- Reason for Loan
- Community Impact
The purpose of this loan is to capitalize new housing and infrastructure, and to refinance our existing mortgage and other loans at a lower rate. The net effect of this effort will be to reduce our monthly payment by about $1600 and provide an increased revenue stream of some $2000 per month. Additional savings are mentioned below.
Capital Improvements: $220,000
Mortgage (currently at 8%): $480,000
Additional Debts: $150,000
Breakdown of Proposed Capital Improvements:
- Guest Housing units: $120,000 (will result in $2,000 per month increase in revenue)
- Infrastructure / Planning / upgrades: $53,000 (Phase one temple deck; Garden and Farm Expansion, use permit; walking trail; temple improvements; community center upgrade; etc.)
- Power System: $40,000 (This investment will pay for itself in under 8 years through reduced generator, gas, and battery costs.)
- Solar Water Heater: $7,000 (This investment will pay for itself in under 5 years through reduced propane use)
The values and unique patterns of living expressed at Polestar, once set into motion and established, have the potential we believe, to continue well beyond the lives of our current participants. “Simple living and high thinking’ (as Yogananda called it); a culture based on mutual respect and kindness; an understanding of our purpose here and of the privilege of being of service to each other; and the aspiration of each individual soul for a deep connection to Life; all are ideals that, once nurtured, can grow and thrive in the garden of our communities.
Since its creation in the year 2000, Polestar has hosted hundreds of programs, retreats, workshops, classes, service projects, performances, apprenticeships and adventures for students of all ages. Our core ideal is the power of community in education; that it ‘takes a village’ to not only raise a child but to ensure a connected, fulfilled, and meaningful life for all. Through our on-going service projects, many of them with other schools and non-profits, we have forged many deep connections which are expanding this concept of service in the greater community. Polestar provides a drug and alcohol free environment for all to enjoy. This is especially helpful for those who struggle against these things and for the many youths who need role models that can demonstrate all the amazing fun, creativity, adventure and joy that can be had without them.
As a multi-generational community, Polestar’s daily life is full of opportunities to connect with friends of all ages. We hold this to be an especially valuable part of the magic of community: the opportunity to learn and grow with a wide variety of people of all ages and temperaments.
The Gardens at Polestar have to be seen (and eaten from!) to be believed. With prodigious avocado, banana, and vegetable crops, we currently grow more than half of our daily food. Our fruit and nut orchard, which includes mango, citrus, lychee, soursop, rollinia, star fruit, abiu, macadamia nuts, cashews, and much more, was planted 5 years ago and is already producing. We have very ambitious plans for expanding our sustainable agriculture projects and the coming years will only get better. We also produce about 90% of our electrical power from the sun and more than adequate rainfall supplies all our needs for water. The lifestyle at Polestar then, along with being generally wholesome and uplifting, is certainly easy on the earth, and largely sustainable. Commenting on all this after he had toured the grounds and garden, a Hawaiian Elder noted “You are truly Hawaiian”!
Your much-needed investment will allow these many initiatives already underway to continue to ‘bear fruit’ – Mahalo!
Incorporated as an educational non-profit (501c3) in the year 2000, Polestar has dedicated the last 13 years to: “providing dynamic opportunities for learning through the creation of residential learning centers and intentional communities that offer educational classes, workshops, mentorships, and apprenticeships....and to promote and enhance creative life-long learning for all ages." Founders and current directors Ann and Michael Gornik have a combined 70-year history of successful community building; teaching and directing schools; mentoring youth; guiding workshop and family camps; meditation and yoga; coaching team athletics; producing community-based cultural, musical and dramatic performances and events, as well as in residential and commercial construction. Polestar’s core group includes a wealth of experience in community living including organic gardening and permaculture, animal husbandry, technology and digital arts, midwifery, art, music, and drama, architecture, and much, much more.
Polestar began operations in Sonoma County, California in the summer of the year 2000. Early years included a residential learning center, ongoing spiritual, educational, and cultural events, and apprenticeship opportunities for young adults. Unable to find suitable land for expansion, Polestar moved to the Big Island in early 2005. Within three years, the new land was purchased and the new community was under construction. The years that followed produced a wealth of opportunities for Polestar to serve and expand that continue to this day. With gardens, greenhouses, photovoltaic systems, houses, temples, and much more to be designed and created, the building of Polestar has been not only a primary educational event, but a large part of our spiritual practice as well. Students from all over the world have come to help, to learn, and to add their unique energy to this creative process and we are deeply grateful for their contributions! Many of them have found their experience here to be transformational. All during this time, Polestar continues to host community service projects, youth camps, yoga and meditation for the benefit of the greater community.