Before stepping into the full light of the permaculture world, Kaila was working primarily in ecovillages. Her initial projects include experimenting with solar ovens as an alternative cooking method, and helping to establish a microcredit program with a women’s group in Senegal.
She spent a year researching micro-scale renewable energy and reforestation projects in ecovillages around the world, including Auroville in India, Kibbutz Lotan in Israel, and Findhorn in Scotland. This research culminated in a feasibility report for an online educational tool that enables individuals to calculate their carbon footprint and take steps to reducing that footprint through various lifestyle changes. You can find this tool on http://www.livingroutes.org/. Beyond this study, she completed four short films based on her research with the Global Ecovillage Network, which you can find at http://vimeo.com/2089461.
In early 2009, Kaila worked with Mike Reynolds and his crew on an Earthship in Jamaica. Out of used tires, glass and plastic bottles, aluminum cans, and earth, the crew built the first two of a group of ecological buildings that will soon be a part of a larger environmental education center in Orange Hill, Jamaica. In May and June 2009, Kaila joined another Earthship project in Kodaikanal, India, where she led a crew of local Tamil workers in the construction of an indoor greywater system.
Kaila is now living on a biodynamic farm on Martha’s Vineyard, the island where she was raised. She was a part of the first two PDC’s on the island, and founded the MV Permaculture Guild in 2009. She currently leads adult courses on sustainable living and works with high school students on issues of sustainable agriculture both inside and outside of the classroom.