April – May, 2013 Riley volunteered as a permaculture consultant at SoFair Farms EcoVillage in Fairfield, IA. While there, she worked alongside friends and colleagues, and collaberated with with SoFair founder Tom Greene to bring his vision of an ecologically designed, sustainable community one step closer to reality.
Riley and other volunteers lived on-site while drawing up plans for market gardens, integrated animal systems, orchards, ponds, and an apiary, and also helped with some beginning stages of renovation on the property’s existing farm house.
During that time they were also able to implement several small aspects of the design, including: building a chicken coop, repurposing old wooden pallets by making them into compost bins and cold frames, creating a vermicompost station, building a solar oven out of found materials, and building and planting hugelkulture beds.
Riley keeps tabs on SoFair’s progress and stays in contact with the Tom via Facebook. She looks forward to the next time she is able to visit and lend a hand.