah, what I'm thinking is a more of an iterative approach. So I set up a room there, and I'll be staying, you know, part time there maybe will probably be moving down there eventually. So it'll be so can I already start using the space are some spaces where you can already hold workshops, kind of small events, before all a lot of the renovations is done. So it can be incrementally used. And we had talked in the last circle, the sea bill, Zach, and Lou and I were thinking of going down for a weekend. So we could hold a little weekend or on weekend workshop, and then maybe do something to invite the community to, you know, a couple hour event. And I was thinking, Dave, if you want to go down, you know, with us, we'd go down for a weekend, stay there, you know, just have some mattresses on the floors. You know, and, you know, so you kind of stay there a little bit and kind of just to start thinking about the possibilities being there is kind of different, because you start thinking of things that can be done. And one thing I was kind of excited about that in terms of the arts. So John, she was very much into the arts and, you know, murals and stuff. She mentioned that too, so I shouldn't be pleased that you're mentioning that too, is here's the space, we're looking at building a swimming pool in this like here, right on the edge. So and then maybe a sauna, so it'd be a you know, it would make it more like a like a spa kind of, you know, aspects of my brother's we worked on and he's convinced now that we will put the swimming pool in there. So yeah,
you could rent out the space for a spa. Let the professionals that handled spas. Yeah, the community would love that. I would love that. You know, I can go get by. Relax, get my nails done. Do the sauna, do the swimming, you know, just chill out. Yeah. And the people in the community can have a membership to the spa. Now when I say that, I want to make it clear when you say a membership well, because I've been places where the community we had some timeshares and the community had memberships to the gym and they got a little upset because the people that were visiting there were using the gym and they wanted to use the gym and they felt like well I'm paying a membership fee so I should be able to come in here and use the machines whenever I want to. So you have that issue. But yeah, a spa you could have a membership to the spa and going with and I put it in chat what Larry was He's talking about farming, you know, Apple farming is a big deal is becoming a big deal, you can get a grant written for that and use some of that space to, you know, grow food in a different way. Rather than
water up there. Yeah, that's a super, it's a super dry area, it's real waters a real issue up there,
where you got to have to have plumbing to get to the pools. So water will flow from somewhere. Yeah, but it's environmentally friendly. So, you know, you could have a project. I mean, someone write a grant for that, and say, Yeah,
well, somebody else mentioned, they would actually pay to live there, like, you know, like, pay a couple 1000 A month or whatever, to work on some projects that they're doing, you need to live somewhere. And they have sort of a community of practice. And that there was rooms rented out, you know, spaces rented out for that. So that was like another idea.
So do these rooms have a kitchen area? kitchenette? If I'm staying there, where do I cook? Where do I eat? The one down the mountain, there
is an actual there's actually an industrial kitchen. So it would be group cooking, you know, a group cook. I mean, it's serious. Yeah, if you look at the website, there's a photo tour of the space and it's full, you know, industrial kitchen. So it'd be for group eating, and there's a big dining room.
So could there be a culinary school?
My brother he's talking about a cook that he knows that if she would come up there and she does all natural foods and so about having cook Yeah, exactly. You That was when I was first ideas.
If that's the case, she or anybody could rent that space. But with the understanding and the lease, it would say this, you know, the food is a culinary school limited to X amount of people and the type of food they will cook would be you know, all natural vegan and blah blah, whatever.
Yeah, her is his uncooked raw foods. Hmm. Yeah, it's it's a big hill. It's, you know, it's let me just show you this
shot for Linda.
But not all walls.
It's a big hill. It's like 350 feet up. Right. So when you drive up, so that's why I was thinking of terracing. I mean, this is like, you know, dry gardening terracing, maybe getting a grant where you could do some terracing of this and also kind of create a firebreak around the property. I've used all these trees are growing up there, which is a little concerning, because that creates a it's more overgrown now than it was previously he was, I think this was after the fire, so he kind of cleared out a lot of stuff. So it's starting to get kind of quite full of vegetation. So that's for the goats. That's for the goats. Those goats up there.
Again, environmentally friendly.
Go ahead, jump in whatever ideas you got to try to stimulate.
Sure, I'll piggyback on Linda's idea about the aquaculture I think that's a good idea. I know that I have aquariums and so I use that aquarium water for the plants. And it's fantastic. And so I think you could do something that's, you know, water conscious, was having a small pond, and then the water from the pond is circulated into the, you know, to a greenhouse area or something like that. And then you want if you have to grant for that you can just kind of invite a local school or a classes as Santa Barbara, who's into, you know, eco culture and things like that, you know, have come up and run it. So I just wanted I thought that was a very good idea. Also, let's not forget the hot tub.
Oh, yeah. It's like hot tub, sauna, and food. Cool. Definitely. That's and the hot tub is looking out over Santa Barbara.
Yeah, that's just spectacular. Loud. Oh, two.
Oh, yeah. And he got to have beers while you're like, Take Google Earth, you know, which is what that is. There's a link to Google Just scan across those properties there's he's just mansion after mansion, when they got these pools on the edge, they looking at Oprah Winfrey is only 15 minutes away, or houses or 100 million dollar properties. And you know, the Harry and Megan, you know the prints guy. Yeah, it's just like 15 minutes away too. So 10 minus theta, which is very wealthy area.
Going back to the arc of farming, I saw this on something, YouTube, Facebook, but these guys have built these big, I didn't realize how big your tub or whatever had to be that they were growing fish. They were whatever you whatever you call it grown fish. But anyway, they had a fish farm huge tanks with the fish in it. And they had constructed this thing where the water would circulate out of the pond up which, and then water the plants as it comes back down. And it was really interesting. And they were talking about how the, you know, the fish, whatever, whatever. increments, and whatever. But it just it helped fertilize the plants. And so they were just, you know, using the water over and over, and it was circulate. And I thought that was really interesting. And the plants were above the tank, of course, so the water would go up. It's like water the plants and then come back down. It was really interesting. So the residue from the fish. I was trying to think of a PC
thinking more, again, more towards the institutional survival of the place. And my years in nonprofits have taught me that it's always a good idea to have a backbone of a few organization. That would be at least in Europe, it's ideally to have some kind of steady income. And around that backbone, you could organize all kinds of Site Activities, from agriculture, to education to weddings, and could send they could be bringing revenue or they could be grants. Both. And what that backbone will be from I think, is is the question, at least in my mind. As an empathy center, I see. Two major pathways there. One is government. The other one is some larger philanthropist. I mean, this, this, all these millionaires, multimillionaires billionaires around the place, could they be invited to contribute to some kind of a cause that would. And that contribution would be on a regular basis. I'm not quite sure what I'm talking about. But so it's either a group of people that are willing to commit with a regular contribution, or a local government or federal government or state government being willing to provide that backbone. Counting on on grants is not realistic. It's not a sustainable source of I think, even even if there are the bigger educational grants, it's a lot of work. And even with volunteers. I think it's just a beautiful place. And it's, it deserves to have more longevity built into it. In terms of management, as, as a visionary, that I'm invited to be here, I would say what is the backbone? And what are some of the side projects? And it could be that the backbone is more the agricultural piece might be that might be more realistic, especially with the the fire danger. I don't know. I'm not an expert there at all. But those are my thoughts that we need to have some kind of a central vision. Again, this thing is either agricultural or some kind of ecological climate change Think Tank residents, or a place for political bridging, change that would be funded. That, to me seems like the biggest place where that we could locate ourselves as an empathy movement. And then on the other side, side projects can be bigger or smaller. But there's this need for some kind of a backbone
retreat centers that I know of like esslyn, which I lived at for a year, they just have a series of programs like there's week, day programs four and a half days in a weekend, and it's just constantly repeated, they have people coming in. So that's sort of the workshop, model, people come in, you know, pay, it can be a residential. You know, people stay over, you know, they take the classes and they have a pool, they can swim in kind of relax, you know, between do the hikes and things like that. So you just kind of have to schedule workshops. That's kind of one, the philanthropy is that it's raising donors having donors, and that's having a board and part of the job of the board is to go out and raise money, you know, to ideally have you know, well to do people who can actually have connections and get others to donate. So,
I know my field. So in psychology, the biggest and most valuable revolution, I think that happened in around 2000 2001, was thanks to rich people trusting the leader of the positive psychology movement and saying here, here's 120 million start this anti genocide, sentry wanted to start and something that in education, we you can't even think about this, this, this type of big moves. But now, positive psychology is still in at UPenn, mostly, but it's, it's changed the whole scenery of our field. So I don't know, I, it's all it all comes down to budgeting, this is a huge place. So maintenance of that huge place would be a serious question. And I don't know if just paying for workshops is so. So that would be the business model, not the nonprofit, it would be more than the business model and kind of counting entirely on revenue. I don't know how, how realistic that is. But I haven't seen the numbers. So if somebody kind of makes it an estimate of how much would it cost to maintain the place? And how much would you have to charge for workshop and hopefully thinking, in longer lifespan than just let's just do something for five years, and have a lot of fun. So, in order for it to be to have longer, I think whatever the board ends up being, hopefully we'll have this. This this idea of empathy can be seen in different ways. And it could be various applications. That's my thought.
Yeah, I know you're familiar. I'm sorry, Dave. Go ahead.
You're muted. You're muted, Dave.
I was just gonna say, you know, it's one of the wealthiest communities in the world, Santa Barbara. And, you know, all of the big Hollywood people have weekend homes up there. I mean, there are many, many, many billionaires there. And, and other people who have less money, but plenty and you know, I think one of the missions or one of the central if we can develop a clear mission that we can sell to them. You know, that that would be the place to be looking for the initial real support from and so it would be our job in a sense to come up with that vision and to then in code, go down there and invite people to come up and have a talk about it, you know, what we're thinking about? What do they think that sort of stuff that goes beyond what just the local neighbors think. And try to tap into some of that, I have some ideas of how to do that, actually, of how to tap into some of those people. But we'd have to have decided to like what we're trying to do, or what we think we're trying to do, I think, I guess we kind of know what we're trying to do. But, you know, it's what, what is sell? Proposition number one? You know, just a clear cut package of this is things we want to do. Will you help us basically,
and I put the mission, the vision and mission statement in the kind of the current play sets.
But so one could, one could, you know, come up with sort of a, in an ideal world where somebody gave us some real money. What would we do with it? Like, imagine we didn't have the money problem? Imagine we had a reasonable amount of money? What would we do? You know, you would you want to hire people? So who are the who are the types of people you would want to hire? What would the what would the projects actually be? Just to think about it maybe like that, to go and try and you know, come with a real more than just a vague proposal. And we're looking for ideas, like we have these these ideas, if we had money, this is what we would do, you know, and see if we could get some money.
But that was the model. And we have the vision of building that culture of empathy. And I put in the vision and the mission. And can we get people inspired about that? Say, Yeah, this is really something that we need in our society is, I want to move this sort of vision forward in the culture, there's this dysfunction within the government, right? The sides aren't talking to each other, it's causing a lot of dysfunction. Can I support an endeavor and a project, you know, work to kind of heal that divide is one point, can I bring different ethnic groups together and heal those divides? Can I bring empathy training into the schools? And that's like another project? And which of those project? Here's several projects that we have, which of those would you like to fund? And they mentioned that in, you know, the books I've been reading about nonprofits that people want to, they can support the administration, there's like an administration cost. Some people don't want to support that they want a specific project, like empathy in the schools, where you divide different have different sections, and then projects, and then people can define that decide which of those they want to fund the donor for donors. And then we need to make the case like, to those people, you know, make the connection and say, Is this something this is what we can do if you give us $2 million, or whatever? $100,000. This is what we can accomplish. And I this so maybe, I just mentioned, there is a in San Diego at the University of San Diego medical school, they just got $100 million donation for an empathy and compassion research in the medical field. It's called the Danny something senator for empathy and compassion. It's in San Diego so 100 million. Yeah.
So so maybe the idea is to try to raise some money to have some resident experts that are hired in specific things that we're interested in having programs around like you're saying then Oregon, those people you know, have RA are then able to organize things that residences residencies or you know, depolarization, events, whatever, whatever the things are, that that their focuses. So, one has like part of the, what used to be where the priests lived is where the where the fellows live, basically. And one raises money for them to begin with. And they are the core infrastructure in addition to like a cook in the groundskeeper and things like that, and from there when goes on to organize events that are maybe funded or people pay to come come to depending on what's going on.
Yes, like the program leads that they put together to the program. And actually elite have
to be able to find people and hire them and have money to be willing to come and all that and feel like they've got a sustained, they're not going to come and then they're going to lose, something's going to fall apart. Bill, you wanted to say something before?
Oh, yeah, just I mentioned and Edwin's familiar with his book green Gulch is one model. It's the Zen Center. They run a restaurant called greens. That's all organic. And a green Gulch is a farm in Marin. And then their restaurant is in San Francisco. And then they have actually another residency in San Francisco. Zen Center residency. So that's something where people are living and working and, you know, have part of that model. But I thought that that that was good. And then what I see as far as the steps is that everything kind of revolves around creating the nonprofit. Because when I was started with, you know, with Edwin and stuff, and I looked for money or something like that, they the first thing they would say is give me your nonprofit number. And, you know, that was the first thing other than that, you know, I could wax poetic, but they didn't care. I know, I know. And never I never underestimate Edwin's enterprise and energy. And I know you're doing that. But I think that that when you say like, let's get a grant, then if you have that nonprofit, then you know, then you can say, Okay, here's the nonprofit, this is the project. And then you can do that. It all centers around that nonprofit, I believe.
Yeah, absolutely. So in terms of next steps, do you see any sort of next steps you'd like to be involved in? Like we had one next step was going down there for a weekend. And the other any kind of projects are next steps. I'll mention another one that I can think of is have more of these visioning circles as a way of people sort of being introduced to the project to the center, we had the Saturday empathy circles that were more about preparing for the training, but it could be sort of combined that you come you brainstorm about creating an empathy center, you learn empathy, circle, practice, and sort of a way of connecting with people and solving the ideas, they come up with ideas and then see who can kind of grab a hold of IDEA and sort of run with it or Yeah, or other ideas for kind of next steps how you'd like to be, you know, you'd like to do.
Well, I like the idea of going down there, I can research on the internet, and then creating like, the facilitation training, integrated with the nature there. And then coming up with like, Okay, here's would be the retreat over two days. And then having the curriculum that you know, the times were doing this from this, you know, the food and stuff like that. And that would be the next step that I see.
Well, the next step I see is what I agree will fall at that level, is that you need a poor source of income, you need a steady source of income. And then you have all the little side projects and I don't know if a restaurant you know, a vegan restaurant on natural foods, and you use the foods that you I mean, they produce that you bro I don't know, but I do agree with her that you need to it could benefit from knowing that you have a steady source of income in case you know, the grant runs out or whatever. And then you stop. So that would be I guess, my night and next session brain
brainstorming what yeah,
yes. What you Yeah, yeah. I don't know if if the county where this is located if they have you know, the the nonprofit I've worked for, after I retire with mediation. We had we were subsidized by the county and our mediations came from the vast majority of them came from small claims court, where the judge would order them to mediate at our facility because we our fees were embarrassingly cheap And like I always tried to get them to increase the fees, but they wouldn't but you know it, but we were subsidized by the county. So we knew that money was coming in plus we had the money from the cost of the mediations that we charged, we had that come in, and we never did get around the fundraising. But the county was our primary. We knew we had that source of income. So I don't know what your county has need for OSHA to be it for the on the project. So
well, I just mentioned it to begin with my brother's kind of financing the setting up so his LLC owns the property and the nonprofit would lease the property from his LLC. And he has talked about if the property value would go up, he might even gift the property to the nonprofit is a tax write off. So that's, you know, that that's a possibility. But it would be, you know, organizing the the nonprofit, and if it seems like your skills and interest, Linda is mediation, right? It's like, How could there be a mediation center? Or something there? You know, like, what, who are the mediate? What's the situation in Santa Barbara with the mediation community? And would they be interested in, you know, some kind of training, group training? And then they can also, you know, kind of be empathic based mediation? Yeah. Yeah. Conflict Resolution. Conflict Resolution? Yeah.
Restorative with transformative. Yeah. Mediations.
Okay, anything, Larry, I mean, I know you love empathy circles.
Do I think about collaboration with local universities, and yeah, finding out who teaches things like organic gardening or ecology projects, things that are also sustainable and related to climate change to create a garden, that would be, again, a teaching center for students and internships, to be involved in that, and how you could get that organized.
So you're interested in looking into that more like, it's a type of gardening, there would have to be kind of terrorist gardening because there's not a lot of space unless it's terrorist. In terms of universities, there's the University of Santa Barbara, which is 18 minutes from there. And then there's also the Pacific Institute, which I don't know, if you let if you know, it, it's a big training center for psychology. And, and we actually are having an empathy circle next Monday. And one of the people that professors and administrators from that school is going to be in the empathy circle on Monday. So we're kind of making connection with them. And that and that center was also started with something similar model, in that it was somebody who inherited a whole bunch of money from General Motors, they had this property, and then they got someone to develop the school in it. And so at least the as I understand it, the the nonprofit leased the property, and then they developed a really well known Pacific Institute in Santa Barbara, really well known school for sort of psychology and counseling, therapy and stuff. I'm gonna have to check out. Okay,
so this has been real interesting. Yeah.
See you tomorrow. And as many of these as you'd like, you know, take notes and come back, sign up further circles. And, like I mentioned, we're gonna try to do more of these on Saturdays to I'm going to talk to Bill and Kathy and Larry about that. We'll do. Okay, thanks. Okay, so anything else in closing, any closing thoughts? Dave, are
we I think we should get our act together and try to raise some money down there. I think that's the biggest pool of money. That's the most obviously, in our faces.
I think so. Yeah. And
just, you know, a question of putting our ideas together and, and working them through properly so that, you know, in the investment world, they call it a book. So they've got, you know, they call it a deck, that's what they call it a deck, so that we have a presentation that holds water that we can substantiate, and we should try to raise some real money. That's what I think. And then then, you know, why not? Look, we have something we never had before, which is this place, it happens to be in one of the wealthiest places in the world. I think we should try to take advantage and it's a left, it's a lefty place, you know, we should try to take advantage of it. And that means being ambitious about our proposals, basically, I think and not be trying to nickel and dime our way through the whole thing. I mean, unless we have no choice. And since there's no, you know, we're not under a time constraint, like we got to get running in there tomorrow. We're not we're, you know, we that's what I think we should do.
Yeah. And in the funding, Charles said, he's willing to put in, you know, two and a half $3 million to kind of for the renovation, like it goes fast, but to kind of jumpstart things,
right. And I think the important thing is we have the place. And so I think, you know, we need to come up with a, we need to, like I said, Imagine somebody gave us a bunch of money. Well, what would we then do? I really think that's what we need to think about, instead of thinking about, we don't have any money, and we're going to try to raise a little money. I think, that idea under if it was somewhere else, maybe that would be right, but it's not. Yeah. You know, and so, and I actually know, people that are plugged in there. So I would, you know, I will, I can ask about how we would go about I mean, I think finding people to talk to is not going to be the hard part, the hard part is coming up with a clear idea of something that we could actually execute, not just something that we can dream about, but something that if we actually had the money, we would be able to execute it.
Yeah, that's it, you know, putting those decks together those ideas? Definitely.
You know, and because if you raise real money, then you have to be able to bring it's like your concern, you know, so we're gonna pay, if we raise real money, then you're gonna have hired people. But how do you get, you know, and the better the people are that you hire, the greater your possibilities are. But you know, we're, we're an organization in its infancy, in some sense. And so how do you do that? What kinds of people do you bring in? And how do you attract people, but it's a beautiful place, a beautiful part of the country. So And presumably, you start with young people, and then I was just an event and an event. At a nonprofit, I don't want to say the name of it, but there were lots and lots of young people really smart, really engaged doing amazing things. And so there's a lot of people, there's a lot of people, one has access to so anyway, that's, that's what I think we need to do is sort of be ambitious about what's possible there. And try to raise some money for it.
Yeah. Yeah, I'm inclined towards that vision to it's like, the fight getting donors, funders having a clear proposal, and also having people that can write that up to, like, you know, it's like, there's people who have that skill that can really, you know, make a really good looking presentation and sort of make the case, I think the underlying vision is really good and unique. It's just how to not have packages, but how to articulate it in a compelling way. And maybe, that's like the story capital of the world. I mean, it's like, you know, Hollywood, you know, storytelling is like, that is the place down there.
Yeah, and to maybe, you know, really focus on really doing, trying to really do conflict resolution. I mean, empathy, circles are just the core practice, right, but to actually be able to do bring in people who need to face with be face to face with each other and think about doing that. So we can imagine, try to imagine the kinds of things we've talked about for a long time, but actually doing them there. And maybe people would be willing, you know, there's people there who would be willing to fund things that don't work, just with the hopes that they might work. You know.
Okay, great TV continue, just continue thinking about it and start, we're documenting this and take those steps. So Violetta.
I don't think I'll be able to come to any more of these You're in circles, if I have to well, but so I'm committing to, I could help with clarifying that strategy of. I've done that multiple times for teams that I've been a part of, or other teams that have been helping clarifying ideas. Obviously, empathy is my sweet spot. I've spent most of my life professional life researching yet. So I have Dave ideas are not lacking, there's plenty of thoughts about what could be done. It's more, I think, question of putting them together, making making it clear, clearer, clearer, as much as possible direction. And I've written many grants that could help with that, if if we get there, um, I've done fundraising I could help with someone
could help us clarify or focus that would be?
I, I, I could do that.
And on that page is the vision and mission statement, which is maybe the start, it's kind of fleshing that out. And then what's the next step after that? Yeah,
I do have to say those work best in person. So whenever the the key players, whatever the board or whoever will be making the strategic planning, what the stakeholders should be all the stakeholders should should play some kind of a role. So they could feel like they're authors, but then the board should be starting to flesh it out, as the two of you are saying and start kind of talking to people ASAP. Then the first conversations will be trials, and we'll see okay, what are the questions they want to know? What are what are some answers we we have to have in advance before we go to those talks? Some, some of them will want media attention, some of them will, will just want to change. So it depends. Depends who was kind of knowing your targets? Well, you people.
You know, there are people there that buy paintings for $150 million. There you go. Yeah. Which me? And not just one painting? Yeah. So if they can help make the world a safer place, then.
Yeah. As you said, Be ambitious and and talk about how, how things could change. So this is more community psychology rather than clinical psychology, but how communities could change. And then as communities change, how could societies change? But those are my directions of thought. Thank you, we'll be in touch probably, or when and whenever you feel like, there's something
about the nonprofit, I'm just trying to get a go through it. I'm just starting the paperwork, you know, the all the forms. I, I, I wish I would have started the nonprofit before because now I might have to we might have to do the long version of the form, which is 26 pages versus a three page easy, you know, application. So
why is that?
If your make less if you anticipate making less than $50,000 in three years, you can do the easy form. If you anticipate doing more than $50,000 You have to do the full 26 page, you know, detailed form. So if we had had them and the board, yes. Okay. But pick a board. Yeah.
Different. Do you have the social enterprise thing in California as a legal entity? Which means will see a nonprofit?
Yeah, it's there a different version? I think. I'm not sure if I think we're gonna go to a 501 C three, educational charity, it's a charity, okay, subcategory of education. And I'm trying to get familiar with it. So if we when we do talk to a lawyer that we kind of have a picture of the details, I don't have you set up that nonprofit 501 C three or just been involved in them or
I am a friend of mine is setting up a social enterprise. And I know only nine states do it. I know Illinois does, as a social enterprise, you could have revenue that you have to prove will not be for just accumulation of gains. But as a nonprofit revenue is tricky. And you have to go more towards grants and you're obviously tax deductible and so I have no idea if California has a social enterprise and if that would even work with your brother wanting to give This big amounts of money.
And then tax deductions is a big part of it is also its tax deductions and the donor part of it and you know, for their tax deduction, it does seem like the 501 C three kind of the standard is kind of the safe bet those are other things are kind of, not as clearly defined.
Yeah, yeah. It's,
I need to go. Okay.
Final word, Larry. Before we go,
education, empathy, environment, ecology, internships, and tell Oprah
borrow sugar. She's in the neighborhood house. Right. Yeah. Okay, great. Thanks, everyone. has a great thing, y'all.