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The Cohousing Association of the U.S. (Coho/US) has added four wonderful new board members in recent months, but a similar number will be retiring at the end of the year. Since we would like to expand the board from its current nine members, we are continuing to look for new board members. Our geographic representation has improved and the retiring members won’t hurt it much, so we now welcome applications from anywhere! Someone with a strong IT background would be particularly valuable.
You can find the application and the board member expectations in Microsoft Word format here: http://www.cohousing.org/docs/board_application.doc. If interested, please send a completed application to davidentin [at] comcast [dot] net and ludlummeg [at] gmail [dot] com. Thank you for your interest.
Renate G. Justin
The blizzard Renate G. Justin writes about in this story brought Colorado to a screeching halt for three or four days. No doubt there were many households in which cabin fever took hold. But in the state’s diverse collection of cohousing communities, deep-walled pathways to the common house turned the blizzard into a great excuse for a party. -DLW
Growing Pains, Trials, and Triumphs
Katharine Gregory’s story was a welcome addition to this anthology because it highlights so many familiar cohousing practices and very effectively answers the question, “How can we make this work?” -DLW
“So, what’s this crazy living situation you’re into this time?” my longtime friend Lindsey asked me over the phone from the East Coast. That was shortly after I’d left a voice mail message for her trying to tell her about the cohousing neighborhood my husband and I planned to move into.
Here in Colorado, many a devoted hiker has climbed all fifty-three peaks that are higher than 14,000 feet. It would might be an even greater challenge to visit all the cohousing communities in North America, especially since—unlike Colorado’s Fourteeners—a new one seems to appear every month. Raines Cohen, a resident of Berkeley Cohousing, observes that cohousing communities (and their guest rooms) are now within a day’s drive of each other all the way across America. “Boston, Ithaca, Ann Arbor, St. Louis, Lawrence, Denver, Salt Lake, San Francisco Bay area,” he says, offering one possible itinerary as evidence. “You could also tour cohousing on the East and West Coasts that way,” he adds. The nice thing about such a tour is that guest rooms tend to be pretty reasonably priced, from “Suggested donation” and “Please wash and dry the sheets” to $35 or so. And chances are decent there will be a common meal the night you’re there.
Suggestions for Writing a Great Classified Ad
The reasons people look into cohousing are varied and personalized but are usually a mixture of the following factors:
location (and proximity to other ammenities in the city),
community and social connections,
common hobbies and values within the group,
layout/floor plans of the homes and common facilities,
size of the group, etc.
They can get a lot of this information from your website, but your ad needs to get them interested enough to click on that link.
Information about the specific units available is great, however, don't forget that many people are moving to COHOUSING to find COMMUNITY. The more you can communicate about what daily life is or hopes to be like, the more you will have serious prospectors contacting you. Spend some time brainstorming with your members to come up with some unique or defining aspects of your cohousing group.
Here are some questions to guide you:
The Cohousing Association of the US (Coho/US) is continuing to look for new board members. The Board has recently added three new members, and now has nine members, from New England, the Pacific Northwest, N.M., CO, and VA. We would welcome a few more applicants, particularly representation from California, the Midwest, and mid-Atlantic.
Coho/US is a volunteer organization – our board members are expected to be big picture thinkers but also have the ability to roll-up their sleeves and get the work done. We look for people to serve three year terms , including monthly conference call and face-to-face meetings twice a year.
You can find the application and the full set of expectations in Microsoft Word format here: http://www.cohousing.org/docs/board_application.doc. If interested, please send a completed application to davidentin [at] comcast [dot] net and megludlum at granny [at] duwamish [dot] net. Thank you for your interest.
Past 2011 Tours
Saturday, April 9: San Francisco Bay Area, California - East Bay Edition
Saturday, June 4: Portland, Oregon
Saturday, June 4: San Francisco Area, California
Thursday, Friday and Saturday, June 15-19, Washington DC - Tours of the Mid-Atlantic communities (2011 National Cohousing Conference)
Past 2010 Tours...
Smiling Heart Coaching
Come as you are. Leave Different.
Neil Planchon CPCC (Certified Professional Co-Active Coach)
email: neil [at] swansway [dot] com
Oakland CA 94607