This page exists to provide a more transparent window into how the Ocate Cliffs program functions, so that more people can find ways to be involved. Last updated in August 2016.

Communication channels

We are more or less keeping up with these channels of communications:

  • Web site, including:
    • automated newsletter subscription
    • automated ordering of T shirts
    • a page showing the current needs for donations and volunteers
    • on-line donations
    • facebook and twitter share links
  • Newsletter – Those in the tribe database (see below) will receive periodic newsletters detailing progress. The newsletters are also stored on the web site.
  • Google group “Ocate-Cliffs-Talk” for planning and supporting the manager(s)
  • Facebook page – managed by Vicki and Star
  • Twitter feed – managed by Samantha
  • Google ads – not actively managed

Current operations

The events held in the summers of 2014, 2015, and 2016 have been camping-style retreats focused on volunteer construction work. These events are the core of the mission to bring autistic people together to raise our capacity to work together to determine our collective future, and to move the project closer to having paying jobs. Because the retreats have been very rustic (and often having to contend with rain and mud), we haven’t been able to reach out to a great number of people yet. As te staff house is more finished, we’ll be able to run retreats of other kinds that appeal more broadly.

Digital files

The following sections detail what information we keep on file.


  • Database of contacts – This database (called the “tribe”) contains notes for 100+ people associated with Divergent Labs and how we came in contact, what they need and what they can offer. It’s a fairly complex system of overlapping circles, so you can be in the tribe database and be in one or more of the “circles” that are set up, depending on your interests.
  • Government and business contacts files

overall management

  • Vision folder – business plan and overall vision
  • Site plan folder – application for zoning approval and notes
  • Contracts folder – leases, notably the rental agreement between Divergent Labs and Star and Crystal as land owners
  • Forms folder – letterhead
  • Funding folder – letters of interest to foundations and recordkeeping on the grants applied for, and the overall funding plan
  • History folder – newsletter history and log of work completed
  • Jobs folder – open and past job openings
  • Marketing folder – logos, T shirt designs, brochures, presentations, and testimonials
  • Operations folder – forms, work retreat management notes, guest book, waivers, inventory, and operations manual
  • Other places folder – notes on similar sites

files on the site and building process

  • We are tracking progress on the build-out of the site in a linear prioritized sequence file. This is divided into sections for off-site planning steps, builder’s steps, and on-site construction. There are major milestones for making the staff house livable, and making the center rentable. As of this writing (August 2016), the staff house is being shelled in (meaning it will have a roof and windows, so it can be heated, but will not have any interior finishing). Following that we will need to find funding for solar electricity and the septic tank and drainfield, before getting an occupancy permit.
  • Build folder – documents on contractors, the staff house plans, water supply, waste engineering, calculations and diagrams on water flows and electricity
  • Built folder – documents on things already built such as the well maintenance and reporting requirements
  • Design folder – notes on the different guest house concepts
  • Land folder – documents about forest management and thinning, grazing, conservation easement, neighboring parcels, and roads; also maps of the vicinity, boundaries, trails, and site plan


  • The accounts are kept for Divergent Labs as a whole (not just Ocate Cliffs program) by Star (volunteer).
  • An equity file tracks the amount of equity Divergent Labs owns in the land and buildings.
  • A donation log is kept in the tribe database.

Management roles

  • Financials – accounts managed by Star (volunteer)
  • Operations – retreats managed by Star (volunteer)
  • Building – process and contracting managed by Star (volunteer)
  • Land management – roads, forest thinning and grazing managed by Star (volunteer)
  • Case management – contacts with people in the tribe database managed by Star (volunteer) – but not very active
  • Marketing – reaching out to potential renters has not started yet
  • Management of contracts and guests – not started yet


Also see the transparency page for Divergent Labs showing the IRS and other official documents and financials. FromĀ the Divergent home page, click on Transparency near the bottom.