Finding Community

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Below are all of the blog entries, articles, and descriptions of past and future events on our website related to Finding Community. Can't find something? Let us know

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New cohousing group sought for downtown Oakland, CA site

Potential Downtown Oakland (California) Cohousing siteYou could be a future resident of a new-build cohousing community in downtown Oakland close to the subway (a very short ride to downtown San Francisco), City Hall, The new "Uptown" neighborhood, and the First Unitarian Church of Oakland (FUCO).

It takes time, energy and money contributed by the future-resident group to get a cohousing community built. Finding suitable sites at a reasonable cost in the Bay Area has been very difficult for many years... so when a site like the one described here becomes available, we're inclined to jump at the chance to see if a future resident group (as well as some outside investors) can be assembled.

A Family Story and a Blessing Way

Raising a Family in Cohousing, Part 1

Cohousing is often touted as ideal for families. As a mom in a developing community, I thought it would be good to capture how cohousing shapes our family and how family shapes this community.

Let's begin at the beginning. My name is Tiffany and I moved to Portland, Oregon, at the start of 2006. I lived in Seattle and my husband-to-be lived in Portland. Since my family lives in Oregon and my husband loves Portland like a friend, I made the move here.

The first thing we did was to find a nice place to rent to give us time to think about how and where we wanted to live. Alex, my hubby, had been following a listserv about cohousing in Portland and he told me what he knew about it. Intrigued, I agreed to go to some of the meetings that different forming groups announced on the listserv. I went to a cohousing social on my own and met the folks starting Daybreak Cohousing (then Sunrise Cohousing). I told Alex that he had to meet them too.

Community Tours

Establishing Community Rituals

Part of the joy and struggle of creating a new community is creating the threads that hold us together. In our society and in our workplace, we often take for granted the structures and rituals that help us identify with each other. Many entrepeneurs have experienced the process of building a business AND a culture from the ground up. Communities aren’t much different.

Sharing Suppers

At various times, we at Daybreak Cohousing have felt the strain of so much work to do in developing our future home. We realized early on that we needed to be especially conscious of building in pure social time as a balance to all our work, and to ensure that our extended family relationships grow along with the infrastructure.

Our Sharing Suppers were started to give us planned and very flexible social time together. The sharing suppers are scheduled, twice monthly affairs. We set the dates ahead of time, attempting to place them such that they are not too close to other community activities. And then ask for a volunteer host.

Journey Toward Creating a Regenerative Life Together

Saturday 4:30 – 5:30 pm
This participatory workshop using a ‘mind map mandala’ to collectively create
a personal plan for living more sustainably in community. Includes an introductory short
film, and series of video clips and slides from cohousing and other sustainable communities
visited around the US, as well as leaders in the movement such as Chuck Durrett, Raines
Cohen, Betsy Morris, Diana Leafe Christian and others. Participants will also be invited to join in the creation of the Within Reach documentary film project.

Building Community. Learning from others while not attempting to duplicate

As one of the co-founders of Daybreak Cohousing, I spent a lot of time in the early stages researching what communities who had come before us had done to build their communities, both physically and as people. The Get It Built Workshop by Katie McCamant and Rick Mockler of Cohousing Partners gave me a solid overview and foundation in the overall process and I highly recommend it. I found a wealth of generosity and information on Cohousing_L and in talking with folks in our local communities here in Portland, Cascadia Commons, Trillium Hollow and Penninsula Park Commons.

Finding Your Ideal Cohousing Community

Saturday 10:30 – 12:00 am
This workshop is for people longing to join a forming cohousing group, or an already existing cohousing community but who aren't sure how to go about it. This workshop offers the best tips author Diana Leafe Christian knows about how to research existing and forming cohousing projects, visit your favorite cohousing neighborhoods or cohousing core groups and get the most out of your visits, evaluate what you’ve seen, and join your chosen community gracefully. Plus, the pros and cons re joining an existing cohousing neighborhood or core group or starting your own! Diana wrote about both processes her books, Finding Community and Creating a Life Together.

AUDIENCE: people searching for community

But Is It Really an “Ecovillage”?

 

If a cohousing community uses the word “ecovillage” in its name, is it really an ecovillage? What does that mean, anyway?

Today I got an email from a cofounder of a cohousing project in the Northeast. She wrote, “Can you tell me how a community gets to use ‘ecovillage’ as part of their name? Is there a process, or does the group build the principles into their vision and just use the term? I’m just beginning to organize a group for a cohousing community in my rural village. I think that a group will form and very likely want to be an ecovillage.”

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