Work with a Meaning
Loch Arthur is very much a working Community. We run two farms and a garden, care for our woodland, make cheese and other dairy foods in our large creamery, produce bread, wooden products and woven goods in three smaller workshops, not to mention running our farmshop, the cafe, and all the usual daily housework of cooking and cleaning.This side of life matters to us because it answers a fundamental human need to be useful and active. It offers challenging opportunities for meeting and engaging with other people and it gives us a shared purpose, helping to create a sense of community. Some people may not be able to enter into this side of life very actively, but we put much more emphasis on cooperation and involvement than on productivity and speed.
None of us who live at Loch Arthur gets paid directly for our work; why do we try to keep work and money separate? Well, we hope that if we can feel we are a part of the community, then we will want to contribute with whatever abilities we have. Feeling a part of something that has a purpose gives us a sense of responsibility and satisfaction, even if our individual contribution may not seem very important on its own.
As far as money is concerned we don't want what we receive to be a measure of what we have contributed. We look at what each person needs and see how those needs can be met from the Community's resources. We do not go without things or without money. The aim is to encourage us all to become more responsible for each other.
At the same time, we want to avoid turning work into something which values one person more than another because of individual ability.
"Work is about co-operation, not competition"