top of page

Our Story

Banana Mountain was initially planned as a short term informal project; a way to extend a piece of theoretical research into co-creation in facilitated groups of children while enjoying spending time with and offering opportunities to young people and families we knew and loved.
The process proved incredibly joyful and rich with potential. Something very special was happening here which was worth nurturing. Instead of returning to full time research and travel as planned, Luke and Nilda agreed to the group’s request to continue the project and see where the process of co-creation would lead.

The following months were pure magic. Incredible projects emerged from the interactions between members of the group and the site. Structures - physical and social - were constructed, tested, deconstructed and reconstructed. A collective culture and identity took form. Bit by bit a group of connected but separate individuals became a dynamic living community.

The time of Corona was challenging. As a private extracurricular group we were subject to the rules for private gatherings which changed unpredictably. What a community needs more than anything is to be together. For a long period this was often impossible. This could easily have been the end of Banana Mountain.

It was testament to the strength of our project that after over a year of severe restrictions and long periods of time apart our community emerged more unified than ever. Covid-19 often kept us separate, but it also brought us closer together and clarified our future plans. In a time of crisis and uncertainty, the necessity of projects like ours was clearer than ever, a clarity that led to the decision to work towards opening a full time school.

Since late 2020 we have been hard at work on this task. Trying to secure the permission to build the infrastructure necessary for a school has been slow, complicated and at times frustrating work. Nonetheless, the combination of support from wonderful and generous collaborators and a deep clarity of purpose, enables us to remain committed to the vision; a secure, sustainable co-created school which can support young people of Las Alpujarras for many years to come.

In parallel to this work, our day to day community continued to grow, shrink and evolve organically. At the end of our fourth year, this process led to our most exciting democratic decision yet; to close the first iteration of Banana Mountain - a research project planned to last for three months which ended up going for four years - and collectively redesign our system from the ground, drawing on all of our experiences, beautiful and tricky, of the previous four years. After an incredible year filled with deep emergent learning we have now reopened the doors to an even more fully co-created community, ready to keep growing and evolving.

bottom of page