Self-sufficiency is a type of sustainable living where all the needs are met by the self or people living together on the land where the individual or collective is based. It is more commonly an aim than a reality and is enabled by such practices as self-builds, permaculture, sustainable agriculture and renewable energy sources.
To be sustainable the people in the community must have an income or resources coming in that support all their needs. In some communities this is an individual responsibility and in some there is a common income source that everyone shares and is involved in creating.
At the Kalikalos community based at three close-by Centres in Greece they make their income by running workshops. Everyone plays a role as a full or part time volunteer, yoga teacher, massage therapist, workshop leader or participant. Everyone has to contribute to the running of the Centres through helping in the kitchen. The intention is that all are equal and do as their role prescribes.
At other centres like Mamaki Eco-village each individual or family is responsible for their income and livelihoods.
In 2015 the United Nations announced a sustainable development agenda with a set of 17 goals to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all by 2030. The goals relevant to building sustainable communities are those related to infrastructure, industrialisation, cities and sustainable consumption and production with the latter focusing on where a communities water, energy and food come from.