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Cooperative Culture Revisited

Today I'm blowing on the coals of an exchange I had right before Thanksgiving with my friend, who offered the reflections below on my blog of Nov 20, 2016 Defining Cooperative Culture....
As I am taking a few days off work, I thought I would comment on your latest very interesting blog. I think you are overemphasizing the differences between competitive and cooperative cultures.....The points you make have become staples of well-managed companies because they work.
....When he writes that I'm overemphasizing the difference between the two I wonder what familiarity he has with cooperative culture. I don't say that to be snarky, but because I've worked as a consultant to cooperative groups for 30 years and the vast majority of my clients haven't—to their detriment— bothered to define what cooperative culture is. In fact, a lot of my workload stems from groups that are ostensibly committed to cooperative principles yet bring unexamined competitive behaviors to the attempt, and it's a train wreck.

How Cohousing can Unite a Divided America

I’m presenting an intensive at the 2017 National Cohousing Conference May 19th in Nashville. I’ve been struggling with the content.

It was initially going to be a redux of the “diverse personalities” retreat I led in Arcosanti in the fall, but after being a part of the Women’s March on January 21st, it came together for me as a workshop melding cultural competency, diversity and community activism.

Gainesville Cohousing Breaks Ground - First in Florida

Congrats to Gainesville Cohousing, breaking ground on a community five years in the making.

Great publicity received! Click here to see local ABC news affiliate video.

GAINESVILLE, Fla - A co-housing community in Gainesville broke ground Friday afternoon, and neighbors are one step closer to moving in.

Community Co-Care Agreements

This is a compilation of posts on the coho-l email discussion list serve in late January 2017, in response to this inquiry:
Does your community have formal or informal co-care agreements about how
neighbors will support one another in their aging journey? Have you had
discussions and if so, what questions guided the conversation to help get
to practical agreements?

Thanks,
Dyan Wiley
Pioneer Valley Cohousing

Oakcreek Community - A Different Type of Senior Housing

"Having people watching out for you helps with the practical aspects of aging but the consensus government, shared work and shared spaces that are part of a place like Oakcreek Community meets important emotional and psychological needs. Having a sense of purpose and the social interaction that comes with living in community have both been shown to be vital to healthy aging..."
Click here for the full article from the Stillwater Press: "Oakcreek Community - a different type of senior housing"; Click to view Oakcreek's video for a sneak-peek at senior cohousing.

How to talk across our political divide

[This is a repost from Craig's blog on Good Group Decisions Inc. Craig also offers a Make Shift Coffee House: a forum he designed to help people understand each other. If any cohousing community would like to host such a forum, he will facilitate it for free! Contact Craig here.]

In principle, when people in a country, state, town, or family have opposing political views, it’s really hard because political views reflect our core values and our core identity. It’s hard when your sense of identity is threatened. It’s no wonder people opt out of politics or don’t like it when things get political....Yet opposing political views also reflect our diversity; that we come from different places with different experiences and different beliefs. Our diversity helps us learn new things from each other and helps us craft new solutions to our problems.

With conflict in the air, cohousing communities are poised to be shelters in the storm

[Diana Sullivan was inspired by this [click here!] one-minute video featuring our keynote speaker at the 2017 National Cohousing Conference, Sarah van Gelder of YES! Magazine.]

“We're going to need to turn to one another and not on one another”

Joani Blank on Common Meals: Part 1

Part 1: Common Meal Practice Run - 2016 Interview

“My illness is messing with my brain, making things fuzzy. But this kind of stuff, I can’t forget it.”

The cohousing world lost a pioneer and community mentor in the Summer of 2016, Joani Blank of Swan’s Market Cohousing in Oakland, CA. A fierce advocate for the power of community, all who knew her have stories to tell.

I had the privilege of interviewing Joani by phone a few months before her passing. She kept me on my toes, and soon I’d strayed far from the list of questions I’d written.

PDX Commons Gathers Together for Portland Women's March

Members of PDX Commons with Signs
Portland March

Gretchen's Reflection:

The benefits of intentional community can sometimes come as a surprise – especially when the community is still in formation, not yet even living together. When members of PDX Commons learned about the Women’s March on Washington and all of the sister marches around the globe, including one right here in Portland, there was a strong spontaneous desire of wanting to gather together, joining forces to march with our community identity: At PDX Commons, we stand for kindness, compassion, fairness, justice, equality, human rights for all.

Cohousing Kicks Butt For The Women's March on Washington

This is a re-post from MidAtlantic Cohousing; click here for all the fantastic pictures and full story!

From all over the U.S. and the world they came to DC. Singles, couples, groups. All stripes and colors. Very young and very old. Women and men. All genders. All faiths. All traditions.

They came to march.

There are many, many exciting stories out there about The March, the marchers and the message.

This is not one of those.

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