Vision of Le Manoir

Shared by Le Manoir
Tags: Values

Le Manoir is a Quebecoise income-sharing intentional community. It provides housing for its members (in the form of one collective dwelling) and healthy ecologically-grown food (mainly grown on site). It offers its members a different social environment where we experiment with new ways of living together.

The purpose of Le Manoir Community is to have an impact on people and communities, by promoting collective practices and lifestyles and a way of thinking that encourages social justice and the protection of nature, while allowing its members to grow and develop their full potential.

The vision we have for Le Manoir Community is a balance between these 5 principles:


Group Life:  the Synergy between the Self and the Us


What holds our group together is the commitment to one another, mutual support, sharing and cooperation that builds human relationships based on trust. In practice, this is illustrated by:

  • Our community ultimately consists of 12-30 members: we want to remain a small group, as this helps to maintain a link between each member. At the same time we want to have enough people to allow a diversity of opinions and interests.
  • We live together in a group house. Each of us has their own room, but this proximity encourages connecting with each other. We eat together almost every lunch and dinner. We share spaces, tools and objects, dreams and time, our energies and skills, our joys and our woes. This is what makes us so close.
  • We want to co-create, to work together. On one hand, everyone engages with each other, we support one another, we embrace conflicts and we give ourselves the space to resolve them. At the centre of all conflict resolution Is respect for each person, recognition, and trusting that each person is doing co’s best. On the other hand, we are here to help, to encourage, to comfort, to laugh together. We have the desire to feel useful, and to accompany each other in our journeyspace.
  • Safe Space: Le Manoir intentional community has an anti-oppression lens.  We do what’s needed so that members and people who come here feel safe, and find allies and support, as well as a space where they can raise issues of oppression. Mechanisms can be put in place to defuse these issues of oppression, while remaining attentive to their effects.
  • We have a well-stocked toolbox to facilitate communication and maintenance of healthy and honest relationships. For example, all our members trained in nonviolent communication.  Also, we regularly have empathy circles, (in which everyone is free to share what co feels), as well as feedback or validation circles (in which everyone receives recognition for co’s strength and co’s contribution the group or others)  and restorative circles. People who wish to resolve a conflict can receive support from another member, a mediation committee, or an outside person.
  • Silliness, fun, play, celebration and gratitude: We believe that these are essential conditions for being ALIVE. A vibrant and colourful spacetime is maintained through play, music, and dance, creative evenings or morning celebrations, adventure or cocooning, via organized parties or spontaneous activities. We recognize the abundance of life and maintain the balance that makes the group a safe and stimulating environment. Thank you life!

Social Justice

The chance for everyone to flourish and reach co’s potential. All human beings have the same rights and this equality must be translated into everyday life, so that everyone can participate in the world in which they wish to live, in line with their strengths and interests. We consider the fight against inequality, denouncing all forms of discrimination, refusal of exploitation of anyone by another, as an integral and coherent part of the approach towards this ideal. In practice, this is illustrated by:

  • Participatory and non-hierarchical decision-making process.The goal is to promote the equal distribution of power among members, self-management and shared responsibility. Our toolbox includes formal consensus, consent, and sociocracy. We share with the anarchists the practices of self-management and direct democracy. Ya Basta!
  • Income-Sharing of all members of the community. We define ourselves as anti-capitalist because we question private property and fight against the appropriation of profits by a ruling class: it is the source of social inequality.
  • The basic idea that one hour worked is worth one hour.  This is inspired by an egalitarian and feminist vision because, among other things, it includes invisible work (dishes, cooking, caring for others). The contribution of members is done in hours, not money. This prevents power imbalances between individuals linked to economic capital.
  • Social and political activism in the wider community (family, region, village, city, province, state, country, world; “the tree is in its leaves”). The point of living in an  intentional community is not to create a small universe cut off from the rest of the world, a small isolated paradise of humanity in decadence. It is a political tool, a collective force, a reservoir of thought, and a team of activists ready to mobilize themselves to preserve nature and social justice. This can take many forms including: critical analysis of current events, participation in demonstrations, street theater, civil disobedience, opinion letters, etc.


As inhabitants of this unique and improbable planet, we see it as our responsibility to protect and enhance its uniqueness. Thus, we aim not only to have a neutral footprint, but we want to ensure that the traces we leave contribute to the proliferation and expansion of life in its beauty and diversity. The lifestyle we wish to share is one that nurtures the relationship with nature that we have as human beings, and the choice to live together is a means to implement more environmentally friendly practices.

Practically, this is illustrated by:

  • The fact that our community is located in rural Quebec. These days, farmland is lost, transformed into luxury second homes or homes for young retirees who import a suburban vision for local development. Building a community here that is a different model aims to counter these trends. We want to live close to nature (countryside / forest) to keep our connection with it alive, and not just for its beautiful scenery.
  • Adopting the retro trend Simplicity!We want to reduce our ecological footprint. For us, this means opting for “moins de biens, plus de liens” (loosely translated as "fewer assets, greater relationship facets.") It is questioning our "actual needs". It is trying to make, trade, salvage, and share what we need. It is making sustainable choices.
  • We raise animals that play a role in the growth cycle of our vegetables.  We compost  our organic waste, we only use composting toilets, we integrate our consumption of water according to its natural cycle, because we want to re-integrate our lifestyle with the environment and its cycles. We are inspired by the principles of permaculture, and integrate into our practices the awareness of our ecological footprint, the rule 3RV (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Valorise) and degrowth.
  • We promote ecological construction and renovation. This includes considering the need to build; how big the building and its rooms should be in order to be in line with our actual needs; which materials to use that take account locally available resources and the social and environmental impact of their extraction, and of their use, and of their end of life; and choosing construction methods that make use of more traditional or “democratic” participatory techniques.

Autonomy (collective)

Today's world makes us dependent (technology, petroleum, groceries ... love !). For us, autonomy means freedom to choose. Our conception of freedom is intimately linked to the principle of responsibility, that of "power over oneself": independence, sovereignty, self-determination, self-reliance, self-governance. The autonomy we are talking about is that of the group, and refers to our collective ability to choose our lifestyle.

Practically, this is manifested in these spheres:

  • Food autonomy: We produce and process much of our food. We garden organically, we pick fruit and mushrooms, we fish, hunt and trap. We buy minimally processed food. We do not want to produce absolutely everything we consume, so we exchange our goods and services with local producers who share our values;
  • Energy Autonomy:We want to radically change our lifestyles to reduce our consumption of energy. Merely living together works toward that. We want our main residence to be off-the-grid, to promote the most environmentally friendly source of energy: the negawatt. We want to use different technologies to take advantage of renewable resources, free and accessible. In the medium term, we want to live without fossil fuel.
  • Economic Autonomy: We have one or more businesses that generate revenue. We own the means of production. This allows members to work within the community: we are no longer employees, we become workers. In addition, a worker-owned, self-managed business provides a variety of tasks in the same community that enriches the experience and skills of its members. Unlike an anonymous job, our business is run according to our values, thereby building the world we want.
  • Financial Autonomy: We prefer to have secured/solidarity loans instead of bank loans.
  • Ideological autonomy: Our community is secular, that is to say that we consider spirituality or religion to be a personal matter.


We believe that openness is an essential quality to develop a viable community in the long term. Our goal is to have an impact on people and communities, by promoting collective practices, lifestyles, and thinking that promote social justice and the protection of nature. So, to open up to others, to ideas, to differences, and to share and gain new perspectives, but also to invest ourselves and get involved, seems to us to be the way to go.

Specifically, our openness is demonstrated by:

  • the desire to establish links with the wider community. We are participating in what’s happening around us; we contribute, we integrate ourselves, we "volunteer".  We partner with community / collective groups on certain projects. We want to give back to society and therefore to our immediate community. We offer goods and services. We bring something to society. Our community is open to the outside world because we are invested in it.
  • We welcome visitors. We want our project to be known. We want other people to see / know how people live in an income-sharing intentional community. We organize activities open to the public.  We share our tools, our knowledge, our skills, we allow the neighbours to use the resources at our disposal. Our community is open to the world since it allows each person to engage in it and benefit from it.
  • The desire to establish solidarity with groups and individuals from all backgrounds (experience and living conditions) who are actively working for various causes related to social justice or the environment. Our goal is to support them in their struggles and in return, they take part in our project and nourish us with their habitual ways of thinking.
  • We want to allow everyone interested to get involved as much as they want in our project. To reflect the diversity of the types of collaboration possible, and to best define the rights and responsibilities of each type, we identify different types of members.


Type of Involvement

Those who, in the community:

Type of Member

live and work (sharing income)

regular member

are newly living and working (sharing income)

provisional member

live and work for a specific period (not income-sharing)

WWOOFers, visitors and guests

use infrastructure and/or participate in projects or activities in exchange for resources (money, goods, time, energy, skills)

members of the “club” of consumers, neighbours, local groups and organizations

support the project by providing resources, but not participate directly

supporting members:  parents and friends, patrons and donors