Is this email not displaying correctly? View it in your browser.
Image description

Hello and happy summer!

CCN had its Annual General Meeting last month (thanks to all who made it!) and we’re pleased to welcome the new board! Margaret Critchlow will be a new board member, with Alan Carpenter, Lysa Dixon, Mary Huang, Ronaye Matthew, Kathy McGrenera, and Henning Mortensen all continuing for another year. Their bios are available here. We’d like to thank Kristopher Stevens, of Cohousing Options Canada Nonprofit, for his time on the board.

We would also like to acknowledge the contributions of Brad Cassidy, a longtime supporter of cohousing and CCN board member, who passed on April 10, 2023. Brad was a founding member of CCN, served on the board since 1997, and managed the creation and maintenance of the CCN website for many years. He provided quiet and consistent support for CCN. He will be missed.

If you weren’t able to make it to the AGM, you can find the minutes here.

The big news from the AGM is the board’s decision (ratified by membership) to develop a strategic plan to help guide our actions and advocacy over the coming years. We are fortunate; cohousing is increasing in popularity in Canada–but we need to decide how CCN can continue to help facilitate cohousing communities and their development. We would appreciate your feedback on this process! We have created a survey (available in both English and French) where all of our stakeholders can offer input to CCN’s strategic plan.

You can find the survey in English here. Trouvez le sondage en français ici.


The CCN Board

Introducing a new "Cohousing Connects" virtual monthly chat

Looking for a way to connect with other cohousers? Are you cohousing curious and want to learn more? Perhaps you'd like to chat about questions or issues in your communities or groups? Or maybe you want to share ideas for things that are working well!

Well, great news! CCN is launching "Cohousing Connects" on Wed June 14, a monthly virtual zoom chat the second Wednesday of every month at 7:30pm EST. You can join us at this zoom link.

The calls will be led by CCN board members who will bring their cohousing experience to share. Come join us on June 14 to meet others and share ideas to help shape how the monthly calls will unfold.

Look forward to seeing you there!

Communication within Cohousing Communities

How do you communicate within your community? From informal conversations with cohousers, we’ve heard about communities that do everything from notes on a bulletin board to email lists to using technology like WhatsApp or Slack to talk.

As with any group, cohousing communities have a variety of things that they need to communicate about and we have members with different comfort levels with technology and constant ‘notifications’. So, while some may happily group text, many don’t want to be included in communication strategies that require them to be frequently checking their devices.

And, of course, cohousers aren’t the only groups trying to solve the problem of how neighbors can easily communicate. Facilitating communication (and community!) within neighborhoods can be a difficult endeavor! You may be familiar with apps or websites like NextDoor that allow people within a neighborhood to post about events and announcements. (Although there have been criticisms that NextDoor can create a toxic neighborhood environment).

Facebook also offers solutions to this problem. Different kinds of facebook groups can help neighbors communicate. Recently, groups such as the hyper-local “Buy Nothing” communities on Facebook have increased in popularity. If you’re not familiar, Buy Nothing groups are very small neighborhood groups where people can post about items that they’d like to give away, lend, or share within their community. These Buy Nothing groups help neighbors make connections and (hopefully) cut down on waste. They can be an amazing resource; my own cohousing community has given away things like unwanted plants, piles and piles of kids clothing, and old gardening equipment. We’ve received things as diverse as furniture for common spaces, a deep-fryer (which has added some awesome things to our common meals!), and restaurant-sized cans of apple sauce and boxes of chocolate chips. But not everyone wants to be on social media.

While cohousing means that members of our community all know each other, this doesn’t offer us magical powers of communication. We still need a means to let other community members know about news, events, and announcements. Some communication is not particularly time-sensitive and email works well.

But what about more time-sensitive announcements? In my own community, I can think of various topics that people want the whole community to know about as soon as possible: questions about locating a kid or pet that went wandering; asks for urgent help with an issue in the house; or offers of food that you want everyone to know is available. My community uses an app called Slack, which is a kind of instant messaging platform.

But what does your community do? CCN would love to hear about the fun and fantastic ways that different cohousers have solved this issue and done more to create vibrant communities.

Updates from CCN Communities

Image description

Prairie Sky Cohousing Cooperative in Calgary, Alberta is twenty years old! They have a number of celebrations planned throughout the year, including a neighbourhood Open House, a garage sale, a feast, a dance party, and a Community Processes workshop (and, doubtless, also some spontaneous offerings).

They started their celebrations with an informal gathering to mark the anniversary of their muddy, snow-covered move-in in May 2003. Several original members joined their current residents to reminisce about the highlights, aided in the process by a special guest, "Fairy Sky."

Congrats on 20 years, Prairie Sky!

Image description

Roberts Creek Cohousing recently hosted a Ukrainian woman and her daughter for a few weeks. Liza and Yara (front row) stayed in their guest suite while searching for longer term accommodation in Vancouver. According to residents, they were delightful and lent much joy and energy, cooking meals with the community and helping with clean up duties!

Image description

Kingston Cohousing is starting to host in-person events again and has begun to look at building sites and meet with potential consultants to guide them through their journey.

Kingston's vision is to build a community of around 20-30 private dwellings, with ample common and green space, using sociocracy as their governance model. They have a solid group including members who have been working together for over a year and they are looking for others to join them. If you are curious about cohousing in Kingston, please email them at: [email protected]

Earlier this year, they participated in workshops with Simon Hill, a PhD candidate who is researching cohousing in Canada and the U.K. In the photo above, you can see some of their group after one of the workshops.

Image description

Members of Watershed Cohousing are spiffing up the building and grounds to welcome their neighbours and guests! They open their doors for the official opening of the second urban cohousing community in Ontario on Saturday, June 10th!

If you're in the area, come and join the party at 1 Mont Street in Guelph at 1:30 PM; a tour of the facilities will be offered from 2 to 4 PM.

They also now have a guest room ready for overnight or weekend visitors to check out their beautiful new building, meet residents, and attend a potluck dinner.

Big News! GrassRoutes Cohousing and Speedvale Cohousing are joining together and they have a location!

Their two groups have been meeting since November 2022 to explore avenues for collaboration and growth. This past March they decided to unite. They are now GrassRoutes Cohousing! They own land on the corner of Speedvale Avenue E and Delhi Avenue (207 - 213 Speedvale Avenue East) in Guelph, Ontario and have been
working on the physical infrastructure and approvals with the city. Zoning was approved by their city council on February 14, 2023.

They have six committed household and are in the process of onboarding six additional households. They're excited to be working with professionals to help them complete their site plan and design interior spaces to allow for privacy while fostering community interactions. They're looking for people to join them on this journey! 

Image description

When Soul Sisters moved in in mid-December 2022, the house was comfortable but had many small, and not-so-small, unfinished features. Now, they are relieved to announce that their dwelling is 98% complete! (In the photo above, you can see the finishing touches being added to their entry.)

Soul Sisters also recently hosted a potluck supper and meeting with the Ottawa Cohousing group. This organization was started by two local women to help people interested in the concept of cohousing.

Image description

North Vancouver cohousers opened their doors to the public in jointly-promoted Cohousing Open Houses on the morning of Saturday, May 6th. Despite unseasonably cool and rainy weather—and in competition with the coronation of King Charles—both Quayside Village and Driftwood Village welcomed upwards of 50 guests each.

Residents who greeted and guided guests through common spaces and into a few units agreed that the event was a success. Coffee and snacks were served, live music added to the ambience at Quayside Village, and—best of all—many questions about cohousing were asked and answered. Cohousing Open House Weekend is a promotion of the Cohousing Association of the United States.

Image description

Compass Cohousing is pleased to be hosting a presentation with internationally-renowned cohousing author and architect Charles Durrett.

June 15th, 2023


Willoughby Community Hall

20809 – 83rd Ave

Langley, BC

Chuck will be speaking about the many benefits of living in cohousing and looking at Compass Cohousing, a wonderful new cohousing opportunity in Langley, BC.

This is a free event. There will be a Q&A after the presentation.

Tickets are available via Eventbrite.

TruEarth Landry Strips has recently become a Professional Member of CCN! They prepared this information sheet to make sure that cohousers are aware of their eco-friendly products. If you're interested in using their products for your laundry needs, you can contact Natalia Ramirez at [email protected] or 236-900-5258.

If you want to unsubscribe, click here.
Powered by