Camphill Communities California is a life-sharing community for adults with developmental disabilities and of all abilities, located near Santa Cruz, California. Our vision of community living involves relationships of mutual respect, ongoing education, meaningful work, and natural circles of support. Our mission is to create a community that supports all individual abilities and recognizes the potential of every person.
Residents of Camphill California are dedicated to caring for the land using organic and biodynamic practices. During our long growing season, we tend to our six properties of land and gardens, producing a few vegetables, and including a small orchard with stone fruits donated to us by our wonderful neighbors. One of our main day activities is gardening, as well as producing and processing herbs. Our herb crew is a favorite work activity, and includes the creation of a soothing herb tea and delicious culinary cooking mixes.
In addition to gardening, residents create beautiful products in our weaving studio, crafting a variety of hand-woven house hold and gift items. Some Camphill residents participate in volunteer opportunities in the wider Santa Cruz community, internships, and supported employment programs.
Camphill California is an anthroposophical organization, and is inspired by the teachings of Rudolf Steiner, a philosopher and social reformer. It is founded on the principles and ideals of Dr. Karl König, an Austrian pediatrician who created the intentional community movement for children and adults with special needs.
Click here for more information about daily life at Camphill California, including the cultural and spiritual aspects.
“One of the most beautiful ways in which human beings can live together is when one person develops toward the other; when in the realm of the soul one human being is becoming through the other. This is precisely the way in which human community can be most wonderfully established.”
Camphill California is a nurturing, dynamic community where a dedicated group of individuals of all abilities live, learn and work together.
Our vision of community living is grounded in Anthroposophical principles in alignment with the Camphill movement, and involves relationships of mutual respect, ongoing education, meaningful work, and natural circles of support. We strive to work out of and sustain our community based on the following three spheres of life: spiritual/cultural, soul/social and physical/economic.
Community Map of Camphill California
(hover your mouse over the map to see the various building names)
A Brief Community History
Camphill Communities California was founded in 1997, and opened its doors in 1998, thanks to the group of the founding parents “California Friends of Camphill” as well as key founding Camphill coworkers from other Camphill communities, who here to create a Camphill initiative for adults. Camphill California, which initially started as one home on a single property, has now grown to a community of over 40 residents located on over seven acres on six properties, all within a two-mile radius in the Soquel foothills of Santa Cruz County. Camphill communities California is a diverse community that strives to cultivate human relationships among people of all abilities through shared living, and learning and working together.
Inspired by the teachings of philosopher and academic, Rudolf Steiner, Camphill California is an anthroposophical organization that is part of an international movement for social change. Pediatrician Karl König founded the first Camphill school for children “In need of special care” on Camphill Estate in Scotland in 1939. Today Camphill has become a world-wide movement of intentional communities and initiatives that work with children, youth and adults; practicing and promoting inclusive social change.
Frequently Asked Questions
Camphill Communitites California is a life-sharing community for adults with developmental disabilities. We are located on 6 acres of land in Soquel, CA between the north shore of Monterey Bay and the Santa Cruz Mountains.
The first Camphill communities were founded in Great Britian and Europe by Austrian doctor Karl König (1902-1966). Armed with the belief that community was an essential component of healthy social and spiritual life, Camphill villages were created for adults with and without disabilities to share their work and home lives together and to mentor and support one another.
All Camphill Communiites are inspired by the teachings of Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925) who understood human beings as a totality of body, soul and spirit. Steiner’s philosophy and its practical applications constitute a body of knowledge known as Anthroposophy.
Camphill California welcomes a a wide range of short term and long term volunteers. The interests and experiences of these men and women vary. Many are introduced to Camphill through connections with Waldorf Schools, or from interests in working with adults with developmental disabilities. Visit our Volunteer page for more information, or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Camphill Communities California is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and all contributions are tax-exempt. Your gifts are important to us and help us to maintain and expand our exceptional programs and recruit gifted and dedicated caregivers to our community. For more information contact email@example.com.