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For over 15 years CAREL (initially the EcoPartners Project of CRESP-Cornell University) has been working with rural residents of the Dominican Republic to create sustainable social models that integrate traditional village living with truly appropriate technology, particularly micro-hydroelectricity and wireless internet access. This support has mostly been provided on an onsite individual-community basis. Several technical workshops have been delivered in other locations. But as interest in participatory community technology has grown, it has become increasingly apparent that we need to create a teaching facility where groups can come for classes and workshops. Land was purchased in El Limon several years ago, and construction of a classroom and office building started, but progress has been slow. Now it's time to get the building finished, and instructional activities under way.

The Rural Center will function as an open university, run by and for rural residents. Facilities will include classroom and assembly space, a dining facility, housing for participants, and an outdoor common area under the mango trees.

In addition to technical instruction, the Center will continue to develop a cultural program that includes both traditional and outside elements.

The photos below are from previous work camps at the Rural Center.

Click here for a detailed Rural Center proposal in English and Spanish