The Evoco Center is a place where you belong.
We provide space to evoke our full authentic brilliance – to honor, nurture, and celebrate our intrinsic nature.
We provide a place to call home.
A master-planned tiny-home community for LGBTQ+ seniors to call home in our older years paired with an experimental retreat center for youth and adult programming. The goal is to create intergenerational, mentoring connections to strengthen our community.
A mix of private, personal housing and well-designed communal spaces for social living such as large shared kitchen and dining room, activity centers, community gardens, and more. Plus space for shared live-in support and guests.
Why this matters
Most LGBTQ people spend much of our day to day life existing in a world that is built for someone else.
This is so pervasive that many of us are comfortably numb to that fact. The world, especially in the United States, is built around rituals of hetero-normative culture, of opposite sex dating, pairing, and parenting. Leaders in media, government, and religion make decisions prioritizing those issues. As a result, we as do what we can to fit in.
Let me repeat that; we do what we can to fit in. The problem is, fitting in has a profound negative affect on human beings. The psychological and spiritual effect of fitting in diminishes us. It makes us psycho-spiritual (psycho, as in, loony, fruitcake, head case, crazy...); most often the effect is mild, but sometimes the effect overtly warps our mind and spirit.
Yes, that’s heavy.
Brené Brown researches shame and illustrates the profound difference between fitting in and belonging. In her book Braving the Wilderness Brown outlines, in elegant, humorous, and scientific detail, the cost of fitting in. Please read this book!
The bottom line is that shame diminishes our authenticity. When we are denied our authentic expression, we experience the toxicity of shame. Shame can lead to loneliness, and according to Brown, loneliness is more toxic than smoking a pack of cigarettes a day. It can, and does, kill us.
So, who are we authentically? Well, all of us are truly unique, but gay men do have a number of distinct gifts for humanity. According to Raymond L. Rigoglioso and his book Gay Men and The New Way Forward, we have 14 specific gifts. They include Serving & Healing, Reinventing Manhood, and Freeing and Enriching the Human Spirit.
The good news is that one of our gifts is being models of authenticity. It’s in our DNA. According to my own life experience, the joys of authentic expression can only be described in terms of belonging.
As a gay man, I spend so much of my life existing in a world that is not built for me. So we cn forget that there is an option to finding ways of fitting in. Once we do some self-reflection we will know where we belong. Many of us have never experienced what it’s like to participate in an occasion that is built specifically for us and our particular expression of humanity on the planet.
That is the primary reason I am creating Evoco. It is a very specific set of ideals for a very specific set of human beings. Not every gay man, lesbian woman or queer "other" will belong at Evoco, but those who do will find joy.
It’s a place where you will be offered opportunities for a heartfelt connection.
It’s a place where you will be challenged to be authentic.
It’s a place where you belong.