“We have loads of friends on Facebook, but none in our streets”. During my time in the tightest knit community I have ever experienced, this quote was something that stuck with me the most. In a time when people measure their friends based on their social media followers, the ecosystem showed me the true meaning of friendship and community. While traveling through the rural parts of Ireland, we saw different examples of communities, and some stood together stronger than others. The ecovillage in Cloughjordan was our first experience witnessing an Irish community. With only one hundred and fifty people living in the eco village, they all knew each other very well, enough to know everyone’s background story. Residents of the eco village, have the same interest and ways of living. They share a bond of trying to shrink down their ecological footprint, and help save our planet. Their sense of community stuck with me, because it is one unlike any I have seen in America. Yes, there are rural towns that come together, but not every neighbor has the same goal in mind. The eco villages goal is to raise awareness about the global climate change and ways to live in an eco friendly environment. While
staying at the hostel in the eco village, we experienced how the residents live. It gave us a great first hand experience and opened our eyes to see how much water we waste, and some realized their personal lack of recycling back in the states. Not only do they all have the same goal in mind, but they all act like a giant family. All the kids played outside together, riding their bikes, playing basketball and teaching themselves how to unicycle. Even with access to technology, the kids played outside and enjoyed playing with their friends. As much as we experienced communities, we became one. Many of us Roger Williams’ students came on this trip knowing maybe one person and having a few familiar faces. Despite our different backgrounds and majors, we came together to become a community that represented Roger Williams outside of the classroom. I am thankful we also were able to become part of the ecovillages’ community during our short period of time spent there together.